SM Retreat - 26 Flower blocks!! OMG!
Okay, I signed up for the Smokey Mountain Retreat in June, and am very excited - first ever quilting retreat for me. We are going to have a block exchange - a 12x12 (finished) block of your favorite flower, state flower, whatever. 26 of them. 26. That's a bed quilt! So - with time and design skill not on my side, I googled some of my favorite flowers for a quilt block pattern. I needed something SIMPLE. Finally, I bought a foundation-pieced dogwood blossom pattern from a vendor in Switzerland! Thank goodness - it is a pdf file. Well, when I want something, I want it now. Never mind they would email it within 24 hours, I only have 4 months to make 26 blocks - gotta get going, you know.
So, I saved the online block picture as a jpeg, and proceeded to tear my hair out trying to get it into EQ7. For hours, I learned how to import the image, crop the image, and use the image to make "applique" pieces using the patchdraw tools. I have zippo experience with patchdraw, so it was a struggle. Why do I enjoy fighting with my computer??...hmmmm. Anyway, after several hours, I had something that would pass for a decent dogwood blossom block, exactly the size I wanted. It's a little ragged for making a foundation piecing pattern, but it works great to estimate the yardage.
I have never done foundation piecing, so I watched a couple of lessons on QNN.TV and wondered why anyone would choose to quilt in the dark. Maybe if I just try it... But what I DO know is how to do simple picture piecing using Cynthia England's technique. What I have worked out in EQ7 can easily be printed onto freezer paper for picture piecing. I really don't know what to expect out of the pdf file I purchased - it is the wrong size for what I want. But, maybe it will help me.
Here's what I came up with for my retreat block exchange, the Dogwood Blossom: