Block 5-The Elephant
What child was ever known who did not like the elephant? Because of the universal fondness for the beast, Aunt Nancy chose the gray elephant for the fifth or E block in the alphabet quilt.
Joan squealed with delight when she saw the pattern. “Oh, I did want an elephant, Aunt Nancy, I am so glad you put one in.”
It must be confessed that the club members expressed their doubts about the shape and anatomy of this elephant, but Nancy told them that her creature was a modern one, low slung and somewhat shapeless. “But you will thank me for making the beast this shape when you come to appliqué it. I tell you it’s no fun to appliqué a curved and crooked piece of goods.” They agreed with her, so they withdrew their objections and started work.
**repeated instructions here for tracing the block and creating the templates, and embroidering the letter R**
For the elephant they all agreed in choosing gray. One member had two shades of fast color gray gingham in her piece bag so she made the ear a deeper shade. Most of the members used only one color. Sometimes they chose figured prints, but since the elephant is a huge animal with a hide of neutral, inconspicuous gray they felt that they could not better Nature.
While they embroidered the letters they discussed women who were large and who had failed to profit from the lesson of the elephant. “Imagine,” said one of the members “what a monster the elephant would look if she were clothed in splashy pink and green or even orange.”
After the paper pattern had dried, the pattern was cut out. In cutting it from the cloth a quarter inch allowance was make for turning under. The whole elephant was cut first.
Then the ear was cut out and later laid on top of the elephant’s body. Then the tusk was cut. Yellow was used for the tusk. The quarter inch edge was turned under on all three pieces, basted and pressed in place. Then the pieces were laid on the white block according to the penciled outline. After the body was appliquéd with fine, invisible, slanting hemming stitches, the ear was laid on, basted and appliquéd.
Then the tusk was put in place. The eye was worked in yellow outline stitch and the tail was done in gray, fast color embroidery cotton.
In cutting pieces for the tusk, Nancy discovered that a tiny square tip at the end was easier to turn under to a point than a piece cut pointed at the start.