And so today I made a start. Step one: make some tools to speed up the process. I'll need, hexagon and triangle templates plus a window template for fussy cutting. The hexagon and triangle templates in the book do not have a seam allowance so I traced around them on tracing paper (also known as onion skin) making sure to mark the grain line on each. I cut them out being sure that there was 1/2" all around and glued the tracing paper to a heavier stock (I used a scrap manila envelope). With a rotary cutter and ruler I cut out the templates being sure to add the 1/4" seam allowance all around. I next placed my new hexagon template on a piece of paper and traced around it. I cut out the hexagon from the paper so I would have a window template.
Now I'm ready to cut some hexagons! Some of my fabric has pretty little images like these birds on a pink ground and I want them in my quilt.
I'll use my window template to locate the bird.
I placed my template inside the window.
I carefully remove the window template and then trace around the hexagon.
I cut out the hexagon and there you have it! One fussy cut hexagon. Not all of my hexagons will be cut this way but the odd few will add interest to my quilt.
In no time at all I had a nice pile of hexagons!
I'll need to cut the triangles so I do this by cutting strips of fabric that are the height of my triangle. I cut from the length of the fabric rather than the width because I get more triangles from the length (assuming I have more than 42" of fabric which I do). I fold my fabric, pin the edge so it stays straight and I pin further over about 1" beyond where I will cut the strip. The reason for the second set of pins is that it will keep the edges of the fabric lined up until I'm ready to cut the next strip! So the fabric is pinned I cut one strip and leave the pins in place on the folded fabric because it saves me time not having to line up the edges over and over! I don't remove them until I'm positive I won't need any more strips.
I fold my strip in half and place my triangle at the beginning and trace the sides. I flip the template and move it over being sure to line up the template with the line I just drew. I draw the next triangle. I repeat this process until I've marked the entire strip.
I use my rotary cutter and rule to cut on the lines.
Once I've cut the entire strip I'll know how many triangles each strip will produce. I can then cut the number of strips I need for all of the triangles. One final tip: I cut a bunch of triangles and leave them on my cutting board exactly as they are shown above. The reason is that the grain line is important and I know that when they are set up this way the grain is parallel to the top and bottom edges. I can just pick up a triangle, lay it on my hexagon and sew, sew, sew! When I've used up what I've cut I cut some more and sew some more.
My Mom (Anne H) has asked me to quilt another of her African themed quilts. I've got it pinned and ready to go under the sewing machine needle. I think this one is going to look really nice when it's done.
That's it for today and there'll be no post tomorrow. Come back on Friday for an update on my progress on the projects I showed you today!
Until I post again, happy sewing!