Thursday, June 15, 2023

Rainbow Neighbourhood Flimsy mostly done!

Hi and welcome to week 435 of Free Motion Mavericks. I've put in many, many hours this week getting my Rainbow Neighbourhood Houses assembled into a community 😊 It's looking good, even if many details need to be added and stitched on.

Flimsy assembled and mostly finished!

Rainbow Neighbourhood Houses quilt top assembled!

I worked on the first row and then the third. It took me about half the time to finish the third row, since by then, I knew what I was doing 😊 You can't really tell from this photo (sorry, in the evening off the stairs railing), but each row is progressively wider! There are at least 3 inches between the width of the first and the third row. 

Row 1

Row 3

In the second row, I started by finishing my friends' home. I added a thin sliver of fabric on the other side of the door - it was bothering me too much! I used fusible webbing and stitched it down with a zigzag stitch. Once it's all quilted, it will look fine!

House with door fixed and a forest in the back

I wanted to make the trees, and since I had recently done two wonky stars, I used the same technique to make the 4 trees. A couple of them are straight but the other two are quite wonky. It looks a little weird in the open like that but I'll be adding critters and plants, so it'll look fine!

Making Wonky Trees

Here's a quick look at how I made the trees.

Wonky Tree

Start by folding your piece of fabric in two, so that you know where the top centre needs to meet. For this tree, I used a 3" x 3" square fabric, but it doesn't have to be square.

Fold your fabric to find the centre

Get a piece of background fabric - if you haven't done this before, make your background fabric the same size as your green fabric. Once you've done this a few times, you can use small pieces of fabric. 
Place your background fabric over your green fabric, facing each other, with your background covering the bottom corner going to the centre (see photo). Stitch.

Add your background fabric

Flip your background fabric over. It should go from the centre top to the bottom right side.
Flip your background fabric and press.

With the background fabric extended, turn the block face down and trim the background fabric around the original green block. 

Trim the background fabric

Take another piece of background fabric and cover the other bottom side to the centre. Sew it down.

Sew the second background piece down

Flip the background fabric and trim. You can also trim the excess green fabric behind the background fabric.
Next comes a stump for your tree. You'll need a piece of background fabric the same width as your tree. Cut it in half at the centre.

Cut the background fabric in half for the stump

Cut a piece of brown fabric for your stump. It needs to be the same height as your background fabric. The width should be a half inch wider than your stump to allow for your seams. Stitch the background fabric to both sides of the stump. Press.
Sew the stump to the tree tip. Press.

Add the stump to your background fabric

Only use this method if you don't mind having crooked trees....just like in nature. Otherwise, use Sandra's instructions.😁 Here are my wonky trees.

Wonky trees

Adding extra elements in the second row

In the quilt design from my last post, you may have noticed a lake between the two houses in the middle row. I have the outlines done but details will be added both through appliqué and in the quilting.

Lake area

Here's a close-up of the fabric - too cute!

Flower garden and then a path in the woods

Right now there is only a lake, but it will have a beach, fish and a dock. There will also be other critters and plants around the gardens. 

More flowers and a rock garden

As you can see, I'll be spending the next few days adding details to the quilt top and then FMQ (free motion quilting) it. 

I was able to get out between the rain, wind and are some better pictures of my flimsy.

One flimsy ready to appliqué and FMQ

Gotta love those backyard fence pictures 😊

What I learned
  • I thought that I had tons of time to finish the flimsy, but that central part took a lot of time, mostly looking at my stash to see what fabrics I wanted to use. 
  • I'm looking forward to adding the fun stuff to the quilt. 
  • I will probably end up removing the excess fabric on the right side of the quilt - it will still be fine. I knew that I was accuracy challenged, but that's by a lot! 
  • I enjoyed making those wonky trees. They wouldn't get by the quilting police but it's all good fun!
  • The next part, stitching down the appliqués and adding elements, is fun but I always struggle with what needs to be appliquéd before quilting, and what can be done while quilting. If you have any advice, I would appreciate it!

Related links
Linking parties
I'll be linking up to many fun linking parties, including Sandra's Rainbow Neighbourhood Houses party. I'm looking forward to seeing everyone's flimsies! Design Wall Monday, Sew & Tell, Midweek Makers, Put Your Foot Down, Finished (or not) Friday, Off The Wall Friday, Beauties Pageant, Peacock Party

Free Motion Mavericks

Thanks to everyone who linked up 😊.

Melva finished her Rail Fence quilt and went to a lovely spot for pictures. 

Melva's lovely Rail Fence quilt

Gail had another finish for the Island Batik's June Challenge. Look at those great feathers among the 92 flying geese! You can get a great look at Gail's feathers from the back of her topper.

Flying geese Topper by Quilting Gail

It's now your turn.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter


  1. Ooh your neighbourhood is wonderful! I especially love the wonky trees—I will definitely send people your way in case the templates scare them. Several years ago I designed some mug rugs that have wonky trees but I hadn’t even thought to mention they could be used here too! You’ve got until June 30 to finish the quilt-you can do it!

    1. Thanks Sandra! I'm afraid that I won't be finished...or even starting the quilting by the deadline. I've just been adding, and adding details to the quilt top. I'm now appliquéing them with Bottom Line thread and really loving the effect. I've ordered two more colours and will quilt them with that.

  2. Andree, I just learned of your site. How fun. I love your houses!!

    1. Thanks Brenda. Sorry for the delay - I can't seem to quilt, blog and reply. I'm looking forward to reading about everyone's creation!

  3. Your neighborhood is wonderful and awesome you are learning too! Thanks for the tutorial on the wonky trees. :)

    1. Hi Pat, you're most welcome. Accuracy I'm not so good at but problem lol

  4. Loving your neighbourhood & like your variations too. Take care.

  5. Your neighborhood is wonderful with all your fun additions. I know it took me awhile to settle on fabrics, just finding the ones with enough in the stash or that worked with the others. It will be fun to see how you keep adding to it.

    1. Hi Kathleen, I'm sorry about being so late to reply. Now that the quilt top is mostly done, I can spend some time catching up with everything else, including visiting the other participants!

  6. LOVE how you made yours into a row quilt! Thanks for sharing how you made those fun wonky trees, Andree. I have a feeling I'll be using that method in the near future! :o))

    1. Thanks! It seems that I can do wonky well :-)

  7. Oh I love your Neighborhood. Thank you for sharing your tutorial on those fun trees.

    1. Thanks Carol. Just catching up, now that the quilt top is done. Busy times :-)


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