Monday, July 19, 2010

2010 posse challenge

I have posted previously about the Posse Pledge to Finish this year. I have been on track for May and June. Done. In fact, maybe I should get extra credit because I actually made 2 of the June project, one went to my mom and one to my sis for her belated birthday present. So here we are in the last part of July, and no project that has been designated for this purpose. I hate to fall off the wagon so soon! Have been finishing other things, like another Baby Surprise Jacket and a new ironing board cover--
a new pattern by Hemma Design, a local designer who has released 4 new patterns that we have at Bear Patch. This was a very good pattern and will be included in our fall class offerings. The design of this simple utilitarian project makes it superior to many covers because it ties at 3 separate placesto give a good snug fit.
Had one of those rewarding moments while working on this, when I discover that I actually have just the right tool on hand when I need it! So much better than the frustration of threading the ties through the casing by using a safety pin. I used this thingamabob, officially called a drawstring threader, and it was slick!
Not sure where I got it, why, or when, but I did find out that Dritz makes one very similar. So we will be ordering those at the store, too. It's always good to have the right tool for the job.

But I digress! I have pulled out an oldie to fulfill my challenge pledge, although it's doubtful that it will be finished before July is finished! This is a bunch of hexagons that I was experimenting with, and ended up being useful as a little teaching project at more than one retreat to teach English paper piecing.
It's time to bring this project back into the light of day and make use of what's already done. Of course, this means adding more hexagons, because I really think these are kind of drab and need a little punch to make it fun to work on. I started these in batik fabrics, so back to the batik drawer to select a few new colors to add to the mix. And then another brainstorm, as I was sifting through the project box. I found that in addition to the pack of 600 (what was I thinking?) 1" hexagon templates, I also possess a smaller pack of half hexagons and a bunch of triangles. So I was playing around with layout combinations, and thought I would try something different than the traditional "flower" arrangement of the Grandmother's Flower Garden hexagon quilts. I stitched 6 half-hexagons around the center, you can see my sample in this picture--
So I have marked and cut a bunch of pieces so I can work on these whenever I can fit them in. And since it is all done by hand, I can even take it wherever I go, like to San Francisco later this week!
A few tips that I have learned, in case you want to try this yourself:
get yourself a pack of die-cut paper pieces , they aren't expensive and save you the time involved in drawing and cutting your own.
Make yourself a little plastic template that is approximately 1/4" larger all around the hexagon (or other shape). I just glued one of the paper pieces onto some template plastic and used my ruler to draw the extra 1/4" lines around it, then cut it out. I can lay this on my fabric and draw around it.
Use a piece of fine grit sandpaper under the fabric to prevent slipping when you are drawing the lines, or, as in this case, a tablecloth works.
Butt the lines up against each other to save time both in drawing and cutting. Don't worry about being precise with the lines and/or cutting, at this point precise doesn't matter. And the lines won't show when you are done.
I have enough cut now to probably last me a long time, we'll see what develops! I hope to make something larger than a candlemat, but then again, that would be finished sooner! I'm shooting for bigger than a breadbox but smaller than a bed quilt. Stay tuned....

1 comment:

MissesStitches said...

Wow! Your paper piecing project looks challenging, to be sure! This is where an AccuQuilt Cutter would come in handy, right?

Personally, I find it harder to hand sew through batik fabrics as they are a little more tightly woven.