Day 21 Rooster

Here I am three weeks into the Green Man project. When I told 7-year-old grandson Isaac that I was giving myself 100 days to work on it, he thought that was a long time. It’s funny about perception of time, though, isn’t it? The first three weeks have rushed by and I feel like I’ve hardly started.

I’m still waiting for delivery of supplies. (I would not do well in “the good old days” of waiting many months for delivery of a sewing needle, as in this post from a year ago.) In the meantime I persist with other efforts. Last week I started on a rooster project, conceived long before the Green Man was proposed.

My rooster began its life as a hen. I guess that makes it a trans-rooster. A magazine advertisement with a rough drawing of a hen was the starting point. I traced the basic shape, which was about 7″ tall. Using the old-fashioned grid system, I increased the hen’s size, at the same time elongating its neck.

Here is a photo of the rooster sketch. You can see I inserted leg extensions near the bottom of the picture. The fluffy feathery part of the rooster legs is what I call “pantaloons.” Surely there is a correct word for that. 🙂 I taped the drawing to a big window to create a light box effect. 

I do still have some fusible web but of a slightly heavier weight than preferred. After pulling out lots of “maybe” fabrics to cover the rooster, I started out appliquéing on muslin. This is what comes from inexperience.

It’s a reasonably good start, but I had no intention of finishing it on muslin. ??? Okay, moving on from there…

These pieces of fabric are not fused down yet. They’re just placed on top of the tracing paper sketch, which is stitched down to the background I’ll actually use. Again, procedurally, I have things to learn. But it’s coming.

My intention with the 100 Day Project was to spend at least 20 minutes every day on it. In truth, I manage far more than 20 minutes most days, and there have been a handful on which I probably haven’t spent that long. At this point I’m still exploring ideas and technique and materials. I watch videos and look up product specifications. I sort through my stash (again) and prep fabrics. I flip through books on appliqué and story quilts. I google photos for inspiration.

It feels very much like a lot of prep work and not much progress. A lot of thinking and not much doing. However, there is a lot I’m learning, though it isn’t very visible yet. What’s the hardest part? Maybe patience. That, also, is a good thing to practice.

24 thoughts on “Day 21 Rooster

  1. KerryCan

    Your 100-day project makes me think of the “stints” I set up for myself, in order to make progress–30 minutes of walking, 30 minutes of hand quilting, etc., every day Like you, I find that I almost always do more than 30 minutes, once I get started. The difference, of course, is the extent to which you’re pushing yourself to try new things and research and plan.

    1. Melanie McNeil Post author

      Thanks, Kerry. These are things I’ve wanted to try but never carved out the time to do it. I think that is the only real difference here. Last spring I was working on the red and white historical quilt. It had a similar intensity of challenge for me. And boy I was glad when it was done. 😉

  2. snarkyquilter

    Glad you’re taking the Susan Carlson approach to coloring your rooster. Much livelier. I assure you that thinking your approach through before starting will pay off.

  3. katechiconi

    Looks like you have a handsome Wyandotte rooster growing there! There is no one right way to do this, and working out a process that works for you is often the best way. I like this approach because you are using the fabrics to ‘paint’ with, rather than drawing shapes and then cutting them out.

    1. Melanie McNeil Post author

      There will be some shape-drawing, too. But yes, working through it a bit at a time, seems to be how I’m figuring it out. There seems to be a lot to remember, too. :/


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