Sneak Peek – JLW Club 15 for 2016

Ta-da – the quilts and/or quilt tops are made, a few need MQ and bound.

I’m leaving Monday for a trip that was planned a year ago, I will finish things up when I return home in December.

Thought you may enjoy a ‘sneak peek’ to tide you over for now.

Due to Russ’s recent back surgery he is unable to travel with me, sad about that, but happy that he is finally on the mend after a couple of hiccups.  Also happy to say he can be ‘home alone’ in charge of the two fur-kids.

The tease is that the pictures are not accurate as to size of the blocks.

JLWC15_2016

 

 

Blessings for a Happy Thanksgiving!

Jo

 

 

More on Hexagons !!

This is what I’ve worked on the past two afternoons, thought I should share with you.  No it didn’t take me all of two afternoons, was worked on in between other stuff.  Multi-tasking!

I started this project around a year ago, it was a take-a-long project with no deadline.  No deadline and no pressure equals fun for me.

I had a trip to NYC in January to work on fabric lines, this project went with me, I stitched on it in the evenings, I was at the point of sewing flowers together to create diagonal rows.  Had an unexpected delay in Chicago O’Hare, a 7 hour delay, lucky for me I had this in my carry on (I always have sewing in my carry on along with a book).  I had an extended opportunity to sew!  I found a quiet gate – the amazing thing was the gate stayed quiet all the time I was there – lucky me.  I stitched, watched some snow removal, had a Starbucks, wasn’t bad at all.  When I got home I almost had a top.

The project rested, then I decided it was time to finish adding hexagons to the edges where needed, mission accomplished, then was interrupted with other stuff and once again this rested.

Finally it was time to complete the top, had to study it for a while to figure out how to proceed.  I’ve never finished a hexi project, so I was flying by you know what.  Logic is a good thing to use when faced with things like this.  I knew I would have to remove the edge papers, so I gave the top a good pressing with steam first.  Then I removed stitches and edge papers very carefully so as to not stretch anything.

Next, trim away excess of the hexagons to have a nice edge.  Note the 1/4″ ruler lines down the center of the light hexagons.

trimming side 1

You will have two opposite borders to trim like this.  Notice that I have the 1/4″ ruler marks lined up, so that when I sew the border to the top, my sewing line will be in the correct position.  Yes it looks weird, but trust me.

trimming side 2

You will have 2 remaining sides like this, to trim away.  My hexagons are 5/8″, so I had to think about where I was cutting so that my seam allowance would be down the center of the hexagon.

portion of top, trimmed

This is a portion of my quilt top, cropped to show you what the two sides looked like trimmed.

pressing

Next step, is to press the edges outwards so I can sew the border to the top.

sewed border to top

I measured across my top at both ends, then cut two borders to this one length (mine were the same because I didn’t pull or stretch the top), I pinned about every 1 1/2″ to 2″, pinned closely so nothing would stretch.  I carefully pressed the seam allowance toward the border.  I measured across my top including the first borders at both ends, then cut two borders to this one length, Again I pinned about every 1 1/2″ to 2″, sewed, then carefully pressed the seam allowance toward the border.

In this picture I’ve sewn the border to the quilt top, now I will trim away the little tips that protrude.  See how easy this is!

press toward the border

I’ve pressed the seam allowance toward the border – looks nice doesn’t it.

You can do this too!

Voila!  quilt top

Here is my finished quilt top – I really love how this turned out.  It measures 35″ x 40″.

I ‘think’ I’m just going to add a backing, no batting, I’m not sure yet.  Or I ‘may’ hand quilt this and finish with binding.  No deadline, will figure it out one of these days.  In the meantime it will be draped over the drying rack at the studio – a quilt top in waiting.

Hopefully this will encourage you to proceed with your hexagon project!  Happy Stitching!

 

 

 

 

More pictures

These pictures are from Christmas – thought that you may enjoy seeing them as they are not all red/green like you may have thought I would use.   🙂

When you read this I’ll be in NYC working on future fabric lines for us.  Since that work is ‘top secret’, this will amuse you for now I hope.

Bought this 'Q' when I was in McKinney, TX last Fall, it is on the wall at the studio, thinking of moving it to another place on the wall with some other stuff.

Bought this ‘Q’ when I was in McKinney, TX last Fall, it is on the wall at the studio, thinking of moving it to another location on the wall with some other stuff, stay tuned.

 

Manassas quilt for JLW Club 13 for this year - I really love this quit, will use it at home soon.

‘Manassas’ quilt from JLW Club 13 for this year – I really love this quit, will use it at home soon.

 

Basket Parade from the new JLW Club 13 - this is what I see from my comfy chair when stitching, I really love this quilt!

‘Basket Parade’ from the new JLW Club 13 – this is what I see from my comfy chair when stitching, I really love this quilt!

 

This is 'Watson' in the dry sink in the living room before Christmas - also from JLW Club 13.

This is ‘Watson’ quilt in the dry sink in the living room before Christmas – also from JLW Club 13.

 

bucket bench I bought in PA last Fall, love how deep it is and perfect for quilt display, antique dough box on top.

Bucket bench bought in PA last Fall, love how deep it is and perfect for quilt display, antique dough box on top.

 

Reproduction bucket bench with Christmas decor - fun to move things around and make room for Christmas!

Reproduction tall bucket bench with Christmas decor – fun to move things around and make room for Christmas!

 

Winterberries quilt (Coming Home book) - one of my most favorite quilts.

‘Winterberries’ quilt (Coming Home book) – one of my most favorite quilts.

 

top of the cupboard that houses some of our pottery collection - changed it up this year with pottery, a doll quilt and repro red basket.

top of the cupboard that houses some of our pottery collection in the dining room – changed the top setting  this year with pottery, a doll quilt, repro red basket and beautiful artificial greens.

 

new to me antique Log Cabin quilt (Houston Fall 2013), 'over the cupboard door' - love to display quilts here.

New to me antique Log Cabin quilt (Houston Fall 2013), ‘over the cupboard door’ – love to display quilts here.

 

Repeat - I did this same display in 2012 - really loved it, so why not repeat!

I did this same display in 2012 – really enjoyed the simplicity, so why not repeat!   (quilt from JLW Club 10)

 

Pottery Shards quilt on the wall (JLW club 11), using the red/cream hexi tree skirt again.

‘Pottery Shards’ quilt on the wall (JLW club 11), using the red/cream hexi tree skirt again.  ‘Leftovers’ quilt under the carved rocking horse (JLW Club 7).

 

This display inspired by Pinterest - I have a neat carrier and selected redware plates, added nice artificial greens.  The little runner is used every year for maybe 15 or more years now.

This display inspired by Pinterest – I have a neat carrier and selected redware plates, added nice artificial greens. The little runner is used every year for maybe 15 or more years now.

Shhhh, the carrier is still on the cupboard in the dining room – want to enjoy it for a while longer.

Last but not least - Watson quilt looks good with Rolly Poly Santa on wheels and feather tree in antique redware pot.

Last but not least – ‘Watson’ quilt looks good with Rolly Poly Santa on wheels and feather tree in antique redware jar.

Have fun looking and see what you can get done for Christmas 2014!

Happy Stitching!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hexi update

I really haven’t fallen off the planet – seems there is always something else to do – actually there is this afternoon, but  . . .  here I am anyway.  Last night my accountant took my book files, checked things over, bank balances with books, sales tax report is next, then 1099’s  and W-2’s are done.  Has the info for my Corp tax return – and it is only Jan 14th – ahead this year!  I know TMI – but it is a business and there are necessary things we have to do.

Will share a quick hexi update . . .

5/8" project - arranging the units

5/8″ project – arranging the units

 

will need to cover more path hexies so can complete the left side eventually

will need to cover more path hexies so can complete the left side eventually

 

this much is sewn together

this much is sewn together

 

gathered up the rows and stacked them in a basket with paper towels pieces separating the rows - organized!

gathered up the rows and stacked them in a basket with paper towels pieces separating the rows – organized!

hexi row - ready to add to the unit

hexi row – ready to add to the unit

edge papers in pace for joining

edge papers in place for joining

 

remove papers after sewing the row to the unit

remove papers after sewing the row to the unit

How is your hexi project coming along?  Here are some of mine – in progress – hoping to add borders and finish them up this winter — I still have some time.

4th hexie project - 1/2" hexis, used Spice Market and Toasted fabric lines

4th hexie project – 1/2″ hexis, used Spice Market and Toasted fabric lines

 

1/2" hexies, jewels and 1" diamonds to make the units

1/2″ hexies, jewels and 1″ diamonds to make the units

1inch diamonds to make the stars

1 inch diamonds to make the stars

These last three projects I worked on a year ago when I was so sick with the inner ear stuff, then bronchitis, was dizzy and couldn’t do much, but I could do handwork.  Something to focus on other than how I was feeling – stitching really does help!  Love busy work, and it holds those memories.

I wish you all the stitching time you want in 2014!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

fun trip to Tennessee!

I flew to Knoxville, Tennessee on Labor Day, to attend my friend Cindy Blackberg’s seminar ‘Handwork in the Smokies’.  This is Cindy’s last year to offer seminars, she has a website, you will be able to order her stamps for hand piecing, patterns, books, notions and stay tuned for a mysterious surprise in 2014!   Cindy also has a Blog and a Yahoo Group to keep in touch.

Since I’ve known Cindy for 20 years, I really had to go to her seminar and stitch with her and visit.  I got to brush up on embroidery with Cindy, it has been years and years.  The name of her quilt design for the seminar is Poke Berry Baskets.   See it here: http://cindyblackberg.com/teaching/seminars/

Below is my completed block.  Isn’t it pretty!  The basket portion is hand pieced.

Poke Berry Basket block from Cindy Blackberg's seminar.

Poke Berry Basket block from Cindy Blackberg’s seminar.

I also completed the embroidery for two more blocks.   🙂

It was a good week because I read two books, one flying to Knoxville, the second one flying back to Omaha.  I was able to finish them due to 3 hour layovers between flights.

Read these two books - I like mysteries and light reading

Read these two books – I like mysteries and light reading

It was a good stitching week for me, I was able to stitch some more hexi flowers together, I now have 30 of the hexi flowers with added path completed and stacked below.  I have 14 more hexi flowers covered and ready to stitch together, need to cover some more path hexis to complete.  I will  be cutting out some more hexi flowers, this will end up being a larger project than a doll quilt for a change.  The perfect take along project for me.

stack of 20 hexi flowers with path, the 14 little bundles of flowers waiting to be sewn, need to cut out and cover more path hexis

stack of 30 hexi flowers with path, the 14 little bundles of flowers waiting to be sewn, need to cut out and cover more path hexis, I don’t have enough as you can see.

On another note – I’ve been gifted with some beautiful pincushions over the years.  I really ‘love’ having a pincushion collection.  I do rotate them out, and I do use them, I get to think of the lovely ladies who made them for me.

You can see one of my newest gifts, a hexi flower pincushion in a zink lid,  in fall colors – perfect!  Life is good in Nebraska.

these are some of my pincushion collection

these are some of my pincushion collection

Hope you have been able to get some stitching in too!

Now, back to work.  My Fall handwork retreat is in less than three weeks!

 

 

Hexagon tip

Another visual for you – I made a template from Templar (heat resistant template plastic).    No – the template does not need to be heat resistant, but it is a plastic I can see though for fussy cutting.

First, using a pencil, I draw around the hexagon paper on the frosted side of the Templar for the current project.  Then use a rotary cutter that I’ve designated for paper/plastic, use a ruler to add a 1/4″ on all six sides when cutting out the template for this project.  You can see my pencil line for the actual hexi size on the plastic, it is faint, but you can see it.

hexagon paper, my Templar template and fabric fussy cut for one flower

hexagon paper, my Templar template and fabric fussy cut for one flower

I’m working on this project mostly in the car when Russ is driving.

cut out hexis for flowers and the centers in stacks.  I get my papers from 'Paper Pieces' - friendly fast service!

Cut out stacks of hexis for flowers including the centers. I get my papers from ‘Paper Pieces’ – friendly fast service!

Below are path hexis in a pile and covered hexi stacks for flowers.  To keep the flower hexis pieces together, I use needle and thread, knot both the top and bottom until you are not bumping along on the highway and can stitch them together.

pile of path hexes, and small  stacks for each flower, so I don't have to sort everything when ready to assemble.

pile of path hexes, and small stacks for each flower, so I don’t have to sort everything when ready to assemble.

A little planning will go a long way on this project, no do-overs or re-sorting.

Maybe a little efficient!

Have a great time working on your hexi project!

Hexagon tip

I learned about path hexis when I was in Australia a couple of years ago.

Before we left – I cut out a ‘lot’ of hexagons from assorted fabrics so I could cover the papers and begin to make flowers while on Holiday!

While stitching with my friends, one told me to be sure to cover ‘path’ hexis while making flowers, if you wait until you have all the flowers made, you will be bored to tears with only covering and adding path hexis.  This nice lady was on her second large hexagon quilt.

First – figure out your layout for your flowers, so ‘you’ know what you need for your path.  There are a lot of pictures on museum websites and on Pinterest that show interesting settings in antique hexagon quilts.  Also look to books with pictures of antique quilts for your inspiration.

I determined a basic layout for this project – need 5 path hexis added to each flower:

add 5 path hexis to my flowers like this

add 5 path hexis to my flowers like this

I’ve arranged a few of the flowers that have 5 path hexis added,  you can see where this project is headed and that the path will join together for a frame around each flower.

And yes – I’m ‘fussy cutting’ my fabrics to add interest.  Part of the fun for me is seeing what great flowers happen with ‘fussy Cutting’ – so worth my effort.

this will be my layout, one row of path hexis around my flowers - as you can see the flowers share path hexes

this will be my layout, one row of path hexis around my flowers – as you can see the flowers share path hexis

When you get all your flowers made, you will begin to join the flowers to make diagonal rows.

when you pull the layout apart, you will eventually join the flowers to make diagonal rows.

when you pull the layout apart, you will eventually join the flowers to make diagonal rows.

When you begin to join the rows, recommend you remove the center papers, ‘leaving the edge hexi papers in’, until you have joined the next row.

This is what I do, I’m sure you will get other opinions, just sharing!

The interesting next step – how to finish off.

Don’t ask me why I have a few tops that are not finished off – they still have the edge hexi papers in them.  Will tackle it one of these days when I have extra time to play.

Have fun with your EPP (English Paper Piecing) projects!

Or by all means – be sure to join in the fun!

 

 

Hexagons, still loving them!

I was asked to post some pictures of what to do with hexagons.

First, when I cover the papers, I cover 6 identical units so I can make 6 petal flowers, or 3+3 petal flowers, finally add a center of choice.  I really love these 1/2″ hexagons – that is the measurement along one edge.

When I had a pile of covered hexis (say a couple hundred or so) the fun began for me!

pile of hexis

pile of hexes – I think that is grape juice in the glass.     lol

sorted to make flowers

sorted to make flowers – can you say ‘fussy cut’ !!!

layout #1

layout #1, with path hexis

layout #2

layout #2 with path hexis

As you are covering hexagon papers to create flowers, be sure to cover papers with the path fabric you have chosen, the project also requires lots of path hexis, don’t wait, work on them as you are making the flowers.

I’ve assembled both layouts to make  doll quilts size quilts, however I haven’t added borders  to either, maybe this winter?  These are ‘no deadline’ projects – gotta love those!

I have a new hexi project underway (I can’t help myself), see my July 2nd Journal entry.

Also if you write ‘hexi’ or ‘Hexagon’ into the ‘search feature’ on my Journal page (blog), the posts come up where I blogged about hexis or hexagons.

There are lots and lots of hexagon eye candy on Pinterest, and also lots and lots of new new and vintage EPP (English Paper Piecing) quilts on Pinterest.

EPP or hexis are wonderful handwork and take along projects.  Join in the fun!

Happy Stitching!

 

 

 

 

handwork

I’ve been adding some handwork in my evening schedule (and sometimes early in the morning before I shower – I know TMI).  My new work schedule allows evenings out of the office – a long over due change.  For years I felt I was suppose to work crazy long hours, happy that I finally realize the error of my ways.

My handwork skills are a bit rusty,  it is time to get back into the handwork groove.  I have a small appliqué project started, found my hexi project that I started last Fall ( 1/2″ hexis), and get this – started a new hexi project with 5/8″ hexes – no deadline is the mantra.  All my other hexi projects use the 1/2″ hexis.

Fall 2012 hexi project - view is the back side

Fall 2012 hexi project – view is the back side

I’ve stitched the flowers, added path hexis, joined the flowers to make diagonal rows, now I’m joining the rows together.  The picture shows that I’m in the process of removing papers from the center, leaving papers in all the edge hexis.  You can see – I  thread baste the fabric to cover the papers.  After the hexi rows are joined, I’ve cut the basting threads and am removing the itsy bits of thread and finally the papers.

Nice to have needle and thread in hand once again.

This is just a progress report – will show the front when it is assembled and the edges worked out.   Remember no deadline, so basically this is just a tease.

What are you working on?   🙂

PS – I have plans for a new hand piecing project – will let you know when I have it all worked out, I’m pretty jazzed about a new handpiecing project!

PPS – I’m going on a sewing Retreat next week – just a warning, who knows what I’ll start while hanging out with friends!

I’m seeing hexi’s everywhere!

How about you???

We stopped at Walgreen’s this afternoon to pickup Zyrtec, of course I have to look around a little, and low and behold I saw these.  I think I’ve eaten this type of chip at Retreat in Texas last year.

Anyway, let me know where you see hexi’s these days, besides your sewing basket of course.

seeing hexi's everywhere!

seeing hexi’s everywhere!

Have a nice weekend!