Tuesday, October 10, 2017

The Quilting Progresses

I could not resist -- I had my current hand quilting project along to use during my lecture presentation and there was that beautiful bed!!
The location is the Cook room at the National House Inn in Marshall, Michigan where I stayed last Saturday night -- oozes charming!!
It's almost too perfect isn't it -- the color of the room and the bed with the canopy??

I'm currently working on the center row of the quilt.
I'm using Presencia perle cotton, size 16.
I had picked up a few spools of it here and there.  Somewhere along the middle of the second row, it became obvious that I wasn't going to have enough thread -- I searched locally in vain.
Then an Instagram friend tipped me off about the Colonial Needle Company and they carry a complete selection of the colors in that size!
The thread dilemma had me stalled but then I stumbled across the #100daysofhandquilting hashtag on Instagram and that sparked me back into action. 
Posting my progress daily and all those little red 💖's is just the incentive I needed. 
I hope my followers will not get tired of seemly repetitive pictures as I slog along. 
Today will be Day 14!!
If you are on Instagram you can find me @hueymary
(There is also #handquiltWednesday on Instagram for more inspiration!!)

It takes me three to five evenings to quilt one motif and I've steered away from the traditional "outline the hexagon" approach.  Another Instagram follower asked me to share close-up photos of the quilting designs from the back side -- that won't help very much, will it?
So I've made some sketches and taken a few photos to illustrate some of the quilting motifs I've created. 

This photo shows the double zigzag outline of each motif and the quilting of the path hexagons.
These drawings might clarify it a bit.
The pink lines are the quilting lines -- diamonds in the light floral print
and a trefoil-like chain around the green intersection hexagons.
Here's a closer look at one of the intersections.
In the diagram below, the pink lines illustrate the outline of the entire motif.  
The first line is approximately 1/4" from the seams and the second line (along the lower left corner of the drawing) illustrates the placement of the second line which uses the corners of the hexagons as guide points.
Does it make sense? 
The blue "snowflakes" in the central hexagons is a filler I'm scattering here and there.
The light green diagram (above) that "joins" three hexagons is my favorite and it's featured in the photo below.
Below is my favorite motif quilting design so far -- it's the one I'm currently doing in the photo of my hoop at the beginning of this post.  It's the second time I've used it in the quilt and it won't be the last!
The green hexagons represent the path around a motif.
The blue line traces the outside seams of the motif and the center hexagon (not quilting lines).
I begin at the center hexagon with the "snowflake".
The pink line traces the first line of quilting.  It is 1/4" from the seam lines where it traces the shape of a hexagon and as those lines (which I'm drawing with a chalk pencil) extend towards the center intersecting to form the "V".
The second quilting line is green and it's 1/4" from the seam lines.
The third line is brown and it bisects the center of the hexagons and echoes the "V"s.
Put your finger on the screen and trace each line to clarify it.
I thought long and hard before adding the third line, but there was too much empty space without it.
As I look at the drawing, I'm thinking I should plunge the "V" of the third line deeper.
Someone asked what inspired this approach to quilting the hexagons.
As I think about how to answer that question, it seems like it goes way back in my quilting experience when someone said to me to look at the "shapes" created by the patchwork rather than the individual pieces of the patchwork.
Don't know who said it? 
But glad it stuck!!

Now that I'm halfway along with the center of the quilt, it is moving along smoothly as I'm repeating motifs.  But I'm already expecting to struggle with how to quilt the border.
Hopefully by the time I arrive at that point, my subconscious will have solved that and planted an idea in my head!!

Back to the hoop!!



  1. It's stunning! I love Marshall, it's not far from my home.

  2. Beautiful quilt, lovely quilting designs. Enjoy your stitching!

  3. Very helpful and interesting post. I am accumulating piles of hexies-so I'm far away but will save this. Your room and bed are perfect with your quilt - best not let hotel management see it!

  4. What a gorgeous quilt! Lovely quilting ideas, Mary.