Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Where there's a will, there's a way.

I'm playing catch up, that seems to be the norm when I'm in a block of the month programme. The blocks for The Circle Game are all being hand pieced and I was getting a bit behind. I'm definitely not  skilled at hand piecing so these circular blocks are a challenge for me. I had to phone Amitie to see what size these were supposed to finish.  Mine didn't measure quite right, no surprises there and that discrepancy could prove to be my downfall when I set the blocks into the surrounding pieces. This one was a bit distorted.
I thought it would be a good idea to block them so I took a piece of pre-shrunk fabric and drew a 10 1/2" circle on it. I then pinned all the edges of all my blocks to the outside drawn line. The whole thing is on my hard pressing surface. I've done this block before so this is just to show you  again.
I spritzed the block with water, let it soak in a little and pressed with a hot dry iron. I then leave the block to cool. Now my blocks all measure 10 1/2" unfinished, cause I made them, ha, ha.
 I totally chickened out of hand piecing this Joseph's Coat block, I knew it was beyond me and admitted defeat at the beginning. I ended up appliqueing it.
  This one was a walk in the park compared to some of the others.
I can manage klosjes  though and got another 15  to add to the pile.

Talking about a walk in the park, that's just what I did today. After some very wet weather, it was good to get out. There were a huge number of toadstools around but check this out, I think it had the top knocked off it but it was such a great orange colour.
I came across these too, they all looked like some sort of fungi but I don't know what they are. They look like something out of the little shop of horrors and were a vibrant pink. This must be a fresh one.
And this is what the older ones look like. There's strange oozing stuff that comes from the middle that looks like mud. Does anyone know what they are?
Edit: Thanks to Kirie and Polyquats for providing the answers in the comments, mystery solved.
 

49 comments:

Bloom said...

I'm onto the fungi Janet. I just happen to work with a fungi expert, and have forwarded him the photos for his learned opinion. WIll let you know what he comes up with. Ros x

Mary said...

Great blocks! I love that you steamed and ironed them into submission! Ha! Interesting colors you are finding around the park....but the last two pics are a bit scary!!!

Jessica said...

Your circle blocks look great!

Kirie said...

Besides the amazing quilt blocks I was astonished to see such fungi. The star-looking one is Aseroe rubra, commonly known as the anemone stinkhorn, sea anemone fungus or starfish fungus. For the first one, I have no idea.

polyquats said...

Sorry if this is a double post, problems with the lousy web browser at work.
I recognise the first fungi. My sister used to have it in her garden. It stinks! Took ages to get rid of it. It's called Phallus rubicundus.

Cathy said...

I love your blocks Janet, thanks for showing how to block it I've not done that before. As for your fungi, I'm not surprised that first one is a Phallus something or other, I won't tell you what I thought of when I first saw it!! You have some very weird things where you walk!!! xo

Andi said...

Never knew you could block a quilt block!!
Genius!!!

Patchwork and Play said...

Fabulous blocks- I too didn't know you could iron them into submission! And what amazing fungi! I had to check you were from Australia, not Mars! They actually remind me of stuff that lives in the sea so I am not surprised by the anemone name!

Meredith said...

ok I disagree. If you hand pieced the blocks I see photos of you are skilled at hand piecing. They look great!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Shirley said...

Great looking blocks and great piecing skills. I spray starch mine sometimes to get them to behave. Just don't eat those mushrooms, wierd things happen when you do, I would hate for your quilting arm to drop off.

Rachaeldaisy said...

EWWWwwwwwW!!! Those fungi are a bit creepy!!!! I love the circle blocks, such amazing fabrics!! So interesting to read about blocking them.

Maree: said...

I Love Circles & your Blocks are Fabulous...Great Construction in them...Thanks for sharing.
cheers

Janet said...

Great blocks. Not boring at all.
Brillant, the why you made them fit your way.
Yes, interesting fungi. Wish we had
some, just dust here.

Stephanie said...

Gosh I love all of your circle blocks. You always offer such great tips.

Very interesting fungi!!! The pink spidery thing looks like an urchin or something from the sea.

Crispy said...

Your blocks are wonderful Janet!! Curved piecing is not the easiest part of hand piecing (machine piecing either). I'm really loving these blocks!!

Crispy

Joan said...

Wonderful blocks Janet - those fungi are impressive - perhaps one is an insect eater and thats whats left behind :( yuk...maybe not :)
Never doen curved piecing, so I am impressed with yours!

Kathie said...

the blocks are beautiful
hand piecing just not my thing
ah yes blocking and a bit of steam can make it become the size you need!
just beautiful
Kathie

Barb said...

Your blocks are awesome...when you find out what the fungus is...wil you post?

ranette said...

I love all of these blocks and I'm sad because I should have done this block of the month...lol
I didn't know you could "block" a quilt block either, but now I do and watch out world!
I may have to pull my Klosjes out of hibernation because yours look so good.

Kaaren said...

Your talents and ingenuity never cease to amaze me, Janet. I love your solution...if it doesn't fit, make it fit! Works for me.

As for the fungi, I think I'll pass. They do look prehistoric to me.

Notjustnat said...

Wonderful blocks, they are all gorgeous colour too. Love the Joseph's Coat block best.
No, I haven't seen anything like those pink thingy! I wander if it can be use in natural dye! Hugs Nat

Pinkadot Quilts said...

I never think to block anything, I must remember that. I would have appliqued the Joseph's Coat block too!
Your blocks are fabulous!

Carrie P. said...

You are the master of the fabric. lol What challenging blocks to make.
Strange but pretty fungi.

Thimbleanna said...

Haha -- I'm laughing at the name of that first fungii. Your blocks are gorgeous Janet. I didn't know you could block quilt blocks (ha) like you can knitting. Very clever!

Lori said...

Love your circle blocks Janet! And the idea to block them is perfect.

Donna~~ said...

Your circles are wonderful. What a good idea to block them into submission!

Ann Champion said...

I love your circle blocks! You're doing a fabulous job on them..and the fabrics are so interesting. I would have appliqued the Joseph's Coat too.

The fungi are so interesting. I'm glad you had your camera and shared the pics. I've never seen anything so exotic!

imquilternity said...

I absolutely love your Circle Game blocks! Such a wonderful combination of great fabrics!!!

Janet said...

Those fungi are so colorful it's hard to believe they're real - so interesting.
Your circle blocks look wonderful! They look like they would be very challenging to piece. I'm glad you were able to get them to the size you need.

Donna K. from N. TX said...

I've used your ironing a wonky block technique before with success. Sometimes you just have to mess with it until it works.

Nifty Quilts said...

Your blocks are beautiful, love those fabric choices. And your mushrooms very interesting! It's not often that I show my grown son something from a quilting blog. But I'll show him these!

Mimi said...

Wow, your blocks are beautiful. I can't wait to see what quilt these go into. You amaze me with all the interesting projects that you work on. Wish we were neighbors. Doesn't matter to us quilters where we find and fall in love with "color" ....even if it is fungii. LOL

Julia said...

Lovely blocks Janet..will look great togther...must remember the blocking trick..
That fungi looks a bit scary...like something out of a sci-fi movie..
Julia ♥

Sonja♥ said...

Not sure this would be a "game" for me, I'm not gifted in hand piecing;)
I love the contrast between the B&W paper/striped/dotted fabric and the coloured fabric:) Splendid!!!
Waow, never saw such colored and star or phallus shaped fungis in Europe!!! Ours are quite boring compare to yours:)

Marit said...

Your BOM is divine! Thank you for sharing how you size them... The wildlife in your garden is quite special!

Dixie said...

Your fabric choices for the circle blocks are amazing, and your blocking idea looks like it worked great! I love the look of fungi, toadstools and moss, but my husband thinks its wierd - pooh on him! :)

Kim D. said...

I love your wonderful blocks Janet, I had to chuckle at your comment on the Joseph's Coat block, I would probably end up appliqueing it as well. I really need to improve my hand piecing skills. Like everyone else I'm intrigued by the bright toadstool and the fungi. The fungi looks like a starfish.

Sujata said...

Janet,

I need to hold my jaw up from now on every time I visit your blog! Your blocks are gorgeous. I don't think I will add any thing new to what has already been said.
You are amazing! Still have to tackle that hand piecing.. Someday!

SewWhatsNew said...

Janet, Love your blocks and your fungi. I make donation quilts with friends for our local hospitals and so on; and when the blocks come back they are not all the same size, so I do block them before I try to re-make or even trim them to fit. Blocking works for square blocks also. Thanks for sharing all your beautiful work.

Bloom said...

Janet, direct from my fungus expert friend: "The "Starfish Fungus" is Aserore rubra which is extremely common around Sydney and more so where lots of wood mulch has been used. The other one is probably Lysurus garderi although it is missing its "head". Both are part of the group called stinkhorns due to the unpleasant smell associated with the slimy spore mass which attracts flies who carry around the spores on their feet and spread it around." i also neglected to say how gorgeous your circle blocks are! They are amazing! Ros x

M and M plus 3 said...

When do you sleep? I struggle to get one block done and here you have several, all of which are AWESOME!

Terry said...

Your blocks look great! And I love all the odd little toadstools! :0)

Barb said...

good lesson in blocking, Janet.
Your blocks look wonderful.
I love your fungi photos - weird things aren't they?

Michelle said...

I absolutely love your circles, wish I had known about the circle game earlier, it would have been right up my quilting alley!!

Kris said...

What fabulous circles! I think you have tamed them. Nice job.

Oops-Lah said...

Great way to "force" the round blocks into the right shape/size. Do you do it with square blocks too? Or does that not work? Your circle blocks are stunning and I'm looking forward to seeing what you'll do with them.

Ivory Spring said...

I am totally loving these circles, Janet. You know, some people have a way with words, you have a way with fabrics!!!!

Nanette Merrill and daughters said...

The blocks are fabulous, fantastic and wonderful. They make me want to stop everything and start sewing.

Robin said...

The blocking method you've got is so smart! I will have to give that a try next time I need a block to submit. :) And I LOVE the blocks! What a fun BOM!