Welcome to Week 5 of the New Hexagon Quilt Along featuring the NEW English Paper Piecing Templates by Cabin in the Woods Quilters and fabrics by ADORNit. We are more than half way through the quilt this week and stitching is coming along nicely. The wall of blocks is getting bigger and bigger. I have really enjoyed sitting with the blocks in the evenings stitching away during my favorite Netflix shows with the pup on my lap.
I think the best thing about working on blocks by hand is I seem to get so much more done. The projects are so portable, I can put everything in a small projects box and I am able to enjoy the company of my family while working on them instead of locking myself away with the sewing machine in my studio. It has also been a nice break from all the demanding office work that comes with being a designer in the quilting world.
As I mentioned last week, when we were talking about my favorite English Paper Piecing tools, I will take a little time and talk about the thread that I use. While I do not have a tremendous amount to share with you this week I thought I might share with you a couple of up close photos of different threads that I used so that you can see why I settled on the choices mentioned last week.
THOUGHTS ON THREAD
Due to the fact that I was using paper/card stock templates with the glue baste method, I decided on polyester thread to prevent shredding. I was anxious to get started on my project so I used the only polyester thread I had available at that moment… Guterman. Now there are times when I am stitching very quickly or late at night in a darker room and my stitches show a little more than normal but as you can see from the photograph below… the Guterman thread that I had was probably 50 wt. and was a little thicker than was ideal for this project.
The stitches directly in the center of the photo are a very good example of using a slightly larger weight thread and a slightly larger needle. The rest of the block was assembled with a different thread and needle. The smaller you would like your stitches to be the thinner the thread and needle need to be. Ideally you don’t want your stitches to show at all.
In the photo below I switched to bottom line 80 wt. thread but stayed with the same straw needle above but the needle was still a little too large. The needle was taking too big a bite of the fabric and so the stitches were still showing.
I decided to try the large eye #11 milliners needles shown in last week’s post and get much better results. Then a friend gave me a bobbin of Wonderfil 100wt thread and that seemed to yield the best results consistently even when my eyes were tired late at night.
As you can see from the photo above… most of the stitches are virtually invisible to the naked eye. Once the paper is removed from the back of the block, the fabrics will relax and you will see even less of the stitches. So, if you begin stitching your blocks and aren’t happy with your results, try a smaller needle and smaller weight thread. Keep experimenting until you find the right combination that works for you.
Now on to this week’s blocks…
Block 26: Linda…
was created with 1 1/2″ 6 Pointed Star and 60˚ Triangle templates from the small sets.
Block 27: Victoria…
was created using the 1 1/2″ 6 pointed star template from the small set.
Block 28: Mary Ellen…
was created using the 1 1/2″ hexagon and 60˚ triangle templates from the small sets and a rather odd slanted rectangle shape. I have created a CWQ printable for you to download to create those odd shapes. Keep in mind that the shapes slant two in one direction and two in the other direction. Make sure you clearly mark the templates and make two of each to complete this block. You can DOWNLOAD TEMPLATE HERE. We have marked the fabric side on the pieces so you won’t get confused. Peek-a-boo owl fussy cut in the center.
Block 29: Bev…
was created using the 1 1/2″ hexagon, 60˚ triangle, and 6 pointed star templates from the small sets. Another owl makes a surprise appearance in the center of the block.
Block 30: Debbie…
was created using the 1 3/4″ 120˚ Isosceles template from the large set. The other parts of this block are unfortunately another oversized or odd shape. The center of the block is a 3 1/2″ 6 pointed star. Because we do not make the template that large we have created a CWQ Printable that you can DOWNLOAD HERE for the other 5 pieces of the block. Again, make a note that the half triangle pieces go in two separate directions. Be careful to mark your pieces so that you have 2 in one direction and 2 in the other direction to create the block. I was able to fussy cut one of my favorite phrases from the Nested Owls Juicy Fabric by ADORNit. The owl is my spirit animal you know.
So far in this Quilt Along we have used templates from the following CWQ sets:
We list them here so you can find them easily on our online store. Remember that several sets are used multiple times throughout the book/calendar and you will use multiple sizes from each set throughout the book/calendar as well. Of course you will use them again and again throughout your EPP lifespan as the same shapes appear in many designs. All of the shapes in the New Hexagon will have some relationship to 60˚ because they are hexagon based.
If you missed the other blocks in the Quilt Along you can find them all on our blog page or by clicking here.
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