Friday, 8 February 2013

Great Big Kisses and other Things

Last year I had a severe case of beeitis and found myself in 5, yes 5 bees. It became too much and I found myself having little time to make anything other than bee blocks. I stepped down from do.Good Stitches at the end of last year and We Bee Modern Too, a bee based on the blocks in the boook 99 Modern Blocks came to an end at the end of January.  Stitch Tease is winding up; I have posted off the last strip and now have to make just one more before assembling all the blocks (which are amazing!!) and post it to the lucky receipient.

So while Stitch Tease will emerge in a different guise later in the year, I am now in a much more manageable two bees - Sew Euro Bee An and an English Paper Piecing bee, EEEEP EPP Bee.

So what have I learned about bees?  Well,that some blocks are...

...challenging but make you try something new like this paper-pieced block for Colby in the We Bee Modern Too bee.  Colby asked for the Just Jack block designed by Lynne.


This was my first attempt at paper piecing and I was a little afraid.  Luckily, Katy reminded me of her Foundation Paper Piecing For the Terrified QAL which was still up on her blog from this time last year.  I had a look at the first couple of posts and dived in posting photos of my progress on Instagram and getting encouragement from Lynne herself and others spurring me on.  Now it wasn't trouble free as I forgot to add the seam allowance on the bottom strip but the main section went together well. If you want to learn about paper piecing then look no further than Katy - she explains everything so clearly. Expect to see more paper piecing - I may just have got the bug!

Some bee blocks are as easy as pie like these Great Big Kiss blocks made from this excellent tutorial by Sarah, for Pippa in the Sew Euro Bee An bee. These blocks were ridiculously straightforward and super quick - they even travelled to France tres vite as they were posted on Monday and have arrived!



Some blocks  look straightforward but still bring Mr. Seam Ripper to visit like this Miss Your Kiss Block for Amelie in the We Bee Modern Too bee. On more than one occasion I inserted the patterned fabric between the HSTs on the bias and not on the straight edge.  Doh.


That for some blocks you begin to lose the will to live wish you had smaller fingers as it is really super fiddly like this English paper pieced block for Marguerite.


 Marguerite has designed a beautiful block but some of the pieces are teensy and challenge my basting skills - the smallest triangle is the length of a quilting between needle. However, looking on the bright side I'm two eighths down and am assured by Jo that things get easier from here.

Some blocks turn out prettier than you hoped like this Stitch Tease pinwheel block for Di measuring
16"x32". I can't show you now but not long to wait - all will be revealed in April.


...and of course you also get bee blocks coming back to you like these Megan Star blocks made by the We Bee Modern Too bee, which I collected from my mum at Christmas.


Conclusion?  Bees are fun but hmm perhaps not 5 of them.

Linking up with TGIFF hosted here this week.


25 comments:

Charlotte said...

I'm in three and am barely keeping up! I can't imagine what five must be like!

Lucy @ Charm About You said...

so fun reading about your experience. That EPP block is going to be amazing and I love the blocks you've got :)

Judith, Belfast said...

I was in 5 last year too! Too many! They are great for stretching your skills though! Jxo

diegoagogo said...

I am only in 1 and I am feeling pressured, how you are managing 5 I have no idea??
Managed to get 3 blocks behind. Have caught up 2, 1 to go. Until next month :/
My blocks for Pippa are blue & red as well. Same, same but different.

Toni said...

5 is definitely a bit much! Glad you came to your senses! All the current blocks are looking great, though that EPP one would have me breaking out the wine!

Sarah said...

LOL Great conclusion... You've definitely done some fabulous blocks through it all though. And just keep thinking of the 5 quilts you'll get back!

heart of charnwood said...

I've joined just the one, after my traumatic January paper piecing marathon! I love some of those beautiful blocks you have made, the Big Kiss is particularly effective, I love it! And the EPP is fantastic, but you must need teeny tiny fairy fingers for those little pieces. : )

dutchcomfort said...

5 bees sounds exhausting! I hope you’ll find time to relax now and work on some projects for yourself!

Indianna said...

You have been very busy, all of it is fab!

Patchwork and Play said...

Five bees would be very time consuming! But they have certainly been extending your skills- love the Union Jack.

Flying Blind... said...

Very brave, 2 plus Bee Blessed is my limit - your blocks are looking great though xxx

Catherine said...

I am in two and its just perfect. Love the groups and the blocks. Your blocks are fabulous by the way

QuiltCandy said...

Wow 5 bees, no wonder you were struggling! But all the blocks are beautiful and it's great that you've learnt new skills as well :-)

Canadian Abroad said...

I love all those different blocks, but I really love those star blocks you got for your round. Beautiful!

Dianne Neale said...

I think 2 is enough for me, but it does push you to try new things. The EPP block will be just amazing.

Katy Cameron said...

Wow, super busy there! I was in 4 last year, and am glad its now down to 2! Glad I could help with the PP :o)

diane said...

bees are a great way to be challenged and to meet wonderful people. I have so enjoyed the bees I have been in and wow! you have received and made some great blocks. FYI...please do not choose that paper pieced block for your next Stitch Tease block, I might go crazy!

Kirsten said...

Love all of your blocks - the Megan star ones are beautiful! I only joined bees for the first time this year and although I am only in two of them, am already feeling a bit daunted by the pp blocks.

Laura said...

Love your Jack! Thanks for linking up :)

Cindy said...

Wow 5 bees......you are my hero! I bet you've made some great friends being in 5 bees. Enjoy getting down to three.

Leanne said...

Yes, I had 5 bees I think last year too. It feels so nice to have several ending, Soon I will have just 2. Your blocks are great.

blandina said...

The block for Marguerite is stunning. I love it!

Yon Quilting Wife said...

That all looks stunning.
5 bees wow that is a lot.
My main down fall with groups is my lack of computing skills.

Jenelle said...

That's quite a commitment to keep up with! It seems like you had the opportunity to add lots of new techniques to your sewing repertoire though. Marguerite's block is pretty awesome btw. :)

Nicky said...

Five bees is too much and I'll be dropping out of some about August! eek! Just can't say no!

But you do learn lots, get pushed into areas you wouldn't otherwise visit on your own and meet fab, fun people in the process!

Want to join in the EPP one later in the year - been talking to Danielle about it!