Sunday, February 28, 2016

Happy, Happy (TSS 004)

It's Sunday morning, and I completed another block in The Splendid Sampler quilt-along before the next one comes out. I said I would only make the ones that intrigued me so now I'm.. well... four for four.

But isn't this a happy block? It's aptly named Happy, Happy and created by Jen Kingwell. Her pattern called for straight appliqued circles, but I loved the idea of doing Yo-Yos and other techniques. When first I saw the block I envisioned ruched flowers, ribbon embroidery, poppies. I'm inspired by the others in the quilt-along fussy-cutting and embroidering. How hard can this be? 

Oh, how naive.

My first Yo-Yo in about 18 years and it came out a planned 5/8"! Holy smokes that's small! 

It took a few minutes to remember the formula, but I have it now.

Admittedly, I didn't like my first Yo-Yo flower. My second wasn't fabulous either. What is it? What am I forgetting? What's nagging at me? I felt like Winnie the Pooh

Think. Think. Think.
Ah, my running stitch was too small. As I result my first Yo-Yos were all "gathers" and little "flower". The smaller the stitch, the more fabric bunched in the seam and the taller the effect. With my red Yo-Yo, I made my stitch a little longer, and it turned out smoother and tighter.

By the time I was satisfied with my Yo-Yos, I had enough for a bouquet and decided to stick closer to the character of the original pattern. 

I almost fussy-cut my bouquet - lovely fabric.
Although not my favorite block, I've decided I might embellish it more but not make a new one. This Splendid Sampler is a journey, and I think it will be fascinating see how much I grow in the next year. Although normally very Type A about my quilting, I decided being overly critical of each block will take the joy out of this learning experience. And, besides, mixed in with 99 other blocks, who will notice a few imperfections?

Can you believe these are 6" blocks!?!

For a free copy of Happy, Happy, visit the The Splendid Sampler webpage.

What have I learned?
  • Batiks are fabulous to use for Yo-Yo's not only for their unique designs but they don't shred as much as regular cotton fabric.
  • When using cotton fabrics, use a good-quality fabric with a tight weave.
  • Don't forget that the smaller the Yo-Yo the likelier the fabric pattern will get lost.
  • The longer the running stitch the flatter the Yo-Yo.
  • Use the formula!
  • Yo-Yos are addictive!

1 comment:

  1. I'm with you on not being over critical of my blocks, I'm doing my best and then leaving it! I wondered about yo-yo's but having never done them I decided to stick to applique :-)Your yo-yo's look great!


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