Showing posts with label English Paper Piecing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label English Paper Piecing. Show all posts

Sunday, 9 April 2017

THE NEW PROJECT - La Passacaglia

La Passacaglia - Rosette 1

I thought it was time I started a new English Paper Piecing project.  There were several candidates in the ring, but The Passacaglia by Wyllyne Hammerstein has won.  I thought this was a good project to use my stash, completely massacre it with some fussy cutting, as well as leaving the option open to buy fabric that was considered 'essential' for the project when out and about.  Naturally I was slightly influenced by Wendy's divine interpretation.  Here is my progress so far.  The colour choice seems to be infinite and I have changed my mind so many times already.
Millefiori Quilts Willyne Hammerstein book

Back in the summer I purchased the book and the templates from Sew and Quilt.  There are only five shapes for the whole quilt which keeps it simple, but allows you to stroke fabric all day whilst choosing your colour combinations.  I don't have a particular colour scheme in mind, it will be dictated by my stash and therefore I expect it to grow organically.
Sew and Quilt Acrylic Templates - La Passacaglia
Sew and Quilt Acrylic Templates - La Passacaglia
 So there you go. I think the most difficult challenge will be not losing the acrylic templates!

Joining up with Kathy at Slow Stitching Sunday!

Saturday, 11 March 2017

Jane Pizar Quilt at Cheltenham Art Gallery, UK

Detail - Jane Pizar Quilt Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museums
Detail - Jane Pizar Quilt
Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museums
I have been on a special trip out today.  Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museums were holding an event 'Quilty Pleasures', where a group of us had the opportunity to look at some of the quilts held in their collection. It was just a short visit, but we got to see three very interesting quilts including this one, the Jane Pizar quilt, which I have also heard be called the Cheltenham Quilt.  This quilt is not on regular display and so it was a rare treat to see the staff unroll in front of our eyes.
Detail - Jane Pizar Quilt Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museums
Detail - Jane Pizar Quilt
Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museums
The quilt is understood to be made by Jane Pizar between 1850-1860 in Ireland.  Looking at the front and the back, the majority looked (IMHO) to be English Paper Pieced.  How could I see the back?  Well this quilt is not actually quilted, like many of us, Jane perhaps preferred the piecing to quilting! 

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Dear Jane Quilt - Block G-7 Indianapolis


Dear Jane Quilt - Block G-7 Indianapolis
Dear Jane Quilt - Block G-7 Indianapolis
I am very pleased with this block.  It is the first time I have used my red Kim Diehl fabric.  Also I am very pleased with my striped fabric which has been fussy cut.  I am also very  pleased with the neat circle.  English Paper Piecing - ROCKS.

This block is in the centre of the Dear Jane quilt, so it had to look good.

Living in the UK, I thought I ought to check where Indianapolis was in the USA.  It is in the state of Indiana, towards the East coast.  This is the state Brenda Papdakis was living when she wrote the Dear Jane quilt book.

Techniques: English Paper Piecing
Pieces: 21

Monday, 18 May 2015

Miniature Doll Quilt Swap - May 2015

Miniature Doll Quilt Swap - May 2015 Humble QUilts
Miniature Doll Quilt Swap - May 2015

A few weeks ago Lori at Humble Quilts put out a call for a Doll Quilt Swap. I fancied making a mini quilt.  I fancied doing a swap for the first time.  I resisted the first call, but by the second, I caved in.  So I signed up. There were a few rules, but the main one was that it should be Civil War reproduction fabrics and that it should look like it 'time travelled from days past'. 
Judie Rothermel and Jo Morton Civil War Reproduction fabrics
Judie Rothermel and Jo Morton Civil War Reproduction fabrics
Once committed I went about choosing fabrics and a design for my miniature doll quilt swap.  However, it appears that I don't actually have any Civil War Reproduction fabrics (yes, I was surprised too, perhaps I should have checked first) so it meant searching online for some fabrics and waiting for them to arrive.  To add to the fun I ordered a pot luck  'Civil War bundle' from the Laughing Hedgehog.  I was really pleased with the selection they sent, which included some Jo Morton shirtings and some Judie Rothermel civil war reproduction fabrics.
English Paper Piecing - Irish Chain Quilt
English Paper Piecing - Irish Chain Quilt
 I procrastinated for as long as possible by doing a lot of online research about civil war quilts, but with the unexpected fabric search and knowing I had to send it abroad, panic set in.  I also knew I only had a few windows of opportunity to get the project done.  Finally, I ended up stitching an Irish Chain quilt, hand stitching it using English Paper Piecing.  Living in the UK, my knowledge of the American Civil War is largely based on what I learnt watching 'Gone With The Wind'.  Following through on this theme, Wikipedia informed me that the colours red and green are used symbolically throughout the original book by Margaret Mitchell.  So along with this and Scarlett's Irish descendancy, an Irish Chain seemed appropriate. 
Hand quilting - cross hatch doll quilt swap
Hand quilting - cross hatch
Conveniently, the UK government had decided to have an election early in May which gave me hours of stitching in front of the television watching the results come in through the night. Once hand pieced, I made up the quilt sandwich and I decided to hand quilt it with a cross-hatch, to add that 'days gone past' feel. Naturally this took longer than anticipated as it always does, but it was a joy to do and I am really pleased that I took the time to make this little quilt.
Mini Irish Chain Quilt - Doll Quilt Swap - 16" x 20.5"
Mini Irish Chain Quilt - Doll Quilt Swap - 16" x 20.5"

Just to add to the panic, I noticed on the internet that several quilters taking part in the Doll Quilt Swap had already completed their quilts and had received them.  I am pleased to say that once labelled, this little quilt is now heading across the Atlantic to a recipient who is part of the swap.

Thanks Lori for organising the Doll Quilt Swap!  You will be able to see all the Doll Quilts made in the swap in a few weeks time over at Humble Quilts.

Joining up with Confessions and Crazy Mom Quilts.
 

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Update #3 November

Nearly Insane Quilt - November 2014 update
Nearly Insane Quilt - November 2014 update
It's hard to believe you can be exhausted from sitting hand stitching all day, but last night as I made the last few stitches to get my Nearly Insane quilt blocks together all I could think about was going to bed.  The construction of this has taken longer than anticipated, but as you will see from the picture all the blocks, sashing and cornerstones are together.  If you look back a few posts you may also be able to play 'spot the difference', as several of the blocks have been changed partially or completely.

English Paper Piecing - Nearly Insane Quilt
English Paper Piecing - Nearly Insane Quilt
All the paper is still in and I imagine it will probably take me three months to remove all that!

Nearly Insane Quilt - November 2014 update
Nearly Insane Quilt - November 2014 update

When I started this project I now realise I partly imagined that once I had reached this stage it would be done, but todays project is to start get the borders together and there is still quite a journey to go.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Constructing the Nearly Insane Quilt - Update #1

 
Nearly Insane Quilt - Construction
Nearly Insane Quilt - Construction
I have been working on a few different projects lately so I just wanted you all to know that the Nearly Insane Quilt has not been forgotten.  This is the progress so far in terms of putting it together. I love the look as each row gets added, but it takes a long time when you are hand sewing.  What I have done so far seems to be just a drop in the ocean for this stage.

Nearly Insane Quilt (reverse) - English Paper Piecing
Nearly Insane Quilt (reverse) - English Paper Piecing

I thought I would show you a picture of the back.  Yes, all the English paper pieces are still in which is allowing me to keep it dead straight and dead flat.  Until the moment when it is ready to be quilted I am really reluctant to remove the paper, the bias on this quilt is CRAZY!

The stitching on this is SO slow that I am almost a day late for Slow Stitching Sunday  but right on time for Deign Wall Monday.

Monday, 19 May 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 70

Block 70 - Nearly Insane Quilt Saliinda Rupp
Block 70 - Nearly Insane Quilt
I feel as if I have really started the countdown towards the end of the Nearly Insane Quilt blocks now. I am even thinking that my next update will be when they are all complete!  Over the past year all this experience has helped me fine tune my design skills using tone, and I have really gained specialist knowledge about red and white fabrics on the current market!
Block 70 - red and white fabrics
Block 70 - red and white fabrics
For Block 70 I have managed to squeeze eight different fabrics into the 6 inch square, covering all shades from dark to light (all listed at the bottom of this post) - a real exercise in tone.  Even so, now it is finished there are still changes I would make ...
English Paper Piecing - Nearly Insane Quilt
English Paper Piecing - Nearly Insane Quilt
This is another star block, all done by English paper piecing.  I will admit that if I had been doing this project on the sewing machine there is no way I would have got this far.  As you know some of the pieces are really small, and I wouldn't have been able to even handle them under the machine.  EPP has made it a very pleasant journey. It doesn't just have to be hexies!

Block 70 - Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 70 - Nearly Insane Quilt

NUMBER OF PIECES:  53
DIFFICULTY: 1/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Triangle 3/4" (20mm) x 9/16" (15mm) x 9/16" (15mm)

LARGEST PIECE: Triangle 3" (76mm) x 2  1/8" (53mm) x 2  1/8" (53mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Polka Party III by Holly Holderman, Lakehouse Drygoods (#03035)
Red Garden Pindot by Michael Miller Fabrics 

Spraytime (Scarlet) by Makower #2800-R06
Apple Line Red Swirl by Alice Kennedy for Timeless Treasures  # C5710
Homeschool Mini Mono Floral Red, LB Krueger for Windham Fabrics SKU# 35182-3
Cherry Sketch Basic Collection by Timeless Treasures #C8224
White floral on red (unknown)
Days Gone By Exclusively Quilters

Friday, 16 May 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 54


Block 54 - Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 54 - Nearly Insane Quilt
I have been waiting for a block in my Nearly Insane quilt where I would have an excuse to use my red peppermint fabric again and Block 54 is the lucky one!  I do love a good novelty fabric.  Whilst they don't always reach the sales counter with me, I always take time in a quilt shop to check I am not missing anything special. I particularly like the food ones - do you have any that you look out for?


Pearlescent star fabric
Pearlescent star fabric

Also, as it was a star block, I felt it was appropriate to use a new pearlescent star fabric that has joined my fabric stash.  It makes a change from calico, and I am hoping that when the whole quilt is finished the little dots of shimmer will add to the overall effect.

Block 54 - Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 54 - Nearly Insane Quilt
BTW - I have added a search button for my blog on the sidebar.  I think it is mainly for me to keep track of these blocks - better late than never!

Another block, another Whoop Whoop!.  Also joining Crazy Mom Quilts!

NUMBER OF PIECES:  41
DIFFICULTY: 1/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Triangle 3/4" (20mm) x 9/16" (15mm) x 9/16" (15mm)

LARGEST PIECE: Triangle 3" (76mm) x 2  1/8" (53mm) x 2  1/8" (53mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Holiday Treats Red Packed Peppermints, Timeless Treasures
Red Garden Pindot by Michael Miller Fabrics 
Spraytime (Scarlet) by Makower #2800-R06
Days Gone By Exclusively Quilters

Friday, 9 May 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 75

Block 75 - Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 75 - Nearly Insane Quilt
I think this is the last of the blocks with a gazillion pieces - well, 153 this time.  As I have said before, these complex mega-piece 6" blocks have been my favourite throughout the Nearly Insane Quilt journey - I am almost sad to think that this is the last one.  When I am doing these complex blocks the pattern builds up as you add each stage. It makes me want to embark on a medallion quilt - maybe that could be the next project?
Block 75 Centre - Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 75 Centre - Nearly Insane Quilt
This is the centre of the block.  The cornerstones are just 1/4" square - tiny!  As the border is also only 1/4" wide, I fussy cut a Pinking Shear stripe from my Mama Said Sew collection to add a bit of interest.  Fussy cutting is becoming a more familiar feature in my patchwork these days.
Block 75 Original pattern
Block 75 Original pattern
This is a photo of the original pattern in Liz Lois Nearly Insane Quilt pattern book.  You may have noticed that I have made a few changes to the original block.  I have altered the direction of the half square triangles ... and the shape of the triangles ... and the squares in the middle ... and have added some some cornerstones. I'm really pleased with the result.
Block 75 visits Caerhays Castle, Cornwall
Block 75 visits Caerhays Castle, Cornwall

With so many pieces, it has taken a while to complete the block, so Block 75 is one of the more well-travelled blocks.  Here you can see it visiting Caerhays Castle in Cornwall, as I managed to complete a few more miles on the Cornish coastal path with my sister over the Bank Holiday weekend.

It's Friday today, so time to link up with Crazy Mom Quilts for a Friday Finish, and a Whoop Whoop!


NUMBER OF PIECES:  153
DIFFICULTY: 2/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Square 1/4" (6mm) x 1/4" (6mm)

LARGEST PIECE: Triangle 1 5/8" (42m) x 1" (26mm) x 1" (26mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Polka Party III by Holly Holderman, Lakehouse Drygoods (#03035)
Red Garden Pindot by Michael Miller Fabrics 

Spraytime (Scarlet) by Makower #2800-R06
Cherry Sketch Basic Collection by Timeless Treasures #C8224
Red pindot on cream (unidentified)
Pinking Shears Cream Apple Red, Mama Said Sew, Sweetwater, Moda
Redwork Rendevous by Alex Anderson for P and B Textiles
Tried and True Raindrops Garnet(04273) by Nanacy Halvorsen, Benartex

Friday, 18 April 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Easter 2014 Update

Nearly Insane Quilt Progress - April 2014
Nearly Insane Quilt Progress - April 2014
Happy Easter! High days and holidays are always a good excuse to lay out all my Nearly Insane quilt blocks and have a review of what stage I am at.  So far this is 14 months worth of hand stitching, and at the current progress I expect all the blocks to be completed by the beginning of August 2014.

Red and White Nearly Insane Quilt - April 2014
Red and White Nearly Insane Quilt - April 2014
Without a design wall, taking the progress photo is becoming increasingly difficult, but you can get the idea from this photograph that there are just about 13 full blocks to go.  I don't think I have done any sashing this time around, but I have made background progress on the border, and the canoe block cornerstones, just nothing completed to count this time.  In fact looking at this photo, a bit of effort on my part for some extra sashing would have made this stage look even MORE complete.

Nearly Insane Quilt blocks - April 2014
Nearly Insane Quilt blocks - April 2014
Just a reminder if you are visiting for the first time, the work so far has been entirely hand stitched using the English paper piecing technique.  This stack of blocks are just screaming out to be put together, and I hope that in the next few weeks everything is in place for me to start doing just that.  
Nearly Insane Quilt - Electric Quilt Software
Nearly Insane Quilt - Electric Quilt Software
The Electric Quilt layout has been updated on the side bar, and the remaining blocks look very few and far between.  As I said in a post a few days ago, the Electric Quilt software is a perfect partner for this project, especially if you feel as if you have it sitting there and haven't used it as much as you imagined you would once you first bought it, as was my case.  It is a real opportunity to navigate your way around the package.

Nearly Insane Quilt - Red and White
Nearly Insane Quilt - Red and White
Here are the statistics for the quilt so far ....
Blocks = 72
Edge blocks = 23
Cornerstones =49
Half Cornerstone = 15
Sashes = 135
Border Units = 13

And here are the sums for how many pieces I have done so far. 
Blocks and Edge Blocks = 4101
Cornerstones = 441
Half Cornerstones = 90
Sashes = 135
Border Units = 52
TOTAL = 4819
Joining up at Sarah Did It! for all you English paper piecers at Help for Hexie-aholics , Whoop Whoop Friday (keep 'em coming!), and Crazy Mom Quilts.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 27 LeMoyne Star

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 27
Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 27
If I am honest, the star blocks in the Nearly Insane quilt have not been my favourite.  Block 27, a Le Moyne Star, has just 16 pieces, but I still managed to mess up cutting out the asymmetric star points, not once, but twice!  I am hoping to learn by my mistakes ...   Putting it together was fine, and in keeping with the new regime, it has been labelled and logged.

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 27
Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 27
You may be able to see that I have also used the pearlescent spot Holly Holderman fabric as the neutral to add a bit of interest.  It had temporarily moved out of my Nearly Insane fabric stash to join my Celtic Solstice stash, and it took the recent sort out to bring it back to the fold.

As you know, I always keep statistics for each of my blocks, stating the largest and smallest piece.  Whilst there are different shapes in this block, they all have exactly the same area, so are all the same size.

I am enjoying a bit of an Easter break, so we all get to benefit from more sewing and more blogging from Fabadashery.  I am keen to do a non-Nearly insane project - I will keep you posted.

NUMBER OF PIECES:  16
DIFFICULTY: 5/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Square 1 1/2" (38mm) x 1 1/2" (38mm)
LARGEST PIECE: Square 1 1/2" (38mm) x 1 1/2" (38mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Chloe's Closet 30's Playtime - Red Flowers
Polka Party III by Holly Holderman, Lakehouse Drygoods (#03035)
Red Garden Pindot by Michael Miller Fabrics 

Monday, 17 March 2014

International Quilt Day - Report

Suzi the cat on the Butterfly Quilt
Suzi the cat on the Butterfly Quilt
This is how International Quilt Day started out here at Fabadashery.  Suzi the cat lay on top of the butterfly quilt, whilst I lay underneath it, browsing quilt blogs and online quilt shops on my iPad.  I had a good browse of  What's New at the Fat Quarter Shop, and enjoyed a thorough read of some of the blogs I follow.
International Quilt Day - The Quilt Show - Free for 24 hours!
International Quilt Day - The Quilt Show - Free for 24 hours!
Like last year, The Quilt Show was celebrating International Quilt Day by offering access to their quilty shows for free for 24 hours.  It was great seeing quilters in action.  I knew many of the names, like Gwen Marston and Jenny Beyer and it wasn't too long until I was adding their books to my Wish List on Amazon. I also spent a lot of time watching the longarm quilt episodes ...
Nearly Insane Quilt blocks
Nearly Insane Quilt blocks
With my Nearly Insane blocks needing to be done, I felt I could justify a bit of multi-tasking, by watching the TV and keeping up with my English paper piecing, and over the day I managed three blocks, which I will tell you about in due course.
Suzi the cat busy supervising in the workroom
Suzi busy supervising in the workroom
We had such a great time, Suzi says "Why can't it be International Quilt Day, every day?"

Check out all the other crazy quilty cats every Friday at Sarah Did It!

Monday, 10 March 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 24

Block 24 - Nearly Insane Quilt, visits Dartmoor National Park, Devon
Block 24 - Nearly Insane Quilt, visits Dartmoor National Park, Devon
I have been out and about again with my Nearly Insane Quilt blocks.  This time Block 24 had a trip to Dartmoor National Park, in Devon over the weekend.   Even with all the rain we have had over the past month, the moors were quite dry, and I even caught the sun on my face. It was a beautiful day - just look at that blue sky.
Block 24 - Nearly Insane Quilt, visits Dartmoor National Park, Devon
Block 24 - Nearly Insane Quilt
The block isn't too bad either!  Flying geese and stripes all round.  The flying geese can become a bit  bulky, but the square pattern of this block helped to keep things lined up.  A nicely balanced block.

English Paper Piecing - Nearly Insane Quilt
English Paper Piecing - Nearly Insane Quilt
If you are new to this blog, here's a photo of the back of the block, showing you the English paper pieces, and also to give a sense of scale of these completed 6 inch blocks.  At some time in the future, all the blocks will be sewn together, and quilted together in the quilt, so all this work will be hidden.

NUMBER OF PIECES:  89
DIFFICULTY: 2/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Triangle  7/8" (21mm) x 5/8" (15mm) x 5/8" (15mm)
LARGEST PIECE: Square  1 1/4" (31mm) x 1 1/4" (31mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Red Garden Pindot by Michael Miller Fabrics 
Red and white stripe - unidentified
Designer Beads (Red) Freespirit for Westminster Fibers

Calico

Joining up with Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times and Connie at Freemotion By the River.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 73

Block 73 - Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 73 - Nearly Insane Quilt
This is Block 73 ... I have moved onto the next draw if you don't mind.  Only 25 pieces to this cute Nearly Insane quilt block, so EPP made it nice and easy to do whilst watching Sunday night TV.  It went together so nicely that I can't wait to do the next one.

Block 73, Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 73, Nearly Insane Quilt
I like the way the fabric patterns are graduating towards the centre.  It will look even better when the green stitches are out. 

Floral Gatherings Shirtings, by Primitive Gatherings for Moda
Floral Gatherings Shirtings, by Primitive Gatherings for Moda


Also, I have finally managed to get my hands on the Floral Gatherings Shirtings, that go with the other Floral Gatherings selection I already have.  These are lovely tiny prints - there are even a few red and white ones which aren't too late to make it into this quilt.

Linking up with Design Wall Monday.

NUMBER OF PIECES:  25
DIFFICULTY: 1/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Triangle  1 7/16" (36mm) x 1" (25mm) x 1" (25mm)
LARGEST PIECE: Triangle  2 3/4" (71mm) x 2" (50mm) x 2" (50mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Calico
Chloe's Closet 30's Playtime - Red Flowers
"Friendship" (Tonal Red) by Howard Marcus for MODA (Collections For a Cause) # 46130
Red Sprig on Cream (Unidentified)

Friday, 21 February 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 3

Block 3 , Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 3 , Nearly Insane Quilt
No time to stop, I need to get these blocks done.  Block 3 of the Nearly Insane Quilt was a nice little easy one to get things back on track.  I have also been designing, cutting and packing up my little travel packs, so that I have to excuse for idle hands.
Unpicking English paper piecing ...
On my year review I realised that there were a few blocks that could do with a revamp, so if they are not too much trouble, I am hoping to make a few improvements here and there.
Block 36 was the first to be done.  I just had to unpick the four corner pieces, cut out four more pieces of fabrics and get them sewn back on.

Block 36, getting a make-over! Nearly Insane
Block 36, getting a make-over!
Somehow the red corners seem to bring the block together, more than the original design.  It didn't take long, but I know there are some that need a bit more work than this.

I have also been starting to consider how I will quilt this special quilt.  It has required a lot of research and consideration of how I get my tops quilted in general. Any thoughts?

NUMBER OF PIECES:  44
DIFFICULTY: 1/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Square  3/16" (10mm) x 3/16" (10mm)
LARGEST PIECE: Square  1 1/2" (39mm) x 1 1/2" (39mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Cherry Sketch Basic Collection by Timeless Treasures #C8224
Red Garden Pindot by Michael Miller Fabrics 
Spraytime (Scarlet) by Makower #2800-R06

Chloe's Closet 30's Playtime - Red Flowers
Calico

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Nearly Insane Quilt - Block 45

Block 45 - Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 45 - Nearly Insane Quilt
I mentioned in a previous post that Block 45 had caused a bit of a stoppage to the progress of the quilt.  It looks like a simple block, after all, it only has 44 pieces.  I  cut out all the paper templates, the fabric, and covered them.  However, once I started hand sewing them together, something was going SERIOUSLY wrong.  The shapes were not matching and were jutting out beyond the edge.  I knew I had to be careful with this block, as some of the edge pieces are asymmetrical, so you have to make sure you have them the right side.  But it looked like I had this correct. 
In the bin!
The mystery led me back to the pattern I had draw up in Electric Quilt, which is where I found the problem.  One of the lines I had drawn was not quite parallel to the others, making some diamonds distorted.  I tried to work out which pieces were causing the problem, to replace them, but it became so frustrating that I decided the safest approach would be to ditch the whole lot in the bin and start again. Is it a coincidence that it is a Lone Star pattern, very similar to Block 43, another previously troublesome block? 
Block 45, Nearly Insane Quilt
Block 45, Nearly Insane Quilt
To let the dust settle, I  moved onto Block 8, which with its 193 pieces I found much easier!  Then I made sure I had an accurate template, and chose a new set of fabrics.  It still caused a few problems during its construction. I don't know why. Anyway this block has been done (almost twice!). As a result, it gets a rare 10/10 for difficulty.

NUMBER OF PIECES:  44
DIFFICULTY: 10/10
SMALLEST PIECE: Triangle  11/16" (18mm) x 1/2" (13mm) x 1/2" (13mm)
LARGEST PIECE: Triangle  3" (76mm) x 2 1/16" (54mm) x 2 1/16" (54mm)
TECHNIQUE: English Paper Piecing (EPP)
FABRICS:
Cherry Sketch Basic Collection by Timeless Treasures #C8224
Ivory on Red Cameo Bud Yardage # 14764 Midwinter Reds by Minick and Simpson, Moda
100 Red/White Sweet Hearts Stof - Quilters Basics Calico