Saturday, September 28, 2013

Going around in circles

I want to thank all of you who sent me comments about my blog and your advice.  So, I will be testing the waters over the next month to see if the spammers come back or not.  In the meantime, changes will be permanent on my blog.  From this point on, my posts will be truncated and no comments will be permitted.  99% of you are wonderful and so supportive.  It is the 1% that are abusive and take advantage of honest bloggers. 

There is still a lot of information in me that I do want to share and I'm not ready to give up my blog just yet.  A number of you have asked how to do certain things and if one person wants to know, then there are others who want to know as well.

So, today, I will be talking about circles and how mine turn out so good.  It took me a while to figure out a routine and it works for me.  Here goes ....

Using cereal or tissue cardboard boxes and a green plastic circle template (bought at an office supply store), whatever size of circle that are needed are made and cut-out, the size is marked on each one and put into an individual baggie and stored away until they are needed.
I use Crayola Washable Markers (Ultra Fine) for marking my circles on the fabric (here for cutting them out and directly onto my block that will have the applique sewn onto it).  Just be sure to NEVER, EVER use a permanent ink marker with your plastic green template.   I do like to have about an 1/4" of fabric all around the cardboard circle.
A running stitch gathers up the fabric and once tightened, forms a perfect circle.  I used to use the same colour thread as the fabric, but  not anymore.
Once a whole bunch of circles have been made, then to the ironing board they go for a good pressing.  Use a hot iron without steam.  I like to tighten the thread and place it under the iron and keep a good grip on the thread while pressing down on top of the circle with the iron.   I just don't want the thread to loosen up and the circle to become wonky.
 Someone is playing very close attention to my instructions.
 Perfect circles all in a row.
 Let your fabric and cardboard cool before removing the cardboard.
 
On my fabric block, the actual size of circles that are needed are drawn onto the fabric using the green plastic template and Crayola Washable Markers (Ultra Fine).  This is the exact place where my circles are to be sewn.
 
 
After my circles have been made, the cardboard circle is removed and a cut in the gathering thread is snipped.  There is a reason for this and the next photo explains why.
When my circles are being pressed, there is a chance that the fabric will shrink.  Some of my red circles did shrink and they did not fill the drawn circle.  It wasn't noticable at first but as I stitched around the circle, suddenly it appeared to have shrunk on the last section of the circle.   Since the gathering thread had been snipped, I take my needle and ever so gently move out a bit of the red fabric towards the drawn circle line and finish sewing the last bit. 
Here they are .... all done. 
Have a great day!