I worked on the LeMoyne Star today. I had some work, which languished while I was out of town,so I had to do that as well, but it was great to get back to sewing a bit.
The LeMoyne Star has some tricks, but is not very difficult to piece. I took pictures as I pieced it and will work on a tutorial for a future post. The key trick is to NEVER sew into the seam allowances. I did sew into the seam allowances along the outside edge towards the end of the process, but otherwise, I stopped shy of the seam allowance, or moved it out of the way as I was sewing. My stilletto came in handy. Choosing fabrics was a key piece of the process and took longer than I expected. The ‘make visual decisions visually’ adage worked well, though, because what I thought would look good didn’t look good at all. Below are some of the choices I considered:
Above are all of the blocks I have made for the class so far. Don’t they look nice? They are hogging up space on my design wall, so I will need to take them down, but I am pleased with how they are coming out.
I had to be mean teacher to Frances. Do you know how hard it is to be mean to Frances? She is such a nice person and has such a lovely podcast that I found it difficult. I had to do it, though, because our class wasn’t progressing and we need to move on.
The irony is that when I spoke to her I hadn’t sewn (sewed?) down the middle circle for my DP either! I confessed and she was gracious about it. My problem is 1) I can’t decide the size of the circle I want to applique’ and 2) I can’t decide on the fabric. The 2 go hand-in-hand, I think. I thought I had figured out what I want with the lovely Little Plain Jane flowers from Michael Miller. As Lorraine Torrence says “make visual decisions visually,” so I cut one out, pinned it on (see above) and looked it. No go. I think the size of the Little Plain Jane flowers from Michael Miller is a little too big, but it might look ok in a different fabric. The fabric just wasn’t working for me in this context. I love it, don’t get me wrong, but not for the center of my Dresden Plate.
My next thought was to find another red that has a bit more white in the design and see if that works.
In different ways, I liked all of the choices, but I finally decided on the Mingle circle and appliqued that on.
Just a note about the applique’. Hand applique’ is not my strong suit. Still, I firmly believe that a quiltmaker should learn all different techniques so s/he can select the appropriate technique when making quilts. I know that Frances struggled with the hand applique’, but at least she knows how to do it. This was the hardest lesson yet, because it really requires looking at someone actually doing the applique’. Frances is a trooper for trying.