Monday, October 8, 2012

Leaf Me Alone!

WOW!  It finally got here, my day for the Leafs Me Happy Blog Hop.  It seemed so exciting when I signed up for it.  Leaves, all leaves!  And I do so love leaves.
My leaf is called Leaf Me Alone and was done as part of a group two years ago.  I chose a pattern and they all made me their interpretation of my suggestion.  The leaves I got back were WILD!  I put them together in a quilt top a year ago and there they sit, beside my quilting machine ready to be quilted.  Soon......yes, soon.
After you have finished looking at my tutorial on making my leaves, you can check out the other wonderful fellow participants at:
Leafs me Happy with Cherry from Cherry Blossoms Studio is our cheerleader
Monday 8
Feathered Nest Studio
Grandmama's Stories
From This to That
Little Mama Hen
Quilt Monster in my Closet
Kathy
in stitches & seams
Buzzing and Bumbling
Nunu's Quilt World
Quilts And Dogs
Briarside Lane
I have a curved piece tutorial for you. Most people are terrified of curves but they are really easy if you give them an open minded try. And if you don’t do well the first time, just toss it, no quilt police will know!
Get over your fears and try something new! It took me three or four leaves to get any good at the process, so don’t think I aGlenLeaves2m really special! You will probably do better than I did because you are more patient and a slower sewist than I am! I do things fast and fearlessly.
I created a quilt with curved pieced green leaves from blocks I taught as part of a block swap several years ago.  I love its randomness and will get it quilted one day!     
Here’s what you do.
Go find yourself some scraps of fall leaf colors! You can tos10scraps gathereds in just a few accent colors too maybe. And let’s try some curves.
Gather up your fall colors. You will need a neutral background for this leafy challenge. Neutral-ness is up to you, however! I used muslin square about 14 inches by 14 inches.
12 french curveLet me say up front, this is not a precise piecing type block. Sometimes you don't really know how large the block or the leaf  will end up to be. Think Buggy Barn technique. I have a French Curve and find it easy to shape and use as a cutting template. If you use this to cut with be aware that your fingers have no protection, so use a cutting glove or don’t cut close to the curve. Don’t cut yet, keep reading.
I found that large pieces and gentle curves are easier to work with than smaller ones at first. Start 11 sew togetherout with your leaf fabrics and sew them together to get a nice bit of fabric.  Cut a leaf shape about 12 or so inches long. Make the curve gentle. Gentle curves are so easy to work with when you 12 same for other side are learning. You can get fancy-dancy later. Cut the leaf in half. Either curvy or straight. I did my first two straight. Hunt in your scraps to find the leaf's spine. Sew it together --- oops! No thread in the machine!
Oh no, I was so excited I got ahead of myselfcindy, I didn't make the veins! If you want veins, take a leaf side and whack off a piece across the half in a straight line. Add a zinger piece to the bottom of your leaf segment. Sew. Do it again. Maybe even again! Trim the leaf half so it can be sewn back to the first piece. You should now have your leaf with veins. OK, let’s put it into a neutral background.
13 add stemChoose a fabric to be the leaf stem.  i used a 2 1/2 inch strip of a dark color to set it apart so it could be seen.  Black would also be good here, or a dark brown.

Add the stem to the two leaf sides and join, to make a whole leaf.  
  14 sew together

The background should be larger than you want the final block to be, I  made mine about 14 inches. Lay the background right side up and  141 lay on bkg squareplace the leaf right side up on top of the background where the leaf will end up. This is where a French curve or a flexible curve will work but I just use a ruler edge.

I carefully move the 142 cut curveedge of the ruler along the edge of the leaf 143 continue cut curvekeeping the rotary blade against the ruler while I cut the same  exact curve in the background as in the leaf. 





144 curve cut 146 registration marks








Make a couple of registration marks by placing a pin at a recognizable point on both the leaf and the background.
147 lots of pins Fold the leaf back over the background so the right sides are together at the registration point. Pin. Some people use hundreds of pins, some use just a few strategic pins and some don't use any. Sew slowly making sure fabric edges meet.
I put a few pins at strategic points and use a tweezers to hold 148 smooth seamthe two pieces even as I sew.  Sew with the background on top and be careful not to stretch  the bias.  Move only a few stitches at a time and adjust the fabric edges often.  If you work carefully here your curve will be perfect!
 150 open up
Open out and press and you have it half done. See!  It actually works! 



151 press out
Do the same for the other side making sure your first cut for t160 cut curve for othe sidehe curve has both the background and  the leaf right side up.  (Smile, check it again to make sure!)


146 registration marks
You will have to sew the two remaining open seams by folding161  sew the same way the background over on itself and sewing away from the block to the outside edge.  You can add stems or branches if this block will be connected to a “tree”. 

Press. Trim to the desired size and Voila! You have a leaf! These are so fun!
DSC08892 With curved piecing, your leaf will be beautiful! Try some small leaves, fat leaves, skinny leaves or some really odd leaves! They are soooooo addicting
I hope this was enlightening. If you have any questions, please let me know. It I wasn’t clear enough about the curve piecing you can find a number of tutorials on the internet using the various techniques.
And I have the perfect words for the bottom of the quilt! LEAF ME ALONE!
Don’t cha just love it???!!!
Now you should visit my Leaf Buddies and see the leaves they have prepared for you.
Monday 8
Feathered Nest Studio
Grandmama's Stories
From This to That
Little Mama Hen
Quilt Monster in my Closet
Kathyin stitches & seams
Buzzing and Bumbling
Nunu's Quilt World
Quilts And Dogs
Briarside Lane

76 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing the tutorial. I love scrappy quilts and the leaves are great.

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  2. Your leafs look great, you should quilt them... soon ;)
    ...and thanks for the tutorial!

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  3. I am flabergasted at how similar your Leaf Me Alone is to my "Don't Leaf Me Alone" block!!! We have never seen each other's blocks and yet they are so much alike!!! Even the name! Mine is not pieced, though, but it is one leaf with a stem much like yours. That is wild!!! I love how yours came out!

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  4. That is wonderful the way you did the curved and you make it look so easy. I will have to try it. Thanks for sharing.

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  5. wow...awesome tutorial! Love the pieced leaf block!
    Thanks for sharing :)

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  6. Thanks for sharing. Great tut. Love the blend of fabrics in your leaf.

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  7. Amazing block and a great tutorial. I am not afraid of round shapes, so I'll use that. Thank you.

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  8. Curved pieces still make me nervous, but those leaves are just brilliant!

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  9. wow fantastic bloc and really good tutorial that can be used for any curvy piecing! thank you

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  10. I love that top from day one! Your in person tutorialvthat day made this even easier and NOW I have a written tut to help. Thanks!

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  11. You made it look so easy--very nice leaves!

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  12. Love your carefree tutorial and hints about not making the leaves too small. Curves can be a challenge but you've taken the mystery out of them. Thanks for sharing.

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  13. It looks awesome and sounds like a fun challenge. Thank you for the tutorial.

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  14. Lovely pieced leaves! Thanks for the tutorial. happy hopping - Little Mama Hen

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  15. Your leaves are wonderful, the colours are marvelous!
    Thank you for sharing your technique.

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  16. how cool is this! and fun, I have to try at least one - great tutorial:-)

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  17. I love your scrappy leaf block! Thanks for the tutorial on sewing curves, not sure I'm up to that level yet!

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  18. Thanks so much for the picture tutorial - I love how you actually pieced the leaf into the background, rather than appliqueing it. You've got my wheels a-turning!

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  19. Very cool leaves and a neat tutorial. Thanks for sharing that too.

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  20. Very pretty leaves! Great tutorial. Thank you for sharing.

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  21. Great leaves and tutorial. thank you for sharing.

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  22. Very modern leaf! Thanks for telling us how to make them!
    hulseybg@gmail.com

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  23. Now that looks like fun , may just have to give this a try real soon, thanks for the tutorial !~

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  24. GREAT tutorial! I've marked it for my favorite tuts - so I can come back on a day when I have more than 5 minutes - to make this leaf!! Thanks for much for sharing!! Oh - the block is Be-u-tee-full!!

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  25. I just adore your leaves. They are great and you did such a great job with your tutorial. Thanks for sharing with us all. I know I learned a lot.

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  26. I think you did a great job piecing them together...you would be great at puzzles..I don't think I could do this...

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  27. Very nice. Your leaf is very unique. It is a great block!

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  28. I love your leaves! and thank you so much for the tutorial! I shall be trying it!!

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  29. Rosemary B here:
    Beautiful! Love the colors and fabrics. Thank you for the amazing tutorial too! I am gonna print it and save.
    Just lovely thank you for sharing

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  30. Pretty fabrics you chose. Thanks for the wonderful tutorial.

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  31. Thanks for the tut. Nice choice of fabrics. Thanks for sharing.

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  32. Well, how fun and cute are these leaves!!

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  33. Really pretty leaves! Lovely fabric! Thanks for sharing.

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  34. Wow!! I just might have to try that.

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  35. Thanks for sharing your technique! Your leafs look wonderful!

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  36. Wow now this might just change my mind about curves. I'm going to have to Santa for one of those rulers. Thank you for dahring with us today.

    Sincerley,
    Tricia

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  37. Thanks for a great tutorial and sharing your wonderful leafs.
    Britt-Inger in Malmö Sweden

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  38. Beautiful leaves.Thanks for the tutorial!!

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  39. Thanks for the lesson. I might give it a try! Beautiful!

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  40. Really enjoyed the lesson! Thanks for being part of the hop

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  41. Great block and thanks for the tutorial.

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  42. Thanks for the informative tut. Not only curves but all that cutting for the veins was great. Have a perfectly lovely fall day. :)

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  43. Wow......a really neat block and a turorial. Now....I'm wondering where DiNozzo got his name? No Ziva playmate?

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  44. I liked the curved leaf tutorial. Your finished leaf is so true to color, by the end of fall and just before winter the leaves around my house is close in color.

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  45. I love your leaf blocks!! Beautiful! :-) I love dogs too! I grew up with a half beagle/half basset named Bugle. :-) I currently have two shelties, Mandy and Kolby. :-)

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  46. great tut and finished blocks. sew many differnt ways to make sew many new blocks I will have to try this out soon. thanks for sharing a new to me technique.
    in stitches

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  47. I love your leaf blocks!! Thanks for the wonderful tutorial!!!

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  48. Nice leaves, thanks for sharing.

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  49. Thank you for your tutorial. I still have a project from earlier this year with curves and could have used your tutorial. Lovely fabric choices for your leaves. Creative! Thanks for sharing...Judith, Texas

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  50. Wow! Your leaf block is awesome! Thanks so much for showing the technique! I'm following! Thanks for participating in the blog tour and inspiring us today!!

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  51. Love the leaf block tut! I am a little wary of curved stuff yet, but you've got me closer! Thanks for sharing and I look forward to seeing more of your work and the pups!

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  52. Nice tutorial! The green leaves will become a wonderful quilt when finished! Thanks for sharing.

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  53. Love all those leaves and how you improv sew them. I'm gonna have to give some a try...now that I have a nice little tute to help me out.

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  54. Your tutorial makes me think that even I can do this. This sounds like so much fun. Unless the seams would be a problem, a pieced leaf would be pretty. Thank you for taking time to participate and share your creativity. I learn lots from the blog hop and my to-do list keeps growing and growing. Thanks again for taking time to participate.

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  55. Great leaves and tutorial - thanks for sharing.

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  56. Thanks for the great tutorial. You've made it seem attainable. Your leaves are lovely! Thanks for sharing.

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  57. I love your leaves!!! What a great quilt and wonderful tutorial - thank you!!!

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  58. Thank you for showing your leaves, and before I leave you alone I say: Thank you for the great tutorial and sharing!

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  59. Thanks for sharing your talent and tips. I like the scrappy leaf.

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  60. The leaf tutorial is great! I will have to give it a try. Your leaf hop has reminded me I need to quilt a top that belongs to a neighbor's late sister in the town where I use to live. Her sister appliqued maple leaves onto blocks and then sewed the blocks together. The pattern was in a woman's magazine - Family Circle maybe? I have got to get that quilt done!

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  61. Wow, great tute! Finally, something to do with all those fall scraps! Thanks for sharing it.

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  62. OMGoodness, I leaf what you did. Thanks for sharing, prayers for your mother and family, looks like the retreat was successful for you. :)

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  63. Great block! Thanks for the tutorial.

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  64. Beautiful leaves and a great tutorial!

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  65. Hiya! Very nice tutorial, I need to work on my curves. Thank you for sharing. Blessed be, hugs!!!

    playamom57 at yahoo dot com

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