Jul 12 11

Fusible Applique on the Go

This is the center block for my new applique quilt, as it stands currently.  (It’s not done yet.)  One of the biggest challenges I have is that I’m always about to leave wherever I’m at, so I’m constantly having to pick up a project that’s only partway done to move it to a new location where I can work on it again.  This can be difficult, unless you can get a project to a point that you can move it and still have necessary landmarks in place without losing the ability to add on to it later.  I thought this block would be a good example of how I’ve learned to work.   As always, the first thing I do when I start a new block is to establish my landmarks with soap lines:

The first thing I did was to place the set of 3 tulips emanating from the base of the block, and this was easy because I had that center soap line as my guide:

(Again, you’re not seeing the soap line anymore since it disappeared when I touched the area with my iron to fuse the applique shapes in place.)  From there, the next thing I wanted to place were my 2 birds that kiss across the center line.  Because each bird has 3 tail feathers that splay outward, I knew I needed the widest part of the block for them, so I placed the pieces in the midsection of the block.  I didn’t fuse anything at that stage, since I couldn’t be certain of placement until I had something that kind of “anchored” those birds in place.  Enter Mr. Heart; I’ve found that hearts are always an easy fallback shape when you’re trying to anchor structures to something:

So now I was out of time and ready to fuse, but I didn’t have enough time to decide what color I wanted to make the headdresses for the birds.  This was a problem, since the bottom of the headdress needs to slip just underneath the bird’s head.  This is where you learn to buy yourself time so you can pick up and move a project in process.  I left the release paper underneath the top half of each bird’s head, so once I got to my next location, I’d be able to slip the next piece of applique underneath:

In my next post, I’ll show you how I picked things up once I got to OH!  In the meantime, though, I want to point out how much punch adding a little bit of extra detail can add to your applique:

Teardrops go a long way to making a simple heart look far more complex and they can even “juice up” a simple stem with stylized leaves:

And one more thing…if you are the very kind person who made an incredibly sweet comment about our YouTube videos, thank you so much and please know that your comment was much appreciated. My YouTube account is weird and 99% of the time, I’m unable to respond to a comment, so that’s why I couldn’t address that personally.


  1. SewCalGal Says:

    Spectacular block Patsy. Love those birds and all the swirls. This looks like an award winning quilt in the making to me. Definitely inspirational (I want one).


  2. Claire Pereira Says:

    SEW (hee hee) many components!!! I see why you have to walk away sometimes.
    Love the idea of leaving some of the fusible paper…I might steal that idea.
    Keep on fusing!

  3. Connie Says:

    Beautiful block and love the idea of using the teardrop shapes.

  4. Kay Lynne Says:

    I agree with SewCalGal–it will be an award winning quilt when you’re done 🙂 I like the way you filled in the block with feathers and flowers around the birds. Hope you’re having a nice summer and staying cool.

  5. Susan O Schaller Says:

    You really have some of the greatest videos of all the quilters! Susan