Spellbound Sew-along: week 4

June 21, 2018

 

Toadstools

 

Beloved of childrens’ book authors, the Toadstool has long been imagined as the home of various pixies, fairies and elves. The origin of the name itself is shrouded in mystery and the Oxford Dictionary describes it as "late Middle English: a fanciful name". Beatrix Potter depicted them quite literally, as stools for toads, in her beautifully detailed illustration for The Toads Tea Party.

If acorn-cups were tea-cups, what should we have to drink? 
Why! honey-dew for sugar, in a cuckoo-pint of milk; 
With pats of witches’ butter and a tansey cake, I think, 
Laid out upon a toad-stool on a cloth of cob-web silk!

 

CUTTING...

 

Follow steps 1-3 in your pattern...

 

This isn't a challenging block but it will test your 1/4" seam as it's got lots of small pieces, so cut carefully. I find ticking off the pieces on my pattern as I go really helpful.

 

My original block used traditional toadstool reds, but for this block I stuck to my Pepper & Flax colour scheme and was intrigued to discover that the most toxic mushrooms - the Death Cap and Jack-O-Lantern included - are yellow.

 

 

 

PIECING THE CAPS...

 

 

Follow steps 4-5 in your pattern...

 

Once again, we are using the simple snowball technique to create our toadstool caps and taking the opportunity to chain-piece my units, as I've described here.

 

ASSEMBLING THE BLOCK SECTIONS...

 

 

 

Follow steps 6-9 in your pattern...

 

It should be  easy to match the caps to the stalks as they all vary in width.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

...ASSEMBLING THE BLOCK

 

All of the elements of my block laid out and ready to assemble

 

Follow steps 10-11 in your pattern...

 

The back of the fully assembled block, showing seam direction

 

Next week we are going to start introducing dresden fans into our blocks with the marvellously named Mervielle du Jour moth. I’ll be using a simple and effective method for making the dresdens which I can't wait to share with you.

 

Nicola xx

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British designs by Nicola Dodd

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