Heya Everyone, so glad you’ve stopped by today. While I have owned this domain for nearly 12 years, today is my One Year Anniversary of opening my blog. I’m sew excited and what a fun way to be celebrating it. I am participating in the 52 Blocks Quilt Along. I hadn’t realized when I signed up for this Quilt Along that today was my anniversary, but I’m excited that it just happened that way, and what’s ironic about this, is that one year ago today I opened my blog earlier than planned because I’d jumped into an EQ Blog Hop which was for me, probably the turning point of getting me involved back into quilting again so heavily. If you’d like to participate in this quilt along, please stop over at Persimmon Dreams to read all about it. This bunny block was something I created many many years ago and just kinda forgot about it until I was visiting the 52 blocks quilt along. I was wondering what could I do to participate and then I remembered this block from a quilt I’d made for a friend who was having a baby. As usual, Electric Quilt and Bernina’s Designer Plus Software helped me in creating this block for you today. The basket block in this quilt is part of Electric Quilt and is called the Brittany Block in EQ. I do not know if it’s part of the default blocks or addon blocks. I own every single addon for EQ, so I couldn’t tell you if it is or isn’t. Since it’s pretty basic, I’d say it’s probably a default block. So without further ado, lets get on with the making of this block. This will be a large lesson, not that the block is difficult, but because it encompasses different techniques. I also take a ton of pictures, this lesson has around 70 images total, so that gives you some idea of how intense I can get with the picture taking. I do apologize if any images appear blurry, I always take two of the same image, but sometimes both still appear blurry and I try to choose the best one. For me, I am a machine user, I use my machine in ways that I believe others are only discovering how to achieve, or from what I can see on the world of quilting on the internet, most are not using or doing things in the same way I do them, so I am hopeful I can show you something new here today. First, we’ll start with the creation. Cut your parts from whatever means you use to cut templates. They are provided for you in the pdf file as well as rotary cutting info. Because this was one block, I went with just creating freezer paper templates, but I did cut my pocket just via my 6-inch square block. If your creating the dimensional effects with the ears, and hands, you can then stitch them right sides together and turn them inside out being sure to cut any curves or corners prior to turning inside out. Work the shape with your purple thang or
whatever tool you use to work a shaped fabric object.
For me, I am a strong believer in that pressing is very important when piecing patchwork, whether you use machine techniques or not. Ironing always relaxes the thread, and allows for little bumps to work themselves out so that your shape lays flat. I probably over press, (I don’t mean I leave the iron on to long) but I believe so heavily in the idea that pressing is one of the most important parts of quilting that I strongly encourage you to keep a iron or even the small mini irons by your machine so you can press right away without having to move to an ironing board.
Once all your dimensional pieces are pressed, use the layout template to mark where they go on the pieces so that you can add them as you piece.
This is my finished sample block
In the pieced part of this lesson, in the pdf or the image used to showcase this lesson, it doesn’t show you the pocket added to the triangle. It’s not something EQ will let me do easily. If I added the triangle there, it would just look like a pieced section.
To Create The Pocket
Cut a 5 1/2-Inch Square
Fold it in half like a triangle
If you open it you will see the pressed line. Leave this be, no further stitching is necessary.
How To Piece The Hoppy Bunny Basket
I will first go over the basics of piecing this block, I will then cover the machine embroidery aspect of this block, which really would be done prior to piecing the block. However, because it’s a bonus side of the piecing, most machine embroiderers know it would need to be done prior to piecing.
Once I am done cutting out my template parts, I then lay the block out so I can see it as a block. No it’s not going to be perfect, but it gives you an idea of how it should look. While the pdf does tell you the stitchout order, it doesn’t show you any images. All the images are on this page.
This is how the layout of the block looks prior to stitching it out as a block itself.
Mark where the ears, and hands should be placed with your layout sheet
With the eye and nose parts, you can use a piece of freezer paper to do this by tracing onto the freezer paper then ironing to the back of it, lightly mark on the top of your fabric the placement for nose and eyes.
I haven’t added the pocket to the top yet, so go ahead and add the pocket.
Baste with your machine or by hand the pocket at about a 1/8-inch seam allowance, as well as the hands.
You can also baste the ears into place as well on the basket handles. (I prefer adding them to the handles, because I knew I would end up pressing towards the face). If you don’t want to see your seam under your face, baste the ears onto the face instead so they will press easier towards the handles.
If you used freezer paper to create your templates, this is the point where you can remove them. I used washable freezer paper, so it’s not like I had to remove it, I just chose to remove as much as possible. It doesn’t for me entirely come out, so parts of my template you will see where the freezer paper stuck to much.
I then take sections I can chain piece and piece them together via my machine.
Press before you turn the part up first
Then press the seams which ever way you prefer.
This isn’t a block that has alot of matching points, only the parts on the sides, top and bottoms need to match to a point, so pressing a certain direction is entirely up to you.
Add the face to the basket handle and a background section. If you marked your parts, you should add your ears as shown above between the markings.
You are also seeing here part of my ears are sticking out. This is because when I create my openings then cut around the shapes, I add a bit of a “opening room” on the fabric so it allows me to grab onto something when I’m pulling the fabric thru. For me, it works so much easier to add that. I cut that part off after it’s stitched into place on the block.
I am now preparing to press. You can see here in the green where part of my freezer paper just refused to come off. It will wash out, so I’m not worried in that respect, but it is funny that this freezer paper doesn’t allow for repositioning easily.
Stitch the bottom sections together
Keep adding your parts together until your block is completed.
Using Machine Embroidery Techniques
Cut your shapes that you need, leave the freezer paper on your face and basket parts.
There are 3 embroidery designs in the zip file
One is for creating the face, the dimensional parts and the text on the basket
It doesn’t matter what design you stitch out first because once your finished with all your stitching, you will switch to your regular machine to do the rest of the work.
In Design 2, the dimensional parts for the large ears and hands are created.
If you’ve done applique by machine, you’ll be somewhat familiar with this technique, while it’s not exactly the same, it works much the same way.
Please use a light weight tearaway as your stabilizer.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE Sulky’s Tear Easy Stabilizer for this technique.
I use a dark thread here on purpose, I will later change my bobbin thread colors, but I do this on purpose, because it allows you to see later what stitched out properly. You won’t be able to easily see where to place fabric either if you use white as your placement stitch, so use a color of thread you can see.
What happens here is that a placement stitch out is created first,
While I did give the templates for the dimensional effects in the pdf, I do not use or cut them.
I instead just use scraps of fabric folded over, thus I control my seam allowance, and how its stitched out. I also don’t have to worry as much when I place the fabric onto the stabilizer, because it’s more likely to stay in place than if I used an actual cutout of the template.
Shown above, I’ve added the fabric to the stabilizer.
It will then stitch out.
Add the rest of the fabrics as the color changes happen.
It’s important to note to not following the colorings on the thread charts given for the designs. These charts are given to you more so you will know what is stitching out next, not what color of thread to use.
The color change signifies the ability for you to add the next piece of fabric or that it’s moving to the next shape and that’s all it’s meant to do.
Sometimes, it may be necessary for you to cut some parts off so they won’t stitch into the next part, but in the above image, I’m trying to show you how they do not interfere with the other parts. I did have to make some cuts, but the reality is I did that so you could see cutting done, but really because of how I cut my fabrics I didn’t need to cut any parts out.
Cut all jump stitches front and back. This is an important step, by not cutting them you’ll have to do it when removing the parts from the stabilizer, so it’s just a good habit to get into anyway.
Once you have the dimensional parts done, you can easily tear them off of your stabilizer.
You can see here some of the black thread still shows. It is because it intersects with your own bobbin thread when stitching, however, it’s not part of the seam itself, and doesn’t interfer with the part, so it’s not necessary to totally remove all the bobbin thread, just cut the parts that are hanging lose as I’m showing above.
Ignore my bad theading of the bobbin, I caught that early enough to restitch, but I didn’t remove the old stitching.
Once you remove everything from the stabilizer, press the parts so they lay flat.
As shown in the top part of this document, you now need to cut the seam allowances on the shapes, cut any curves and corners, then use whatever tools you like to turn them inside out. Work the shapes, and press.
Stitching Out the Basket
Stitching the basket out.
Unfortunately, I only own a 6×10 hoop size embroidery machine as my largest sewing hoop. You can’t know how badly I want to be in a larger hoop, but it’s just not feasible for me at the moment.
So, I had to create this part a little differently than the rest of the shapes.
The basket triangle at the top is longer than 10-inches, so it’s not possible to draw the entire part and put it into this hoop size. For those of you with larger hoops, I can redo this for you if you’d like so it’s the full part, but since I don’t know yet who is using my machine embroidery techniques, I haven’t had any queries for changes.
Stitch out your placement stitchout as shown above
If you printed out your block like I did, it will show you the lines to compare, if you haven’t please draw 1/4-inch seam allowances onto your shape. I left my freezer paper on for all the machine embroidery parts.
You can use straight pins to help you match up the lines. I just eyeballed it, because while placement is important I didn’t feel it was absolutely vital on this part.
As you can see above, it’s lined up pretty well.
Allow it to stitch out.
Remove from stabilizer
Remove freezer paper
Now if you use the same freezer paper that I do, you can give it a little tug to try and loosen it.
I didn’t remove any jumps between the lettering on the back.
Working On the face
This shows me removing the freezer paper from the face shape, but in hindsight and because I had to redesign the face 3 times to get it right I would suggest not to do so.
It could be the cotton I used, but I had quite a few bumps on my left eye, so until I got a stitchout that worked fine, I kept redoing the block design.
When I did this the first time, I had previously cut my triangle face part, but again in hindsight, I would do this after the stitchout takes place and instead used a large enough piece of fabric to do the triangle instead.
Stitching the eyes
On my last stitchout and finally the proper digitizing, I did not cut the face
what I have here is a layer of fabric on top of the stabilizer in white. I can’t get a better picture than this.
I also added an additional layer of tearaway medium weight stabilizer as a precaution. I simply slid it under the hoop before I started stitching.
If you used the method where you didn’t cut out the triangle first, you can now cut the triangle
Remove stabilizer, and fabric from hoop, do not remove stabilizer yet.
Line up your placement lines with your ruler, add the 1/4-inch seam allowance (in other words, the placement line is on your triangle placement line and you can then safely cut the seam allowance added to the triangle)
A closer look
and done cutting out
Once the face is stitched out, cut your jumps, front
Remove it from the stabilizer
These two above are the medium weight stabilizer, I did actually cut away around the mouth and nose areas, to avoid the stitches tearing out.
Remove from light weight stabilizer
Adding the fabric for the smaller ears. I simply folded over some scrap fabric, then cut after the stitch out and did the other small ear.
How my stabilizer looked after one of the removals, and easy to use recyclable piece.. Cool!!
Whenever you press over embroidery, you should always use some type of press cloth, so the thread will not end up having an overshine or worse, burn.
Once you have finished with the machine embroidery, you can then move onto the piecing part of the lesson which is near the top of this page.
Once you are finished, what can you do next..
Well we have to decide what to do with the ears.
On my right ear, I stitched the small and large ear to the block
as shown above.
The right ear, has a pin to hold it up placed underneath the pink 🙂
With my right ear, I want to lay it over the face a bit just for some fun
So I stitched just the small ear and the large ear together with a straight stitch up the small pink ear.
Even in the larger image you can’t tell that I stitched this, but I did… what’s odd is that I still had black thread in my bobbin (I will change that) so its’ weird you can’t see it.
and so for fun
While the fiskar blades are definitely a little to heavy, you get to see here how the pocket works.
You can see the black bobbin thread in this picture, I have it pinned in place, but what’s fun here is you can add a pin, a button, a ribbon made into a bow, anything you like to hold the ear in place here. you could even cover one eye if you like. I tried that and didn’t like it as much, but it’s still a thought.
I’m going to add a little fancy stitching to the pocket so it has a separated part, as I don’t like it being that large, but it will be fun to place a bit of candy, flowers, or even some small chocolate bunnies in the pocket and hang on the wall.
Would you like the download for this block?
This is a zip file which includes the machine embroidery files as well.
This is a Free pattern
The pdf file does not contain the text “Hoppy Easter” that you see on the basket. I created this in Bernina’s software and it’s not possible for me to give that to you for hand embroidery.
The idea here tho is that the text for the basket gives you an idea that adding something to the basket is a good idea. It’s such a large part that it almost seems to drown the block without adding something to it.
Even something as simple as lines to make it look like it weaves, or an egg will make it look nice.
The idea is to open your mind to your own creativity and let it flow with your imagination.