Glorious Hexagons: The 23rd Decade

Here are Glorious Hexagons 221 through 230.

#13 Judy

The hexagons in this Judy were cut from a scrap portion of a layer stack. It isn’t a cut that I would have made by choice. I think it worked out rather well, however, paired with the mottled yellow fabric to finish off the block.

#13 Judy

The hexagons for this Judy were also cut from a scrap area of a layer stack. I joined them with some diamonds for the central hexagon that would bring in more of the light blue color into the final block. Diamonds with ark swirls on the rust yellow fabric finish off the background allowing the light blue circle to take center stage.

#23 Dawn

I love the way the Hexagon Thirds work with this Dawn block. I especially like how the cheek and eye nestle in one half of the shape. I also like the way the rust color melts from the central hexagon into the adjoining outer shapes. I also like the white mane circle. Dawn has become one of my favorite blocks, especially using the Hexagon Third shapes for the the center.

#9 Doris

I really like using the Doris block to show off the various horse heads in the Large Horse Head fabric. In this block I like the blue circle in the background. I also like the way the horse snouts become a decorative element in the center of the block.

#9 Doris

This Doris is similar to the one above. There will be more Doris horse head blocks in the near future.

#54 Kim

Here I am back to my favorite block of all Kim with the horse head mane airplane propellor effect taking center stage on this block.

#23 Dawn

The outer shapes of this Dawn are cut from one of my favorite parts of the Panel Fabric. This block is going to be matched up with two other similar looking blocks in a large hexagon unit.

#23 Dawn

What is interesting about this Dawn is that I was forced to use triangles to make the central hexagon for the block. I had wanted to use the Hexagon Third shape, but the birds in this fabric are so densely spaced that it was impossible to place the template without overlapping part of a bird.

#1 Marie

All the little birdies go, “Tweet, tweet, tweet.” The Marie block is composed of three hexagons and three diamonds. In this Marie the hexagons are made up of two half hexagons facing each other. I was going to make the triangles out of the yellow background of the fabric, but decided instead to use additional birds. The block ends up with a a vacant center and three swarms of birds circling in the thirds of the block.

#10 Kelly

I had initially planned to face the pieces that make up the thirds of this block in the same direction. Then I got the idea of facing them toward each other with the blue stripe on the outside. I like the result. This block is likely to be used along with the similarly colored Dawn three blocks above.

 

Glorious Hexagons: The 22nd Decade

Here are Glorious Hexagons 211 through 220.

#8 Marena

#2 Carol

There is a story behind this Carol. I had originally put this block together in a different way. It was nagging me though, because it was very reminiscent of a German Swastika, albeit one with six rather than four legs. I didn’t want any block of mine to conjure up that vile image though, so I ripped it apart and put it back together in much nicer way.

#1 Maria

The hexagons get lost in this Maria, and a triangular element emerges and takes center stage in this block.

#34 Christie

The Christie block is going to be a nice way to show off the various horse heads in the large horse head fabric.

#10 Kelly

When I first made a couple Kelly blocks, much earlier in the project, I didn’t really like the block that much. It just didn’t speak to me. That all changed when I combined these two fabrics to make this Kelly block. I see more Kelly blocks in my future. This is one of my favorite individual blocks. I really like the way these two fabrics play together here.

#23 Dawn

If I had this Dawn to do over again I would have chosen a brown that more closely matches the background color of the outer shapes. Those shapes are cut from one of my favorite portions of the Panel Fabric for the collection. I feel that the color that I selected for the center dominates too much and draws attention away from the outer shapes. This block may actually get ripped apart and redone.

#10 Kelly

Moving forward with those Kelly blocks… Initially I was planning to make the horse heads in the diamond shaped thirds of the block face in the same direction. Then I got the idea of flipping them. I like the way the cheeks appear to grow from the necks of the facing horses. This is a little bit bizarre, but for some reason or another when I look at this block I am strangely reminded of the Sistine Chapel. I know it is weird. It must just be me.

#2 Carol

Each large triangle of this Carol is made up of four small triangle segments cut from the Birds on Black fabric. Initially these six large triangles were going to be paired with another Birds on Black hexagon to make a star in the center of a big hexagon. I thought that the end result was too busy though, so I repurposed the triangles into another Carol block which will become the center of another star in another big hexagon.

#38 Sonja

I like the way the Mane Fabric swirls and the way the horse cheeks become the dominant elements in this Sonja block.

#35 Sharon

This Sharon is very dimensional. I like the Sharon block, but I have not made that many of them. I am planning to make more. Taking advantage of the sharp edges of some of the stripe like elements in the Panel Fabric seems like a good way to do this. That division down the center of the diamond shapes makes the final design really pop.

 

Glorious Hexagons: The 21st Decade

Here are Glorious Hexagons 201 through 210.

#9 Doris

I like the little smudge of light blue that adds a bit of an organic feel to an otherwise hard edged geometric block.

#9 Doris

This is the kind of low contrast block that will fade into the background and allow other blocks to shine in the finished quilt.

#9 Doris

I like the blue star in the center

#9 Doris

#9 Doris

This one almost looks as if it doesn’t have seams.

#9 Doris

#23 Dawn

The center of this block is Kona Indigo. It does not quite match the black that makes up the body of the horses in the outer shape. I am hoping that it won’t pop out too much in the final arrangement of the quilt.

#23 Dawn

#29 Bev

I love the way the horses circle behind the star.

#11 Susan

I love this block. This Susan is destined to be the center of the star in one of my large hexagons.

Glorious Hexagons: The 20th Decade

Here are hexagons 191 through 200.

#48 Jeannie

I wasn’t sure if I was going to like the contrast between the lighter sections of rust in the center of the star and the darker sections of rust fabric that make up the points of the star. I think I might have been happier if they matched more closely, but the contest is growing on me.

#48 Jeannie

I like the way the horse heads grow from the points of the star.

#48 Jeannie

#48 Jeannie

This is one of my favorite Jeannie blocks. I really like the way the diamond patterned mane sections create a circle just outside the star. I also like the way the rust colored area of the outer shapes reaches out to form another softly shaped star.

 

#13 Judy

This block has great circular motion.

#13 Judy

I like the way the horse heads peak out in this block that is primarily geometric.

#13 Judy

#13 Judy

This Judy needs a little bit of repair before she gets incorporated into a large hexagon unit. If you look carefully you will see that the lower left outer diamond was put in backwards. I’m too lazy to make that change right now, but I will be doing it soon.

#13 Judy

Note to self: hexagons that are divided evenly in half make cool Judy blocks.

#9 Doris

Note to self: Cut kites so that a linear element is perpendicular with one of the outer edges of the kite for interesting results. The circle created by the little triangles was a surprise.

Glorious Hexagons: The 19th Decade

With 30 more hexagons to share, here are the next ten hexagons, numbers 181 through 190.

#54 Kim

#54 Kim

#48 Jeannie

#48 Jeannie

#54 Kim

The last five blocks in this post represent the first five blocks that I completed while I was on vacation in Boston at the U.S. Go Congress a couple weeks ago. I completed 30 blocks while I was away. I had prepared bags of basted paper pieces ready to sew together into hexagons.

#48 Jeannie

#48 Jeannie

#48 Jeannie

#48 Jeannie

 

#48 Jeannie

Glorious Hexagons: The 18th Decade

I have forty more hexagons left to show.

Here are the next ten, hexagons 171 through 180

#1 Marie

This Marie made from the panel fabric. The way the shapes matched up in the center was a happy accident.

#54 Kim

The eyes have it on this block and the next two blocks as well.

#54 Kim

#54 Kim

#54 Kim

Battling horse snouts make for an interesting visual effect.

#40 Niki

I love the surprise appearance of the interesting white star in the center of this block.

#40 Niki

A slim cut of fabric that is not particularly interesting in and of itself manages to blend nicely with the yellow triangles. The long shape divides itself into two design elements and a buzzsaw emerges in the center of the block.

#40 Niki

Horse cheeks make this block interesting. .

#9 Doris

I love it when the panel fabric does the heavy lifting on a Doris block.

#9 Doris

Once again the panel fabric is doing the heavy listing in the above Doris.

Glorious Hexagons: The 17th Decade

First let me start by saying that I once again find myself woefully behind in posing my progress on this project. I have five large hexagons units that have not been posted yet. I also have over 50 regular size hexagons to post, thirty of which were completed while I was away at the U.S. Go Congress two weeks ago.

To avoid visual overload for my viewers I will present these items in a few posts over the course of the next couple of weeks.

Following are hexagons 161 through 170.

#54 Kim

You’ve seen this Kim before. I was showing the 16th decade of blocks and included this Kim and the following Kim. I did this because they were the last two blocks made from the panel fabric that I had made into a three layer stack that I deliberately cut exclusively into Kim and Doloris blocks.

#54 Kim

I love the birds in the panel fabric.

#53 Liza

The outer horses come from the running horses fabric. The inner diamonds are cut from the panel fabric. This is not strictly a Liza because the central hexagon has been composed of diamonds.

#54 Kim

Sometimes the eye just needs to rest.

#54 Kim

There are actually two other blocks exactly like this cut from a six layer stack. So I have three of these to scatter across the surface of the finished quilt if I so desire. I might even put them into a single large hexagon and see how that plays.

#54 Kim

I love the blue horses in this Kim.

#48 Jeannie

I had mentioned wanting to try using Kona solid fabrics for the insides of Jeannie blocks. I did that here for the first time and you will see more of these blocks. They will make their appearance when I post the blocks that I made during the time that I was at the Go Congress recently. I think that this block might have been more effective if I had not matched the central solid so well with the horses in the outside shapes. The yellow becomes dominant in this block when you see it from a distance and the star becomes lost. I should have matched the darker rust color in the print instead.

#8 Marina

I like the subtle look of this block with the contrast between the large dense swirls in the outside shape and the small circles on the inside hexagon. These shapes were all cut from the same fabric. This block might be best used as the inside of a star on a large hexagon unit.

#8 Marena

Here is the same block made with the exact same fabric except in a different color. This time I swapped the inside and outside patterns. The center of the blue block pops out and the center of the yellow block moves back in space.

#1 Marie

This block was made with some left over sections of the panel fabric.

My First Time Traveling With EPP Handwork

Last week I attended the U.S. Go Congress in Boston. I traveled via train to and from Boston. I knew that this was going to be an ideal opportunity to travel with my EPP handwork. I am currently working on a quilt based on the Glorious Hexagons group on Facebook, and I took that work with me to the Go Congress.

I planned ahead of time to have sandwich bags filled with pieces pre cut and pre basted to paper pieces. I prepared over thirty such bags, and my blocks were ready to sew. For travel I packed my sewing supplies into a small carry on bag that would fit easily at my feet on the train.

I packed my sewing supplies in one #2 Tupperware Modular Mate box, and I packed my sandwich bags with precut pieces in another #2 Tupperware Modular Mate box.

These boxes fit nicely into my carry on bag leaving enough room for a couple of books, my iPad, a charging cable, and some snacks.

I completed a few blocks on my way up to Boston on Amtrak.

The real stitching started in ernest once I got to the Go Congress. I played a game in the U.S. Open each morning, but my games were fairly quick, about an hour each. After finishing my morning game I would move from the playing area into the adjoining lounge area where I would sit and stitch, often talking with friends, and sometimes watching a game review.

A few days into the Go Congress I had finished piecing ten or more hexagons. The one on the top of the pile above happens to be my favorite one that I pieced during the congress. I am planning to make a few more of this block taking advantage of the linear elements in the Embracing Horses Panel Fabric.

It wasn’t all go playing and stitching last week. There was plenty of eating as well. I deviated from my usual Vegan eating philosophy to take in a bit of dairy as well as some sea food.

The Boston University cafeteria had soft serve in the evening. I usually had a cone after the evening meal, and sometimes a second after sitting and consuming the first cone while talking with go friends.

My go friend Larry and I enjoyed a lobster roll for lunch. We tried to get into Neptune Oyster for dinner, but there was an hour and a half wait for a table for two. So we sauntered down the street and got pulled into another seafood restaurant, the name of which escapes me. There I had four blue point oysters. I would have had more, but they were quite pricey.

I also had a pound and a half lobster over linguine. The tail meat was easy to get to since the lobster had been cut in half. I had to struggle with the claws though, but it was worth it. They had what they called a “lazy man’s lobster: which had been shelled and served with linguini. Perhaps I should have gone that route. I was very glad I did not have to meet the lobster before it arrived at my plate. Even though I was never an ethical Vegan, I could not help but learn a few things that give me pause when I consume animal products.

When I took the photograph of my food the waiter offered to take a photograph of my dining companion and myself. Larry and I had a great time on the Wednesday day off in the middle of the week taking in four museums, lunch, and dinner off campus.

Back to the stitching…

I completed thirty of the basted blocks that I took with me. On the way home I traveled with two go friends on Amtrak. One was headed for Philadelphia and the other down to Virginia, perhaps getting off at DC. We started off in the regular coach area, but decided to try our luck getting a club car table. We managed to snag one. That made the remainder of the trip so much more enjoyable. Allan, a strong Dan level player, reviewed the one game I had recorded at the congress. He also reviewed a game for Neil. The three of us were able to talk easily at the table and had a great time chatting the hours away.

After the game reviews were over I pulled out my stitching and worked while we talked. The conversation centered on my hexagon work for awhile. I had come prepared with some photographs marked as favorites on my iPad. I knew this would make it easier to explain to people what I was doing, and where the work was heading.

Here are the thirty blocks that I completed during my trip.

I still have 25 blocks that I had previously finished that that have yet to be shown. I will show them over the next week in groups of ten. So the blocks above will have to wait for their individual presentation until after I have presented the hexagons from the seventeenth and eighteenth decades plus five more blocks. The blocks above represent hexagons 186 through 215.

Though I will not show individual blocks up close I will say how many of each type of block I completed and show the corresponding pile of blocks.

I made nine blocks of #48 Jeannie.

I made five blocks of #13 Judy

I made seven blocks of #9 Doris

I made two blocks of #33 Kerry

The remaining blocks were singletons consisting of one of each of the following:

#29 Bev

#11 Susan

#8 Marina

#2 Carol

#1 Marie

#34 Christie

#10 Kelly

Kelly is the one shown in its entirety on the above pile. I really like her with these fabrics. I liked using a fabric with a linear feel for the central pieces of Kelly. I will be making a few more of these with other patterns.

I really had fun at the Go Congress this year, and one of the reasons I had such a good time was that I was able to keep stitching through the event.

Next year the congress will be in San Diego. I’ll be getting some guide books ahead of time and will perhaps go out three days early to make it into a real vacation.

Glorious Hexagons: Stacks, Stacks, and More Stacks

I’ll be away from home soon for a week, and I want to take enough basted hexagon pieces to last me for handwork through ten hours of train travel as well as any idle hours during my week away from home. When I started to think about this I was faced with some remnants of previous layer stacks which I exhausted of useful cuts. I made those cuts with no particular use in mind. After that I looked at my piles of yardage and decided that it was time to take inventory and make up layer stacks for every fabric in the Embracing Horses collection.

Since January, when I started making Glorious Hexagons, I have scoured the internet and purchased a great deal of fabric from the Embracing Horses collection. Every once in awhile someone from the Glorious Hexagons Facebook group will ask me how much fabric I bought for this quilt. It is a reasonable question to ask, but not an easy one to answer. I can’t imagine that one could possibly plan out a Glorious Hexagons Quilt well enough to buy the fabric in advance.

The Glorious Hexagons project is by its very nature an evolving work. I may still seek out and purchase more fabric as I continue. There was a time when I was loath to add any solids to the mix, but I changed my mind about that when I started to assemble large hexagons using triangle shapes. I found Kona Solids that worked well with my fabric, so anything is possible.

This post will be an attempt to express how much fabric I have remaining to date of the various fabrics that make up the Embracing Horses collection. When people ask me how much fabric I have bought I will be able to refer them here.

Let’s start out with the big reveal of the huge pile of layer stacks that I was able to create over the course of the past week. This pile is composed of layer stacks (using six layers) of every one of the ten fabrics in the Embracing Horses collection including the Panel Fabric, which I have divided into Section One and Section Two segments.

Above I show 20 yards of fabric cut from ten different patterns and pinned into stacks with widths of 8 inches, 12 inches, and 24 inches.

I will show the various stacks below so you can see the individual patterns clearly.

I made two stacks of Section One of the Panel Fabric.

I made two stacks of Section Two of the Panel Fabric.

The four stacks from the Panel Fabric, being approximately 24 inches wide, represent eight yards of fabric. They are pictured folded for storage so they do not show off the full pattern of the fabric. I will show them unfolded below.

I wasn’t sure at first if I would enjoy working with these panels. But after I started to cut into them to make Kim blocks I really fell in love with this fabric. It is my favorite fabric in the collection. I still have twelve more yards of this fabric in the form of 18 panels. In addition to the panels shown above there is a small strip at the bottom of each panel with gold lettering. I have not yet decided how I will make use of those. I have used some of that fabric so far to cut brown tone on tone pieces from the background.

Here we have stacks that are eight inches wide of what I call the Running Horses fabric and the Jumping Horses fabric. These stacks amount to 48 inches of yardage each. I have six yards remaining of the Running Horses fabric, which is enough to make three more layer stacks. I also have an additional yard of the Running Horses fabric.

I have three more yards of the Jumping Horses fabric, which is enough to make two more layer stacks with 12 inches left over.

I have found both of these fabrics to be quite useful in the creation of my Glorious Hexagons.

Here we have stacks that are eight inches wide of the Birds on Yellow fabric and the Birds on Black fabric. These stacks amount to 48 inches of yardage each. I don’t have enough of either of these fabrics to make another layer stack. I do have eight inches of the Birds on Yellow fabric and 24 inches of the Birds on Black fabric. These are the fabrics that I like the least in the collection. They each have their charm, but I have not enjoyed using them in the hexagons very much. I doubt I will order more of either of these.

Above we have an eight inch wide stack of the Blue Mane fabric. We also have a twelve inch wide stack of the Blue Mottled fabric. The top stack amounts to 48 inches of yardage and the bottom stack amounts to two yards of fabric.

I have about two yards of the of the Blue Mane fabric remaining, unfortunately it is in three separate pieces, so I am not sure that I could piece together a stack from what I have. I have only a couple inches left of the Blue Mottled fabric.

Above we have an eight inch wide stack of the Rust Mane fabric. We also have a twelve inch wide stack of the Yellow Mottled fabric. The top stack amounts to 48 inches of yardage and the bottom stack amounts to two yards of fabric.

I have a yard piece and also a 24 inch piece of the Rust Mane fabric left. I have a yard left of the Yellow Mottled fabric.

Finally we have the fabric that started it all, the Horse Head Fabric. Above we have a twelve inch wide stack which represents two yards of fabric. I have at least eight yards left of this fabric, which is enough to make four more stacks.

So this is what I’ve got. I have twenty yards of fabric already make into stacks, and 40 more yards, most of which can be made into stacks in the future. I think there could be a few quilts here. I certainly have enough fabric to explore many possibilities, especially with the introduction of solids.

This post is about the fabric I have remaining. What I had used up to this point is anyone’s guess. I’d guess at least ten yards, probably more. So we have in excess of seventy yards of fabric purchased to feed my obsession with this project and whatever projects emerge from the remains.

A word of advice to anyone who wants to stick with a collection of fabric for a Glorious Hexagons quilt… Pick a collection still in print and save yourself the need to scour the internet.

Glorious Hexagons: Assembly Ideas

I’ve already committed myself to assembling my three inch Glorious Hexagons into larger nine inch Glorious Hexagons. I’ve shown ten of the large hexagons so far. I can continue to put these units together knowing that they will make a fine quilt some day, but I must eventually decide how to put these larger units together, and how to finish off the edges.

I see three possibilities for assembly.

First, I can lay out the large hexagons side by side without any extra shapes. The disadvantage of this is that the individuality of the large hexagon units becomes lost. If I come to regard the large hexagon units as a convenient means of breaking down the work of assembly rather than individual design elements I can accept that result. The real advantage of the layout is that the design takes on a random jewel like quality. This makes it much more in keeping with the spirit of the Glorious Hexagons quilt idea than the other two layouts I will present.

A closeup of the first layout idea shows that new elements emerge where the edges of the large hexagons come together. Chocolate diamonds come forth. In addition to that medium sized (six inch) hexagons are formed. Those medium sized hexagons are composed of three small hexagons and three Chocolate diamonds. The design is essentially composed of three inch, six inch, and nine inch hexagons. The nine inch hexagons, however, become virtually lost in this layout.

The second assembly method involves the use of large triangles as setting pieces used to assemble the large hexagons into rows. Each triangle is nine inches on each side and is composed of one three inch hexagon and three solid Chocolate triangles. The large hexagons do not become completely lost in this method of assembly, but they do fade away a bit, and perhaps the only reason I can see them is because I worked so hard to put them together.

If I were to pursue this second method of assembly I might want to create hexagons specifically designed for the setting triangles. Those hexagons would have centers that would echo the star shapes of the larger hexagons. The images below show this concept in action.

Some of these central star colors are better suited to these jewel pieces shown above. They are offered simply to give the idea of what can be achieved with the use of solid colored stars in the smaller hexagons. Using these stars in the setting triangles might allow the large hexagons to stand out more.

The third method of assembly also involves the use of large setting triangles to assemble the large hexagons into rows. In this case each nine inch triangle is composed of one solid Chocolate three inch hexagon as well as three solid Chocolate triangles. This results in a solid Chocolate nine inch triangle. This method preserves the integrity of the large hexagon units very well if that is to be desired. It also creates a new element in the form of a chocolate star the same size as the various colored stars that make up the centers of the large hexagons.

The three choices range from chaotic, to less chaotic, to ordered. It is no surprise that my husband has a preference for the final method. I do not have a preference myself at this time. I am likely, however, to put the quilt together using the third method to please my husband. I am also likely to continue to create more large hexagons with my wealth of fabrics in the Embracing Horses collection. I will then put together a quilt or at least a wall hanging using the first method.

Once an assembly method is chosen the last thing that needs to be considered in the assembly of the quilt top is how to finish off the edges. The drawing above represents the upper left corner of the quilt top. Along the side of the quilt there will be triangular areas that must be filled. I need to decide how far to extend the edges and plan for the assembly of units to occupy the spaces along the sides. I also need to consider how I am going to finish off the top and the bottom. If I am going to do a standard bias binding I must add some fabric to the top and the bottom so the binding will not extend onto the hexagon shapes. The markings along the top show a solution that will extend the edge by an inch and a half.