"Lo, Children Are An Heritage of the LORD: and the Fruit of the Womb is His Reward" - Psalm 127:3

Friday, March 25, 2011

Jumping on Two Bandwagons

I love getting stuff like this in the mail :)

I ordered this set of fat quarters from Quilt Taffy (out of Idaho) on Etsy.

Here's a better view of all the fabrics. I've been seeing for awhile people making turquoise and red quilts and knew I wanted to make one too. I'm not sure what I'll do with it, or how big it will be, but I love this color combination. You can kind of see in this picture that several of these fabrics were more toward green than blue. That didn't bother me until I got my hexagons done and noticed how different they are. Too bad. Looks like I need to buy more turquoise fabric ;)

There were a lot of quirky fabrics in this set. Fun. Like these chairs with an occasional bird on them.

There were actually several fabrics with birds on them. Funny thing was that when I cut this fabric and made a hexagon out of it, only the three sets of flowers on the right showed up on the front. On the back I counted 5 birds - ha. Hope it works out so that sometimes birds show and sometimes they don't!

This is my favorite piece of fabric. Love it!

I really like this one too, but it's one of the greener ones, and I haven't decided whether to include those in this quilt or save them for another project.

I like this one too. In fact, I loved the reds. I thought about just doing a red and white quilt because I love all those fabrics. We'll see.

I have also noticed a trend toward everyone making hexagon quilts. I've always admired those because they are 100% hand sewn. When I saw several online tutorials on how easy these are to make using these paper pieces, I ordered a pack and decided to give it a shot.

I ordered the ones which measure 1 inch across each side. They are about 2 inches across the widest part. I've just been cutting 2 1/2 inch squares of fabric with my rotary cutter rather than messing with cutting individual hexagons out with scissors. It's much easier, and doesn't make that much difference in the amount of fabric used.

These are so easy to sew. One blog said to start with the first side folded down and held with a paper clip. That makes it really easy. Only problem was that I could only find one paperclip. Seriously. Who only has one paperclip? That slowed me down some, because I kept losing my paperclip in my lap. Anyway, with a paperclip holding the first side, you then just stitch around, folding down each corner and stitching it in place. I didn't even tie any knots - just took two stitches in each corner instead.

At the end of an hour, give or take, I had 20 hexagons made up (not including cutting time). That's one of each of the fabrics I received. I don't plan to work on this project much right now - too many baby things that need to be finished in the next 97 days. But I wanted to try this technique while it was fresh in my mind. I was surprised by how easy it was, and relaxing, and fast ... relatively speaking.

Here's a rabbit trail: Every day I read one particular blog where the lady does almost all hand quilting - both piecing and quilting, and it's such an inspiration to me ... especially how much she manages to get done every day. Of course we're at different places in life, and she has much more time than I do, but I never read her posts without being really inspired. (That's why I read it every day!) So I figured more hand sewing is in order ;)

On a different note, this is why I hate pre-washing fabrics, and why I rarely do it. I thought though, if I'm going to put all that effort into hand sewing a quilt, I'm not going to have it get messed up because I didn't preshrink the fabric! So, this mess is what I got, and then I spent an hour cutting threads, untangling fabric, and ironing. UGH.

See what a mess of thread I ended up with?

Anyway, once I got my hexagons stitched I wanted to see what they would look like together.

I'm not thrilled with any of these layouts. And when I got them laid out, it was very obvious to me that the greens were much greener than I wanted to include in this quilt. I was going for bold turquoise and bright, true red, with just a bit of white.

You may not be able to tell as much in the photos as I can in person. It doesn't bother me as much in the photos, but it's driving me nuts in person.

This is an arrangement my daughter came up with, and it's pretty good. Better than anything I came up with, but I think it would take a lot more of one color than a the other.

This is another layout that I don't mind as much. We'll just have to see. Now all I want to do is make hexagons, but I really need to get back to working on the baby stuff first. This will be my backup plan for "just in case I get put on bed rest" - which at times sounds lovely... like on Fridays... in the daycare... when everyone is wound up like crazy... and I'm ready for the quiet (relatively) weekend ;) It's not likely though. I've never been on bed rest, and this is baby #5.

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