Monday, 27 March 2017

The Rakish Needle - My Compass Rose Starter Block

Puppilalla, round robin quilt, New York Beauty Block, BOM, Patchwork, Compass Rose block, wind rose, mariner's compass


Well, what do you think? It is a bit on the whimsical side isn't it? Also fairly colourful. The inspiration for my compass rose came from Jennifer @ ‘Never Just Jennifer’, who made a compass rose starter block for the 'Round Trip Quilts' Round Robin she participated in. So yes, the blocks look very similar but then again not.


Puppilalla, round robin quilt, New York Beauty Block, BOM, Patchwork, Compass Rose block, wind rose, mariner's compass


Like Jennifer, I used some of the free ‘New York Beauty’ BOM block templates to make that wind rose. It was my first ever foray into curved piecing. The result is OK, I managed to preserve most of the points but the actual piecing of curves on foundation paper was not exactly easy. I regularily fell short and had to somehow gimick in add-ons to make the piece go around the other piece all the way. Subsequently, the blocks turned out wonky and had to be trimmed to shape, which in turn led to the loss of some of the acurate paper piecing. There you go, not exactly an odyssey but also not easy as pie.

I had initially meant for three of the four compass points of the wind rose to be removed from the starter block with the space in-between to be filled with ‘Adventure at Sea’ ideas by my fellow sewists but then changed my mind. I then felt that to block would have lost cohesion had I gone through with that.


Puppilalla, round robin quilt, Quilting, Patchwork, Applique shapes, Alphabet Applique, letter


I did not have any templates to foundation paper piece the letters for the compass points but when in doubt have applique come to the rescue. I cut letters from old-fashioned cardboard and used a water soluble glue stick to affix the shapes to the fabric. Afterwards, I used needle and thread to pull the edges around the shapes and baste them into place. Anything with curves works like a charm. The letters 'W' and 'N' were a bummer though, too many points and sharp angles. These present a problem when you try to press the shapes to get sharp edges for the applique that is to follow. As I am not too fond of blanket and zigzag stitches on my applique shapes, I try to tug the edges in and under and just go around with with an unobtrusive straight stitch.


Puppilalla, round robin quilt, New York Beauty Block, BOM, Patchwork, Compass Rose block, wind rose, mariner's compass

Add some yellow compass needles and the block is good to go. By the way 'East' translates as 'Osten' in German, which is why there is the letter 'O' rather than the 'E' in the block.

So this is what went into my starter kit to Ileana. The starter block, a fish block to be added at some point, extra fabric, the quilting journal and chocolate. Of course chocolate. I said it was mandatory after all. =)

Next up


While my starter block is travelling to grow into a quilt top, I am thinking of piecing the cutest seahorse and wonder how to go about translating the below atmospheric picture into a quilt block. I have an idea for the ship. If all fails I will just draw the ship with a permanent fabric pen right onto the background but how to go about the whale is a conundrum. Any suggestions welcome, cause I have no idea. Layers of applique from dark to bright?



Source
Doesn't the picture look dramatic? It would make the most awesome side panel addition to my quilt top.





12 comments:

  1. Hi! Your starter block is amazing! I really love it! x Teje

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  2. The NYB blocks turned into a nice compass star. Great idea! Like that the O looks like a jellyfish itself :)

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  3. I love that compass block. It looks wonderful Katrin even though it caused you some difficulty. I tried to follow the source on the whale picture. It doesn't list an artist but if it isn't David Blackwood of Newfoundland It's using his work as inspiration. You should check out his work for more atmosphere. He's amazing! The Art Gallery of Ontario has the originals. Haunting in real life.

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  4. WOW!! I love your compass block! Your fabric choices are fabulous and the piecing is just fine! Well done!

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  5. How about a cool ombre for the whale? One that moves from white to dark gray? A78mandel at yahoo (dot)com

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  6. This looks so fun! Tja, curves can be tricky, and coming from the accuracy of paper piecing to curves is a bug jump. I usually cut my pieces large enough to trim.

    The whale could easliy be done with freezer paper. If you don't have any, then remind me and I can bring some when you head to HH. (letters are a breeze with it too!)

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  7. Very pretty! I love your starter block. Good luck with the whale!

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  8. What a fun block! I love the combination of the different LV prints in the block.

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  9. Love the choice of fabrics.

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  10. That block is fantastic! I may tackle this one in my 2019 club RR...any hints or tips for new-to-compass-rose quilters? I found the templates here: https://www.lenzula.com/free-pattern/new-york-beauty/

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  11. Beautiful! Love everything about it.

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Happy to see you here. Thank you for taking the time to engage. =)