Good afternoon and welcome to the 100 Weather Club here in beautiful South Texas – Time for those Summer Doldrums. Time to stay in the 70’s with the A/C running at full blast.
I started Brinton Hall Quilt (Quiltmania #107) this week. Lu Ann (Loose Threads Blog) inspired me to make this quilt and become more proficient with English Paper Piecing (EPP). I really am enjoying Diane Gilleband’s book – what a find! (Thx again LuAnn) What fun I am having with this project. I want to share the process I am using to make the center Blocks because most patterns in magazines leave out a lot of information. The greatest thing about the Blogging world is the inspiration that we received from the Quilt Bloggers.
For my quilt, I decided to use a beautiful Asian print that I had purchased years ago and had just enough to fussy cut the 7 – 10 1/2″ squares. (Batiks will be used for the hexies in the Medallion). I placed my template on the right side of each 10 1/2″ square and marked the fussy cut blocks with my applique pencil. I did NOT trim the excess fabric because I felt I would need something to hold on to when I appliqued the Hexie Crown onto the block. LuAnn had posted that she had an issue with the fabric not laying flat so I tried to think of a way to stabilize the center of the block. I cut a large circle of freezer paper and pressed on the back side of the fabric. I thought that it would be large enough, but I still had about an inch or so that was not supported when I appliqued the crown and I had to be very careful in that process. I also had some problems in sewing the hexies together in the right place. Here is my first block:
Of course, if you have read my Blog before you know that I am the “Ripper Queen of Quilting” and usually make a test block to make sure that problems do not arise. Before I started this project, I read Diane’s book (well part of it) and studied Karen’s method to fussy cut the 10 1/2″ blocks for the Medallion and the placement of the Hexie Crowns (check out the tutorial http://faeriesandfibres.blogspot.ca/2015/06/brinton-hall-start-and-little-tutorial.html) . In making the template, I counted the number of hexie’s that Karen had used in her picture; placed them accordingly; and taped them together with “non-stick” tape that is used for paper piecing. Then I drew around that group of hexies on heavy drawing paper to make my template to fussy cut the Medallion Center blocks.
This morning I started on Block 2 – I sewed 18 gold hexies and tried to think of a better way to put the crown together and to stabilize the block when appliquing the Crown. I traced the template onto freezer paper (same size as the fussy cut block) cut it out and turned the block over and realized that I had another problem with my idea – it is called “no lines to follow” – PLACEMENT STUPID! So I ran a basting thread along the lines on the front of the block which provided me a line to follow when placing the hexies and appliquing them to the 10 1/2″ block AND provide guidelines for pressing my freezer paper stabilizer to the back of the block. I did have to cut 1/4″ off my freezer paper template because it would have been in the way of my applique! Here are some visuals in case my verbage has you off in never-never land!
One of the problems I encountered yesterday when working on the Hexie Crown, was “placement” of the hexies. I kept having to look at the pattern to make sure I was sewing the accurately. By doing the basting thread on the lines I originally drew from Karen’s template idea, and pinning each hexie to its appropriate position, and using the clips I will be able to complete the Crowns much faster. NOW remember I am new to this so many of you probably already know these secrets…. if not, then I hope it helps another newbie to this technique. Clear as mud – right?
Have a great week – and enjoy your work. EPP is so relaxing – just as much as embroidery!