Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Hexies: The Hard Part is Over

Guess whaaaaaaat? I put my last few piecing stitches into my hexie table runner. All the shapes are joined and the papers removed. It's only been ten months and twenty hexie flowers. It's about time, right?

It looks like nothing, but there are a lot of stitches in there. And a lot of tails wagging on the back:

I didn't quite know what to do with the edges. There were folds and loose bits that weren't sewn as they had originally been tacked to the piecing papers. I was going to fuse some interfacing to just the edges to tame them, but that didn't feel right, mentally. Plus it seemed like a lot more work. So I simply trimmed them straight.

This was very make-it-up-as-you-go for me, so certain aspects aren't as great as if they might be if I had thought to plan things out. But I thought instead of trying to stabilize the edges from fraying, and then getting the binding on just perfect to hit where I wanted (and it still might be a problem as it would be right near the unsewn tails that might fray) I just decided to square it off and be done with it.

I certainly went through stages with this quilt top. When I was wrapping papers and basting them in place I was in love. When I was sewing the flowers together I wanted to marry the project. Then my excitement waned. And the project sat. It was rough on the fingertips and it was hard to find time to work on it. But I finally just finished it off. I still love the vintage feel of the fabric, and the colors. I'm just...a little tired of it.

So I've made an executive decision. I'm going to machine quilt this. If I were to choose to hand-quilt this it would truly sit for another year, and quite possibly never be finished. So I'm going to do some simple quilting and a scrappy binding and call it a day. Or a year. Well, almost a year. I want this out and about where I can see it and enjoy it, not folded up in a box waiting to be finished.

I don't know that I could make something like this again. I've seen some truly beautiful pieces and have no idea where people got their patience, especially those who make entire bed quilts out of hand-sewn hexies. The precision is great, and simple hand sewing can be quite soothing. But I like things I can make in a few days or a week. I get too excited to get onto the next thing. So maybe to get my hand-sewing fix I'll start stitching the linings in my bags closed by hand. They'll look  better and I'll get to slow down for a few minutes. And then I can jump to the next thing.

Hopefully I'll have this completely finished this week. And hopefully it's not now so old that it disintegrates when I make my quilt sandwich :)


  1. I get tired of things after working on them for too long too... but this is beautiful! You'll fall in love all over again once it is done. =)

  2. This is so beautiful. You have a lot of skill and patience.

  3. It's beautiful Bethany. Yes machine quilt it and "get er done".

    My mom started a grandmother's flower garden when I was in my teens (A long, long time ago). About 10 years ago she gave it to me to finish. It was all hand pieced. It sat for 10 years and then last year I decided to just machine quilt it and finish it. I did and mom got to see it done when she came for a visit last year. I gave it to my daughter. This quilt started out as a quilt for my sister all done in pinks. My sister changed her mind and wanted a biscuit puff quilt instead, so mom made her that and the GF sat for decades. So over 40 years later it was finally finished! Mom had started to make me a sampler quit in mostly blues and yellows too when I was a teen about the same time and she wanted em to finish that one too, but my husband told her to finish it and give it to her granddaughter(our daughter), so she did. So I never got the quilt mom started to make for me and my daughter got that one intended for me somewhere in her closet as it's a twin and too small for her queen bed.

    On another note, I finally uploaded the drawstring bag I made from your sew along onto your Flickr group.

  4. This is totally beautiful! I agree, finish it off and start using it, too pretty not to be on a table somewhere. Here's my take on hand sewing: if God had wanted us to keep hand sewing, he wouldn't have let someone invent electric (or even foot pedal) sewing machines. Progress! Oh, wanted to tell you I visited my first quilt shop ever yesterday here in Richmond - I can only say I was overwhelmed, it was too much. Online shopping, Joann's, Hobby Lobby are so much more manageable. Do I need to pray for a Hobby Lobby to open near you soon? I think I do! BTW I'm up to March 2011 in my "read through the entire Sweet Bee Buzzings blog." I don't often leave comments because when I do, it's hard to find my place again but just know I'm reading your blog constantly. Big Hugs ~ Mary

  5. It looks great, well done for finishing the top! I have a pouch full of EPP makings that I frequently take on trips and don't often sew. We'll call it a decade in the making or something ;o)

  6. I think it is lovely. If you don't like it, I'd love it;) I too know what you are talking about. I have a zillion projects going at one time and I am tired with the last one before I finish it and I am already on to three more projects that I am totally interested in. I blame the creative side of me on that. (That is a real excuse, right?)



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