comparing two African Daisy flower blocks - original and simplified

Arctotis Block Continued

Tags: applique, Arctotis, BOW flower, free motion, pattern

African Daisy flower block in pink

As I was working on my Arctotis block, I decided that this block could be simplified for those who do not like all those pieces - mainly the petals in each flower. So I thought I'd make this block again, this time making an orange flower instead of pink. As I did, I picked up some useful tips that I wanted to share with you.

To simplify this, I drew the complete flower as one piece onto my fusible webbing making sure I drew in all the lines between the petals. Seeing as the layout guide is the actual size I could use this as my template but it does need to be reversed first (that can be easily done by tracing it through to the back of the page). I purposely did not reverse it just to see what sort of issues I came up with... it turns out that I would have been faster to draw those two flowers through to the wrong side of the page first - it would have saved me a lot of time. To get the placement correct I now had to either draw the entire design through to the back or eyeball the positioning.

new arctotis flower fused and cut out
1 flower pressed ready to cut; other flower has lines drawn to right side

So after tracing the design onto fusible web, I cut it out roughly and pressed it to the wrong side of the fabric. I then cut it out. Next I had to draw those lines through to the right side of the fabric. That is easy to do with a light box or by holding the piece up to a window.

new arctotis flower block created with orange flowers
all sections pressed in place (notice it is reversed)

Now that the flower is simplified we can also simplify the shading on each flower. To keep it simple, I only wanted to edge stitch the fabrics - in other words, just the stitching around the edges and not add stitching detail in the petals. To give the flower character however, it really does need more than just edge stitching so I made use of my fabric paint sticks. I used a yellow for highlights and a brown to darken the inner sections of the petals. I also used some orange over areas of the brown where I'd added a little too much.

arctotis block with painted petals
painted petals

This time instead of selecting slightly darker threads, I tried to get closer to the actual fabric color. I chose two orange threads for the flowers, the three greenish/grey threads I used for the leaves on the pink arctotis block, plus two gold, a light and dark to create the center (I only used one fabric center this time).

threads selected ready to stitch the new arctotis block
selected threads for stitching the block

So here is how my finished orange Arctotis looks.

Finished orange arctotis flower block using simplified methods
finished block... it is around the right way here
comparing the pink and orange African Daisies

Which color is your favorite?

Where to find this pattern? Arctotis Flower Block pattern

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