Celebrations blog hop

When it was suggested that the Bloggerati might like to take part in another blog hop, I thought I was prepared. I then saw what the topic was – Celebrations, and in looking at the list of suggested elements we might like to tackle, I knew immediately what I was going to pick – and I knew exactly how I was going to tackle the block – I knew what techniques I would employ!

The celebration aspect I chose was confetti. I have been saving little pieces of fabric for just such occasions. I am loath to throw any piece of fabric away, no matter how small; this leads to an overflowing scrap pile. However, on this occasion, my saving nature pays dividends. I have kept small pieces of fabric together in one place – the pieces that have been used for fusible applique previously, and still have some fusible material on them. These little pieces are ideal, as they can be snipped into little pieces to look like confetti. The only thing you have to be wary of, is getting the snippings the right way up on the fabric; if they are fusible side up they will stick to the bottom of the iron, and then you have to clean the iron!

Fabric left over from cutting out letters for applique
One of my collections of fabric pieces with fusible on it  already
Fabric cut fused and cut for a previous project – I didn’t use it all

When making this block, I noted that I liked the effect at each stage – that is to say, that it looked good after each stage; I could have stopped after each stage without adding anything else. As you can probably tell from the finished block, I am a big fan of embellishment, and it can be difficult to know when to stop. This block could be embellished further with beads and sequins, or buttons.

A little sprinkling
A larger sprinkling
Confetti gun in place with additional stitching

This block is a great opportunity to get out of your comfort zone, to try a different technique, and to use some of those fancy braids, ribbons and threads that you’ve collected from quilting and crafting shows. You know, those embellishments that you buy because you love the colour, but you are not quite sure how or where to use them. I used some sari silk yarn, and also some sari silk cord, as well as silk ribbon. These I had bought at one of the Craft 4 Crafters shows.

The confetti using little snippets is something I’ve wanted to try for a long time. I first read about it in an article in British Patchwork and Quilting magazine, from March 2001 (yes, I have the magazine with the article in!) The article is called “In Praise of the Scrap Basket” by Jenni Dobson. She mentions her confetti applique technique in the last paragraph of the article – along with a reference to her “sweetie jars full of minute scraps”; it wasn’t long after that, that I started sorting my small scraps into sweet jars and old coffee jars. I then visiting Dorking, and found a book by Jenni Dobson: Patchwork, Quilting and Applique. In Chapter 9 (titled Special Effects) she describes her confetti applique technique. She talks about using net to keep the fabric snippets in place, and then use a scribble stitch over the next to hold things in place. In my block, I auditioned different sheer fabrics to decide if I wanted to add something over it. However, on this occasion I decided not to add anything, as it muted the colours of the confetti snippets. You can see the more examples of the sheer fabrics I auditioned in my pattern.

Some sheer fabric from a skirt
I love a bit of bling – especially if it is holographic, but it isn’t right here

It was fun to try this; it always surprises me when the design turns out just like I envisioned it. I hope you enjoy making this block – I would love to see your examples of it. I wonder how it would look with a white or cream background…or a pastel one – the possibilities are endless!

The finished piece, cut to size


    1. Christine Hutchins Post author

      Thank you – and sorry for the late reply. I also like using scrap textiles, although I’ve recently started to question my sanity in saving and collecting all the little pieces, snippets and thread ends. I’m starting to be a little more ruthless with what I keep and what I don’t – but only after holding on to it for a while!