Friday, May 10, 2013

And Then There Were Three ...

They're Multiplying!OK.  I admit it.  I am beginning to understand the addictive quality of English Paper Piecing and all those hexie projects I see in blogland.

By the time I had finished stitching the third star flower, I was already thinking about how I was going to go through my scrap bins and cut up all the smaller pieces of fabric into petals and hexie shapes to make a much larger project ... I have wanted to find a project to use up the too-small-for-most-project scraps in there. Maybe this is it.

When I uploaded the photo of the first flower to Flickr yesterday, within minutes, Amy was asking for a peek at the back.  

I'm sure there are neater ways to do it, but here's a look at the insides of my blocks.   Please remember this is my FIRST adventure in English Paper Piecing and don't judge my sloppy first efforts too harshly ... I'm sure I'll get better/neater with practice ;-)  

Templates and FabricI printed Regina's template sheets on card stock and used a rotary cutter and ruler to cut them out. I punched a pair of holes near the center. Using one of the paper templates as a guide and an add-a-quarter ruler, I stacked the fabrics and rotary cut them with a 1/4 inch allowance around the template.

As you might guess, I cut and prepared everything for only one star flower at a time–it's just the way my design mind works, focusing on the elements of one flower/block/section at a time. But, I think this isn't the way I've seen most hexie/EPP projects progress and I need to figure out if I can shift to a way of cutting everything (or at least hundreds) of units, preparing them and having them ready to assemble. It's that kind of preparatory step that often slows/stops progress for me.  I'm focusing on that personal challenge this month and I think the blogiverse sent me this prize of an EPP project as a way to overcome it ... or at least make some strides in that direction.

Pinned Hexie with Fabric AttachedHere is what my hexie center looked like after I attached the fabric. I deviated from Regina's directions a bit, but using the heavier card stock and not stitching through the paper.

I simply tacked the fabric at the corners and skipped to the next corner.

You can see how I pinned the fabric in place by going through my two punched holes.  It distorts the shape less and the pin is just going through fabric, not paper/card stock.

And here is the finished star flower, from the  back.

Star Flower - Front and Back

In theory it seems that once the surrounding pieces are sewn in place, I should be able to clip the basting/tacking stitches, remove the paper templates, and reuse them. 

This weekend on the Block Lotto's Weekend Update, I asked quilters to share their process.  I have found when I share mine here, I learn so much from the comments and discussions that follow.  Since I am just beginning my adventure in EPP, I know I have a lot to learn and would love to read your comments, suggestions and tips.   And if you'd like to share a blog post about YOUR process, please jump over to the Block Lotto and join me at the Linky party.

I'm also joining Billie Bee's Hexie Friday.


Linda Big D said...

I made over the past 3 years (no work this year) about 49 grandmother's flower garden hexies. I didn't do the paper templates but used a rubber stamp I bought from "Quilts by Kate" who has a website and lives in san Antonio (usually has a booth at Dallas Quilt show). The stamp has the cutting line (solid) and the sewing line, and I just cut out all the hexies by hand (an enjoyable mindless task while watching tv). I sewed mine together by hand, which goes pretty fast once you get the hang of it, and the stitches are hidden just like regular quilt seams.

Quilty Conscience said...

Love your star flowers. I too am a newbie to EPP. I did my first project, a hexie doll quilt (I'm not as ambitious as you!) last month. And now I have a bunch of pink hexies made for another. I was surprised how much I enjoyed the process of making the hexies. I'm looking forward to seeing your progress on these. They are beautiful! Toni

Carrie P. said...

very pretty. that is the way I tack my fabric on my hexies.

Terri said...

You are a brave soul! Well, if you can do it, so will I. I'll show my seamy underside, too. Soon as I finish off reading the blogs. Then I'll write one, too.

BTW I've finished a third one yesterday, too.

Nancy said...

I had the hexie fever for a while but thank goodness I recovered. Love your stars.

Grit said...

Wonderful star flowers.
Grit from Germany

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