Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Fussy Cutting 101 Continued

Hello Again,
Well, well, at last, early yesterday morning, I finally completed the second fern for my Quilt top. I must say, I had begun to think I would never be able to successfully complete this one. It was way too complicated. But, at long last, it is finished. The fern is finally free from the fabric in which it had been hidden. All the snipping is done.
I spent most of yesterday removing the release paper from the back of the fern. A tedious task.
The leaflets are so thin and delicate, a pull too hard and one could come apart. Or several. Once it was separated from its paper, the task of laying it out begins. I will share that where I had planned to place it had to be changed, but just slightly.
I put the base or root of the fern in the lower right hand corner and began unfurling the snarled and tangled little leaves. I got the right side layed out flat and started on the frond that would swoop across the bottom. Almost immediately I recognized that there was a problem. Because of the curve and flow of the frond, some of the leaves were hanging off the bottom of the boarder. Bummer!
I had to pick up the entire piece and move it up and in about four inches. I had to begin all over again. No problem. It was only noon. Well, I fiddled with it the rest of the afternoon and decided I had to leave it alone for a while. Some things, because they are tedious, need to be left alone for a time. I was becoming frayed around my edges and needed a break.
This morning, after breakfast, I decided to dive in again. Today things went so much smoother.
I have the Quilt layed out on the dinning room table, to have a large smooth surface on which to work. The right side moved along so well. I had it layed out and flowing just as it had when it was in the fabric.
I moved to the other side of the table to work on the bottom frond. It was a little more troublesome. Leaves, because they were intertwined with other leaves, did not want to lay flat against the surface of the Quilt. Well, obviously I did not have the flow of the frond going in the same way it had been in the fabric. I gave some places a little more curve and straightened out other places. Finally, all seemed to be laying correctly.
I got out my tiny little ironing wand, a hot little bugger of a thing that can burn me if not treated with the respect it has earned. (I've been burned by it before) I wanted to tack down the center stem and some of the longer leaves before I got out the big Rowenta.
Once I had tacked some strategic spots, I moved my ironing surface underneath the Quilt and stuck the big iron on it. I held my breath. When working with such small pieces of fabric, I was concerned that it might not stick. I removed the iron. Yeah! It looked great. I placed the iron in another spot and held it, one, two, three, four, five, six, & seven. Picked it up and moved it once again, counted to seven and repeated. Fifteen minutes later and it was done.
EC and I looked through the thread I bought earlier this year from Karen French, down at the French Seam. EC picked out two great colours and I have them threaded in the Bernina. I am ready for some top stitching.
I've looked through a lot of the stitches available on my sewing machine. I found one that makes a beautiful pupil for all my little fish eyes. I looked at the button hole stitch and dismissed it as being way to uniform. I don't know, at this very moment; with what stitch I will top stitch this major fern down, but what ever it is, I know it will take forever.
But, I am a determined Chic! "Whatever it takes" is my motto and this fern will take some thread. I'm off to the machine.
We'll talk again later,
CAW, Quilter/Determined Chic

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