Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Take One, Take Two, Take Three

I've never been a pattern tester before... not because I didn't want to, but because it would seem that searching for testers announcements were usually made on the US side of the pond when most of Germany was already asleep. By the time the lights started coming on here, the spots were already filled up, and... well, that was that.

So, do you remember my recent butterfly mini mini’s here? The paper pieced patterns are from Lillyellasworld's, which she offers as a free pattern set… and they are so stinkin' cute, what's not to love?!? So I was thrilled when I found out that Nicole was looking for testers to try out her Forest Floor Pattern!

Firstly, the pattern itself is a extremely well done, start to finish. The pieces were clearly marked and lined up beautifully when joined together. The instructions are very clear and there are no lingering questions about how to assemble it. What I appreciated the most is that she included a diagram to make notes or play with fabric placement. This was extremely helpful for me since you essentially have to think in reverse, since that is the way that the fabrics show up once they are sewn onto the paper. Additionally coloring sheets are included if playing around with color might be a challenge for you. The finished block is a 7 x 7 inch square, with instructions on how to enlarge to a 8, 10, or 12 inch block. If you are looking for a drawback, then in comparison to the butterfly blocks, there are more tiny bits to deal with, but that's just how it is if you want to achieve a more complex shape.

Having just finished the butterflies, I was essentially going for the same effect, of using mixed low volume fabrics, with some fussy cut placements. I wanted to use low volumes with a touch of green. By the time I got the whole thing assembled, I realized that there wasn’t enough contrast with the stem and underneath side of the cap. To give it more contrast, I have toyed around with doing a little free motion outlining, but am a little uncertain that it will end up looking like an appliquéd block. I do however love the placement of the text "always" from a Cori Dantini fabric scrap.

So, if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again… now onto the green block. Efforts still the same, but with a darker green contrast. All in all, I think that the block is ok, but the bottom portion bothers me a lot… essentially my fabric stash was somewhat limited to achieve the look I wanted. Knowing me, I’ll probably undo the bottom half of this block until I’ve had time to re-think how I want to change it. My thought on the Heather Ross fabric at the top is that every toadstool needs a toad, right?

And last but not least… third time’s a charm block in purple! Not much to say about it, but that I much prefer the dark contrast, and this one is my favorite. Finishing three blocks was not an attempt to be an over achiever... quite the contrary... and just to be clear, showing all three is not my way of fishing for compliments. It's actually my honest effort to share a little of my thought process and frustrations when making this block. Well, perhaps it’s just my own perfectionistic tick. The good thing is that you don't have to wait very long to make your own version... this pattern will be released on November 16th... that's just around the corner.

Do you redo blocks after you’ve finished them if you are not pleased with your color or fabric choices? Or do you put them in the leftover block pile, or just incorporate them into your project anyway, like it or not? Any suggestions for finished projects for these? I would love to hear! 

Linking up this week to WIP Wednesday and Let's Bee Social.


  1. They are all pretty, beautiful and awesome. Too cute.I love it even without toads.

  2. Wow! They are gorgeous!!!
    Best wishes, Selina

  3. These are wonderful Allison. It's so funny how different we are because whilst I like them all the first one is definitely my favourite!!

  4. Well done, that's thorough pattern testing, part of the skill is getting the fabrics right, the third block is a triumph!

  5. I am currently working on a Farmer's Wife quilt, and there are some blocks that I am not thrilled with my fabric choices, but I am delaying my decision on whether or not to redo until I have more blocks done, and I see if I like it better within the whole quilt.

  6. Great job Allison! I like both purple and low volume version. It's great that you show your creation process - it's at least as interesting as the final result :) I do rework blocks if I don't like the outcome, actually the more sewing experience I gain, I tend to accept less and less mistakes..

  7. These look awesome! Great pattern, and good job to you putting together such cool color/fabric combos.

  8. They are all cute! Maybe make a table runner for next fall? Or a pillow cover - well just the fall decoration idea here :)

  9. I like the low volume block, especially with the little birdie on top. I only redo a block if there is a construction problem. Once it's in the whole project, it hides whatever imperfection I perceive. Visiting from WIP Wednesday. You have a lovely blog.


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