I decided to start a new project this week. Because, you know, I need a new project because I don't have enough already. You all know that I love old blocks, especially the ones that don't get used a lot, mostly because they have a lot of pieces or steps. I like taking these apart and figuring out how to make them using modern methods. Usually that works, but there are a lot of vintage blocks that still can only be made using templates. I've decided to make some of these and put them in a quilt. Here's the first one I tried:
|Letha's Electric Fan|
This is Letha's Electric Fan, a Kansas City Star block from 1938. Isn't this a great block? I think I'm going to redo the center circle in a solid, though, because it looks off (and it does need better pressing) but it isn't. The fussy cutting wasn't fussy enough, so that make it all look like it's the wrong size.
Even though it's made from templates, this was not a really hard block. Really, the cutting was the hard part.
I used a rotary cutter to cut these pieces, stacking the fabric and cutting through all the pieces. You know those tiny rotary cutters that look like they would be useless? For some reason, I have an 18 mm cutter, and it works really well for cutting curved pieces! After the cutting was done, it only took a few minutes to put this block together. The curved was pretty gentle, not quite as bad as Drunkard's Path blocks.
I will be making another Letha's Fan block, but in the interest of honesty, I have to show you the other template block I tried and seriously failed to complete because they're not all that easy:
|Yep, that's a hot mess.|
This block is Gardener's Prize, an Aunt Martha block from the 1930s. I just could not make the set-in seams work. In my defense, look at those pieces! The diamonds are good, but the corners and side pieces are ridiculous. Seriously, the Letha's Fan block was so much easier.
I think I'm going to have to baste this by hand and reinforce the seams by machine, or else applique the yellow and blue pieces to a background. I really can't believe that anyone ever made this block using those corners.
So that's my new project, which I'm calling "the template block project." Isn't that imaginative? I have about a dozen blocks picked out, but I am looking for more. If you have any good ideas, send them along! Or if you have a good idea about what to do about the Gardener's Prize block, let me know!
Hope you're all having a good week! Stitch happy!
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