Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Hello!  Yes I am still here in case you were wondering.  I have been enjoying my last few days of summer vacation and starting to think about getting back to work.  I have been hard at work on "Pieceful Garden" for the past week.  The paper piecing portion was about halfway finished when a few of my fingers swelled to the size of sausages.  I don't know why I just woke up one morning and couldn't make a fist, let alone sew very well.  My fabric just sat in piles on my kitchen table for a few days.  I'm almost back to normal and I can even hold a needle now, wahoo!!  I wanted to show you the applique portion I have ready and I have a tutorial on how I made the 1/8" bias stems.  I remember seeing this on a blog somewhere a long time ago and I can't remember where.  If this is your method please let me know so I can give you credit.  

I started with a strip of bias fabric 1/2" wide.

 I ran each piece through my 1/4" Clover Bias Tape Maker.  This is an awesome tool!  You just thread the fabric through one end and iron it as it come out the other, perfect stems with each raw edge turned into the middle!  (I starch the entire piece of fabric before I start.)

Here is what it looked like when I had all the stems made.
I almost didn't post this picture because then you would know how gross my ironing board is.  I should really get a new one.   

Next I take it to the couch!  Yea I do a lot of my applique stuff sitting down, you might say I'm lazy but I say I'm resourceful!  Using my mini iron I ironed the 1/4" stems in half again.    

Tada!!  1/8" stems. 

 When I glued everything onto the block it was really hard to get the stems to lay flat so I glued one side down figuring I would be able to sew the other side down when I actually did the hand work.  You can see in this picture the stem on the left has been sewn on and the others are just glued.

This is what the whole block looks like.  I'm so glad I decided to go with the super skinny stems and it wasn't much more work that what I had to do anyway.  This block is ready for the hand work, don't worry the little dog ears on the ends of the leaves and petals will go away when I get around to sewing them on  

This was my first attempt at skinny stems if you have any suggestions please let me know!  I'm always looking for new ideas.
Have a great day!

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