happy hexies

While taking Rachel's handstitched class, I really wanted to learn English paper piecing (EPP). I love the intricate star and hexagon shapes that you can make with the technique. Unfortunately, I couldn't get into Storm at Sea, so I did an alternate block and ended up machine paper piecing them. Still, I wanted to give the technique a shot (I'm in this class to learn after all), but with a project I really was excited about.

I had bookmarked this post ages ago, but had never had the gumption to actually try hexies. Silly me, they are super easy! I don't know what I was waiting for. But turns out applique week was right after paper piecing week, so it seemed the stars had aligned for this previously shelved project: hexagon applique jeans!

hexie jeans

I had a pair of jeans. Yes, I bought them with holes (Dad, don't be shaking your head, I feel it way over here). But the holes were not so large until one day, playing with a sweet and adorable cousin, the baby made a break for it and in my fast attempt to run and scoop her up, I heard the riiiiiipp that so often accompanies these kinds of things.

So my chic little peep hole had turned into a gaping, unattractive mammoth of a hole. I measured and one hexagon flower would take care of the whole (or hole?) thing.


hexie jeans

hexie jeans

This was an easy, single afternoon project that was super fun! I was thinking of what else to add hexagons to, but I don't want to be that crazy lady with the funny clothes. I'm much too young for that.

I apologize for the somewhat interesting photos. It's hard photographing your knees, attractively, while wearing pants in over 100F weather. These are most definitely fall pants.

I'm linking this project up to The Handmade Parade at There and Back - head over to check out all the fabulous hand made projects!

alternatives

paper piecing week
This last week was English paper piecing week at Handstitched Class. I hemmed and hawed which fabrics to use and how to lay them out for days. I finally settled on some choices and had basted all the shapes together and arranged them to see how the Storm at Sea block would turn out.

I hated it. It seemed to be too busy with the patchwork (which I was totally digging). I also couldn't get the right mix of fabrics with what I had on hand and as much as I like a fabric store adventure, I really wanted to be sewing. 

So I put it off day after day until I ran out of days. Then I did what I should have done all along. A different block. One that I liked. That worked with what I had. (Insert palm to forehead and a big duh).

paper piecing week

I really like the simplicity of this block. I think it will look nice with the on point squares in the next round. And since I have embroidery on a linen background and plan on using linen for the large hand quilting round, I think it will be nice to also accent those corner blocks with some nice hand quilting as well.

And I even got to work on a hexie project with all the spare time this left me! (Reveal coming soon, promise!)

sew and tell: orange crush

orange crush quilt

orange crush quilt

This was a fun, quick quilt to make. Even with my hemming and hawing and waiting for fabric orders and learning two new techniques, it only took about a month. Not too shabby. I'm pretty happy with my machine quilting, although I do hope it gets better with practice. I really did enjoy the paper piecing and am now working on a new paper pieced project since I liked it so much!

When brainstorming for this project, I knew I wanted something a little bit mushy. I had this quilt floating around in my head and had seen this photo floating on pinterest (I use it as a search engine even if I don't actually pin). Both seemed like good candidates because they would use the strips pretty nicely without too much cutting which would make the project go much more quickly. So I sort of combined these two lovelies into something a little different.

orange crush quilt

After the heart, I still had some strips left over so I added the pieced strip to the back of the quilt and used the rest to create a scrappy binding. I really do love it!

But somehow, over the course of the past few weeks, my "Orange Crush" quilt has been renamed as "The Napper" around these parts. I think it may have something to do with this....

naping

...happening every time someone snuggles under it.

To see what other LVMQG members made with their strips, check out this link.
For more about this quilt, check out this link.

last weekend

hiking the mt
hiking the mt
hiking the mt
hiking the mt
hiking the mt
Last weekend, while my sister was in town, we took a break from the desert heat and went hiking in the mountains! It was a beautiful 65F. Amazing. All the hills and real trees and greenery almost made it seem like we were a little closer to back east. We could even see some snow still on the mountain if we looked high enough and squinted!

We did get pricked by these little, tiny cactus that are quite innocent looking, but luckily by the time we got back to the car, all was well and our legs stopped burning.
In other completely irrelevant news, we found a Rita's Italian Ice. The first one in Vegas! Brand spanking new! Right next to my favorite quilt shop! Ok, Vegas, I'm warming up to you. Maybe you aren't so bad after all...

ritas!

sisterly stitching

sister stitching
While my sister was here, she said that she wanted to sew something. After I picked my shocked self off the floor, we made a trip to the quilt store to pick up some fabric. She's really into blues and selected this print and solid combo herself. She did all the ironing, pinning (she pins like me - the more the better) and stitched up this pillowcase one morning. I helped with the rotary cutting, just because I wanted to send her home with all the digits she came with.

sister stitching
We used this method for the construction. It is often called the Burrito method, but of course, before I could tell her that, she commented that it kind of felt like she was making a nut roll (such a Daddy's girl!). So, we plowed on with the Nut Roll method and I have to say it came out pretty nicely.

It was the first time she has sewed anything and the first time using a machine, so I think she did do a fantastic job. Aren't you impressed?!

sister stitching

on my cutting table

on the cutting table
Here's a sneak peak at my Modernista swap fabrics and the start of my large item. I've been wanting to make New York Beauty blocks for a while now and I think that my partner would really like them. I really want to do some hand quilting on this so that's why I am sticking to mostly solids. I think it might make the quilt stitches pop more than they would with patterns.

But if I plan on hand stitching, I better get a move on these blocks! Hopefully they come together quickly. Really excited to make my small item as well, but want to at least get this ready for quilting before I get too far behind on projects.

satin....jewels?

almost...
The hand embroidery on my medallion quilt has been slow going. Rachel definitely warned of this, but I guess getting sick last week, taking care of a sick husband, entertaining house guests and just general life business has really gotten me quite far behind my self imposed deadlines.

I'm hoping to catch up as our next round is English paper piecing and some nice and easy (woo hoo!) patchwork. I still am hoping to squeeze in a few more of the other projects (hexies! wall art! sashiko!), but they will have to wait for the time being.

close up on the embroidery
close up of embroidery
And, with all my complaining, you might be guessing that I'm not enjoying myself. Well, despite the looong time that it took, I am so happy with the end result that I think it's been worth it so far. But I am a little bit over running stitches at the present time.

I've outlined my jewels and prepared them for satin stitching, but plan on coming back to those at a later time. I want to catch up on the rest of this class and some other WIPs before I commit to two plus hours per 2" block. And get out to buy more embroidery thread. Sheesh. 

I've started on some other little works for some swaps and am sewing a little something with my sister for her dorm room, so it's been nice to step away a bit from this quilt. I can't wait to add the next layer though since it seems I've been staring forever at it without much change.

I've linked this up to the Handmade Parade at There and Back!

a ::little:: stashing

stashing
1. Valori Wells Cocoon Shine 2. Loulouthi Sumer Totem, Hugs and Kisses 3. Kona Solids 4. Modern Meadow Acorn Chain, Herringbone 4. Echo Abstract, Small Trees 5. Children at Play

I went a little crazy online recently and ordered a whole bunch of fabric. But for good purposes! I've got lots of sewing happening with a retreat coming up in August and a few swaps in the works (Modernista and for the Love Circle of dGS).

I also used the opportunity to add onto free shipping with a few little extras for my stash, but I think I grabbed some good blender prints...and some Children at Play, just because I love it.