An Almost Challenge

Posted by on June 9, 2010 in Featured Flag, This And that! | 5 comments

First Attempt at a Tesselation

Well the jokes on me! Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been working on my ‘challenge ‘ entry for the Fast Friday challenge, only to discover that it is blog postings I subscribed to, and not the group itself! And it’s a closed group to boot!Oh well, I’ve completed my first fiberart journal piece I guess. With my dominant hand in a cast for the past month, I’ve spent a lot more time than usual surfing and found this group that gives itself really great monthly challenges. I’ve been following this group for a while and when I saw the specs for the last challenge ‘Fabulous Fungi’, I couldn’t resist. I’ve wanted to try a tessellation piece for ages and I could see mushrooms as a possible shape to use foe a simple shape.

Paper Pattern for a TesselationWell it took me most of a day to discover that I couldn’t make the mushroom shape work effectively with a rectangular shape so switched to working with an equilateral triangle. That was better – I could now see how to make it work. First attempts to measure and draw the required shapes were on track but in tessellations, close doesn’t cut it! I switched to Illustrator in my CS4 Suite but came to the conclusion that I need some tutorials or classes so gave up on that. However the process made me realize that the missing factor was that I hadn’t established the ‘centre’ of the triangle. So back to manual construction!

Freezer Paper Pattern for TesselationThis time with more accurate measurements and the use of a pencil ‘compass’ left over from a geometry set I got some symmetry into my pieces. By mirroring the marked triangle and taping two triangles together, I finally had my pattern piece.

The next step was to choose my complementary color fabric. Because it would take three pieces to complete one repeat of the tessellation, I decided to work with a split complementary and even got out my colour wheel to make sure it was a true complementary set.



Joining Tesselation Pieces

Then the decision of how to construct this piece. I considered using a raw edge approach but didn’t totally trust the accuracy of my cutting ability so decided to leave a 1/4 inch seam allowance around each piece. I used freezer paper templates ironed to the fabric to cut the pieces and then ironed the seam allowance along the cut edge of the freezer paper, clipping curves where necessary.

I left the paper in place while I stitched the straight and gradual curves but left the curves under the cap unstitched. This proved that the piece would lie flat and basically fit together.




Joining pieces of a Tesselation


My lack of finesse with my left hand dictated that I would have to resort to topstitching with invisible thread to join the curves that were unstitched. I decided to combine this step with a straight stitch to outline each mushroom to quilt the piece.






Finishing the edge of



After couching three rows of yarn to the edge, trimming and finishing the cut edge with a double pass of overcasting I was reasonably pleased with the result.



  1. Diane this is fabulous!! And a mushroom tessellation to boot! Great job… as the others have said, with your composition, color etc…Hope to see you soon on the group.
    I am a member too.. 4 years and love it!

  2. I'm a FFFC person and try to comment on the blog. I think you met the challenge wonderfully. Great use of the complementary color scheme and your tesselation is a perfect stylization of fungi.

  3. Diane,
    I love your tesselation! Cool idea and wonderful execution. And you even followed all the rules, which is more than many of us did:)
    Annual openings to the FFFCG are coming up soon – September? I hope you consider joining us.

  4. Pretty cool! I wouldn't have thought of that…Hopefully I can soon turn to my fungi. 🙂

  5. I follow the Fast Friday Challenge as well and have always enjoyed the creative results. I like to think about what I would do if I was entering a project. I love your mushroom tessalation. Great colours, idea and execution.

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