The Splendid Sampler Block 25
Welcome to Bunny Hill and block #25 of The Splendid Sampler! If you’re joining me today, we are officially 1/4 of the way through this beautiful quilt! Can you believe it? If for any reason you haven’t started this sampler quilt yet, there’s still plenty of time! If you haven’t even heard about it, you can find the story here.
It should come as no surprise that the Bunny Hill block would feature a bunny! Sometimes I just can’t help myself. :)
Moda sent me this assortment of beautiful fabrics to use for my block and I loved them from the minute I opened the package. The brown stripe became the bunny and Sunday Best was born! Here’s a suggestion when choosing fabrics for your block: Pick the larger pieces first, lay them out on the background fabric, step about 3 feet away and see how they look. You’ll know if one isn’t right. I tried three different backgrounds before I selected the one you see. Sometimes I snap a picture on my phone so I can look from a different view.
Aurifil sent along 12wt thread to use for the embroidery, and I fell in love with this thread. It has a sheen that contrasts beautifully with the fabrics, it stitches like a dream and gives it the embroidery a beautiful look. I used a size 24 Chenille needle and it worked perfectly for this heavier thread. A size 24 Chenille needle is easy to thread and yet small enough for tiny embroidery. Now I’m dreaming of buying all the colors of Aurifil 12wt thread, I liked it that much!
Pattern & Fusible Applique
If you’re new to applique, fusible is the easiest method and the one I recommend. You’ll find the pattern for my Sunday Best block on The Splendid Sampler. To make it easier for you, we’ve provided two patterns, one with the templates reversed for fusible applique, and one with the templates not reversed for Spray Starch and Needle-turn applique. If you’d like to try fusible applique, Pat Sloan has a wonderful new book that will teach you everything you need to know. You’ll find the book on Pat’s website, just click on the photo below.
Spray Starch or Needle-turn Applique
I love the spray starch method of applique and this is the method I use most often. I find the prep work relaxing and I get the advantage of seeing my entire block together, before I sew anything down. It also leads right into machine applique if you’re in a hurry to finish. You’ll find a tutorial for both Spray Starch Applique and Machine Applique on the tutorial page at the top of my blog.
I’ve thought of a few assorted tips that might help with your applique!
Place the applique templates on the bias grain of the fabric when you can. The bias allows the fabric to stretch around the applique curves. If you’re fussy cutting a fabric (like I did with the brown stripe), don’t worry about the grain.
Cut any templates or straight edge applique fabrics, with a ruler and a small rotary cutter. I have a rotary cutter designated just for paper. For example, the bottom of the bunny and the most of the ground template above could be cut with a rotary cutter.
Use a large emery board to smooth the edges of the freezer paper after you cut out the templates. The smoother you get your template, the better your applique will look if you’re using the spray starch method.
Assemble your block right on top of pattern. Place the pattern over a light box if you have one and follow the numbers for placement.
I love this quilt so much I’ve been working on one for myself. I still have some catching up to do (I’m about 5 blocks behind), but sharing this process with all of you is so much fun. My own version is going in the shabby chic direction with soft colors. Here’s my “shabby” bunny block I just finished. I used the Aurifil 12wt for the embroidery on this block too.
I can’t wait to see what you do with this block. Remember the bunny doesn’t have to be brown and the ground doesn’t have to be green. Go wild with your fabrics and have fun. Welcome to the world of applique!