I am enjoying making these scrappy hexie blocks. Today I decided to dive into the red scraps and I managed to finish 5 red scrappy hexie blocks.
I fell in love with the quilt, Scrappy Hexies in the March / April 2015 issue of McCall’s Quilting magazine and it has been on my “To Do” list since then.
I started my blocks today and I finished my first 7 blocks from my blue scraps.
The pattern in the magazine suggests tracing the hexagon pattern pieces from the magazine pullout section onto template plastic. However, I recently used my discount coupon for Joann’s to purchase a large hexagon shaped ruler which has made trimming the blocks so much easier than using template plastic.
I often make string blocks when I am between projects or if I just want to sew something but I am not interested in focusing. Sometimes you just need to mindlessly sew to wind down after a stressful day at work.
I am always on the lookout for ways to use the string blocks once they are made. This was a quilt that appeared in the July/August 2013 issue of Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting. The quilt is called Rock Island Campfires and was made by Marianne Fons.
Marianne’s blocks were pieced on paper foundations and measured 4.5″ square. Four string blocks pieced together with a cornerstone and sashing measured 10.5″ square unfinished. I pieced my blocks with a used dryer sheet as a foundation and trimmed them to 5.75″ which made my block larger at 13″ unfinished.
I found the perfect fabric for sashing my blocks – a tiny black and white houndstooth – First Crush by Sweetwater for Moda.
These are some of my blocks on the design wall.
Back in 2010, I was inspired by a blog post written by Kim Brackett. Kim’s String Block Tutorial was easy to follow and I started making a pile of string blocks using her technique. Kim never did post a picture of her finished quilt on her blog so I am not sure how she set her string blocks in her finished quilt.
I played around with various settings for my blocks and decided that I liked the blocks set on point best. Today, I finally finished sewing my blocks together into a top. My blocks finished at 9 ” square. At this stage, my quilt top measures approximately 78.5″ x 79.5″. I haven’t decided whether or not I will add a border to this quilt. I like the look of the top without any further borders–the large chaos of colour seems to float on the quilt top. However, I will likely regret not adding a border to stabilize the edges of this quilt when it comes time to quilt it. I am sure that keeping the on point setting of the blocks with the bias edged setting triangles square while quilting will be a challenge I am sure.
It took me 4 1/2 years to get my blocks finished and set into a quilt top. Let’s hope It doesn’t take me another 4 1/2 years to turn this quilt top into a finished quilt. :)
The next time I make this quilt, I think I will make the first square of this block the same size and from the same fabric. I think this will help to “tame” some of the wildness of this quilt and give the eye a place to rest.
I recently purchased Fons and Porter’s Easy Diagonal Sets Ruler. This ruler was a big help when it came time to cut the setting triangles. The following link will take you to a video that demonstrates how to use the ruler: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBfDsLP3P9I
I usually use the method of cutting setting triangles as described by Marti Michell in her book, Quilting for People Who Still Don’t Have Time to Quilt. Marti says to:
Just cut a larger square on both diagonals to yield four setting triangles. To determine the size of the larger square, measure the diagonal of the finished size unit block, and add 1 1/4 inches. this is the size square to quarter for perfect-fit, no-mistakes-allowed setting triangles. I prefer to add 1 1/2 inches to 2 1/2 inches to the diagonal measurement of the block. That size square will yield slightly larger setting triangles which allow the design blocks to float inside the borders.
Using Marti’s method, I would have been cutting my squares 15 1/2″ square in order to get 4 setting triangles. In order to cut enough squares this size for my setting triangles, I would have needed more black fabric than I had on hand. However, using the ruler, I was able to cut my setting triangles from narrower strips of fabric and still have some fabric left over.