Monday, 15 July 2013

Pleasant Pheasant

I have fallen seriously behind with my Star of Africa Bee blocks, so this weekend I have ignored all of the other projects littering my table and only had eyes for a Star of Africa block :)

Part of the reason for the backlog with this Bee, is that each block is different and depends upon the theme requested by the Queen Bee for the month. The standard of blocks produced by the other Bee members is so high, that my brain freezes every month trying to come up with something appropriate. Once I have come up with an idea it then takes me even longer to work out how to put it into practise!

In April, Cindy asked us to make a block that reminds us of home. I had already made Sana a block of the Angel of the North when she asked for a block to represent coming home.

Angel of the North block

So I needed to come up with something different for Cindy. Time to get my brain in gear!

After pondering over and discarding lots of ideas, I finally decided that the family of pheasants who live at the bottom of our garden were the ideal reminder of home, so I would try to represent a male pheasant in my Bee block.

I can't take any credit for this photo sadly, as they fly off every time I try to take one ;(

The male pheasant is frequently seen strutting his stuff in the garden in the morning, and has a very self-important and puffed up air about him as he does so :) The much smaller female seems to trail along in his glorious wake!

Deciding what to do is only half of the battle with these Bee blocks, the next, and much harder, bit is working out how to do it.

After weeks of deliberation (or procrastination depending upon your viewpoint) and the discovery of the perfect fabric for his plumage in my stash, I finally got down to business and sketched out an applique outline for the block.


Applique Pheasant block


And here he is!

The applique pieces were fused to the background fabric with Steam-a-Steam and then free-machine embroidered around the edges to add definition and reinforce the bond. Cindy asked us to add our name and location to the block background so I embroidered these on once the applique was complete.

I am delighted with how this turned out and think that I might use the applique pattern to make a cushion cover for the autumn.

Next up is a postcard block for Leanne, the block should represent anything you might find on a postcard from your neighbourhood, so more wracking of brains required :)

I can definitely call myself a slow blogger in respect of the Star of Africa Bee, so I am linking this post up to this month's link party, which is hosted by Martha, and to the Let's Get Acquainted Link party, which is hosted this week by Em

Knotted Cotton  plum and junehttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/-yBA0dP9XZiY/TdlBWrZfbOI/AAAAAAAAAcM/mjC0IDWrqZY/s1600/BOM+Button.jpg

Fresh Poppy DesignQuilter in the Closet

29 comments:

  1. Your pleasant pheasant is brilliant! I love the way you have used the fabric!

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  2. Oh your pheasant block turned out beautifully!

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  3. Your pheasant block is brilliant! It really does almost look like a photo. The angel of the north block must have been before my time and although it's quite abstract I instantly recognised it (before I read a word) brilliant!

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  4. lucky you having pheasants at the bottom of your garden! The block looks fabulous–really cheerful.

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  5. He looks amazing and it's your choice of fabric and colour that makes it so special. You're right too, what a great cushion this would make :)

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  6. This is fabulous! The fabrics are perfect for his lovely plumage. I love the fact that he is running off somewhere.

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  7. Wow he is positively glowing! Well done!

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  8. I've done very little applique...........your pheasant is amazing, the colours are perfect, he would make a perfect autumn cushion.

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  9. I'm so very envious of lucky Cindy! This is a marvellous block!

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  10. He is lovely. I know what you mean about inspiration though, as soon as I am given a subject my mind goes annoyingly blank.

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  11. He is lovely. I know what you mean about inspiration though, as soon as I am given a subject my mind goes annoyingly blank.

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  12. Your pheasant block is amazing! So beautiful. Your fabric choices are absolutely genius. Love it. Well done!!

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  13. Wow, he is gorgeous! What a fabulous block.

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  14. Excellent fabric for the pheasant, glad you got it worked out in the end :o)

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  15. My experience of oheasants is that they're very silly birds who love to wander on roads and cause chaos ... yours looks altogether more intelligent and spritely! It's a lovely block.

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  16. Fabulous pheasant! it is amazing!

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  17. I love that you have him running! He is perfect!

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  18. he's brilliant! im way behind on even visiting the group, let alone making any blocks )-:

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  19. wow, that's amazing! you are such an artist

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  20. Your pheasant brought a big smile! He is charming:-)

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  21. Replies
    1. Thanks Sarah! He is much more glorious in real life :)

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  22. What a gorgeous pheasant you've made! The fabric really looks like a pheasant's plumage.

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    1. Thanks Elizabeth, I knew I would find the perfect use for that fabric one day :)

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  23. Wow....you are so talented. I love your pheasant!

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  24. Love your pheasant... it looks very real!

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  25. Your pheasant is fabulous! The colors are beautiful and I love that he is running. I also have to tell you that your title reminded me of one of my all time favorite children's books, Shrek by William Steig (only slightly related to the movies)... there is a line where the title character says, "Pheasant, peasant? What a pleasant present!"

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  26. Wow, Fiona!! That fabric for the pheasant is amazing. And I"m seriously impressed with how well you got the stripes coordinated on Angel of the North.

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