Have you had the chance to peruse the May/June 2014 issue of McCall’s Quilting magazine? (In case you are wondering, none of my quilts are published in this issue.) Many of the pictured quilts caught my eye, but I was especially drawn to a block design, “Candy Ring.” It’s a modernization of “Dresden Plate,” string piecing on a curve.
Since my scrap bag of strips (1″ to 2 1/2″ wide) is full to overflowing, it is time to make some sort of foundation pieced string quilt! I noted with interest that Kathy Patterson, one of the McCall’s editors, offered an online tutorial of the block. Watching it gave me the practical tips necessary to get started. Click here to view the tutorial.
I printed multiple copies of the foundation arc provided by McCall’s in the pull-out pattern section. Two arcs fit on each 8 1/2″ x 11″ piece of paper.
My Additional Tips:
Use a size 90/14 needle in your sewing machine. Since it punches larger holes, the paper foundation will be easier to remove.
After adding a wedge, crease the paper foundation on the sewing line
and cut away the excess seam allowance from the previous wedge. Creasing the paper, also aids in removing the paper foundation.
Use your really thin strips in the center of the arc. Use 2 1/2″ wide strips on the ends to make sure the last wedge space is totally covered. Some of my final wedges are so thin, the seam allowances will crowd each other when I sew the arcs together.
If you use all the colors of the rainbow, as I did, think about “randomly” scattering the colors that draw your eye: orange, yellow, red. If you begin the arc with a cool color (blue, green, purple), think about ending it with a warm color (red, orange, pink). Then, when you sew the arcs together, a cool color will be sewn to a warm color, thus spreading the warmth around the circle.
As you can see in my example above, I covered the printed side of the foundation. This allowed me to see the guide lines for the seams. However, I discovered that it really is better to cover the unprinted side of the paper foundation because when I turn the arc over to trim away the excess, then I can clearly see the guidelines for trimming.
I’ll keep you posted on my “Candy Ring” progress!