Saturday, July 5, 2008

POSTAGE STAMP HEXAGON QUILT

As promised, here is the story of the Hexagon quilt. I started the hexagon quilt in the early 90's as a take-along project while waiting for our kids during music lessons, contest performances, cross country races, and track meets. It was small and easily fit into my purse in a plastic birthday card sized envelope. I had everything I needed ...
  • pre-cut fabric hexagons
  • card stock foundation papers
  • basted hexagons
  • scissors, needle, and thread
  • the project (at that time it was small enough to fit very nicely into my bag without being wadded into a ball like a rag

But after this kids graduated and went away to college part of my "empty nest" was no more waiting time to be filled and the hexagon quilt was put away for another day, to work on sometime, and soon a forgotten UFO. Until, last summer.

One of the things Eryn asked for last summer was the hexagon quilt. Did I still have it? Could she have it? Could it be her quilt to finish? Absolutely! And, even better, Eryn would be visiting during her in-between homes moving time which happened to coincide with our Scrappy Sister annual quilting retreat.I had been using 30's reproduction prints for the hexagon quilt, and, at the retreat, we just happened to be trading strips of 30's reproduction fabrics. Eryn got to take my place in the strip exchange so she would have a stash for cutting new hexagons. She circulated through the tables during the retreat driving hard bargins with the ladies as she traded strips for different strips she liked better. We got her set up with a rotary cutter, a stacked template like I describe in yesterday's post, and the UFO quilt kit.

I would hear off and on about surprise "squishies" arriving in the mail as different Scrappy Sisters mailed 30's scraps to Eryn to help her along the way to finishing her quilt. And what progress she has made!. When I gave the UFO to her it measure about 18" in length and about 12" in width. Check out the length now! I think it must be nearly 4'x6'. It covers the top of her dining room table. The desired finished length is still up in the air. She has decided it will be a large wall hanging rather than a bed quilt. And from the looks of things, I think it might be time to think about ordering the half hexagon card stock from Paper Pieces.


While I was visiting Eryn earlier in June we found some great looking organizing containers for her hexagons. She used the antique sherbet glasses for sorting the unbasted hexagons by color. By the way, if anyone knows the name of the crystal pattern for these glasses, let us know. I know it is hard to see that pattern on them from this picture. I'll ask her to send me a picture of just one so you can get a good look at it and help us identify the pattern. She is looking for more. She has eight right now but would like more since she has more that eight colors. I think she needs about 4 more.

After she bastes the hexagons she sorts them into her Fiestaware tea cups. Her new search now is to find brown Fiestaware. Do they even make it in brown? I think the cinnabar might be her closest bet. She's done a great job working the reds into the quilt. I tended to avoid the reds when I started because they seemed to jump right off the quilt at me. She has also added some of the more bold colors that have joined the palette of 30's prints ... the darker blues, the brighter oranges, browns (which are very hard to find) and, for today's project she has been working in the black prints with grace and style so they look like the belong in the quilt. Not an easy task.

During our antique outings we also found this primitive tool boxs. I thought it would be a good storage piece for my studio or to use for display in the different shows I go to. Wrong! It is perfect for storing the 6" squares of fabric before they are cut into hexagons. Another bin is used for her cutter, scissors, needle case, and template, and she uses an antique aluminum measuring cup for corralling her pre-cut card stock shapes.

How big are the hexagons? Eryn is working with hexagons that measure 3/4" on the side. Just the right size to not make the quilt seam "klunky" and yet big enough to allow centering of fussy cut prints from the conversational prints of the 30's.

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