Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Block-a-Palooza Block 8

It's in the mosaics, but I forgot to post a bigger pic of my completed 'palooza Block 8, a basket of geese by Angela Yosten (originally, as usual I took some liberties). Mine looks like this:

The center basket is machine appliqued using "wonder-under" fusible to hold everything in place. This was my first time doing machine applique, which just happens to be an item on my "new sewing things to try in 2011" list, so it was fun to get to do that on a 'palooza block.

Angela's block uses bigger "geese" for the handle. I cut mine in half, and used more of them. I also added the little circle at center top, and the little red feet for the basket. I also used a very small zigzag stitch instead of a blanket stitch to nail all the applique bits in place. My machine's blanket stitch, which I have not used before, and tested on a scrap, is a doubled stitch that looks impressively like a (very tidy) stitch hand-sewn with perle cotton. It's a nice effect, and I look forward to using it on a future project someday, but was not the look I wanted here.

The hardest part of this block was peeling the *&$^#%@! paper backing off the fused wonder-under. I have fingernails and know how to use them. Usually I am the person who can coax a stubborn backing off something when all others around me have failed. But not this time.

I followed the Pellon instructions to press the rough side of the fusible onto the backside of the fabric "for 5-8 seconds with a hot, dry iron." My sister, when I moaned about the peel-off hassle to her, said that sounded like way longer than necessary. It's also possible that Pellon had in mind sewists using cheap-o, wimpy irons, not a super-dang-duper high-tech iron, which is what I roll with. Mine gets really hot. Next time I will fuse as briefly as possible, on a lower setting, and hope the paper puts up less of a fight.

I used a total of 4 new prints in this block, and expect they will all make repeat appeances before the 'palooza fun is over.


  1. I had the same problem peeling the paper off and don't remember having it when I've used it before. About half way through, I discovered that if you put it between your hands & rub your hands back & forth to kind of crinkle it, some part will separate and then you can peel it apart. That probably doesn't make sense, but I'm not sure how to describe it!
    Anyway, your block looks great!

  2. for small applique pieces I just tack them on with fabric glue and sew away. Wonder Under and that paper backing and I do not get along