This is what the very center of the quilt looks like. You can begin to see how complete circles weave together at the intersections. It will be clearer when the melons are added to the outer edge, but even now it's starting to come together.
I've learned a couple of things so far. One is that this background fabric is not printed symmetrically, so it's hard to cut all the pieces indentically. I'm doing the best I can and going for overall effect rather than absolute identity. Another is that there is a LOT of waste in the cutting. Fortunately www.equilter.com had more yardage, so I've ordered another 10 yards just to be sure I have enough. I've tried a couple of different layouts and they all seem to leave about the same amount of waste, although this one with the light center at least lets me get 2 pieces out of a width of fabric. I've also decided I may vary the layout from the center to the outer edge, enhancing the light-to-dark shading effect.
In the piecing, I've had to make two modifications from the way I did James and Crystal's quilt. One was to make marking templates so I can mark off where the cornerstone seam would be if there was one, since the end of the melon background lines up with that, and so I can mark the center of the arc, since it's not the center of the piece of fabric. I've also had to clip the fabric at the cornerstone seam when I sew the arc pieces together for ease.
In some ways the sewing seems slower than it should be, but I keep forgetting that I'm not doing the tedious paper piecing of the arcs. So If the cutting and marking takes more time, I think I'm still coming out ahead. The main thing is to keep everything labeled and right side up. Thank goodness for sticky notes, highlighting tape, and a good seam ripper.