Although lots of people have said what a brave choice of first quilt it was, that really wasn't the case, more that when i googled quilt to figure out how to make one, traditional hexagon quilts appeared in images, and seemed to be the basic, starter quilt. Oh what a fool, silly naive me! So, I found a basic tutorial for making hexagon quilts, cut some templates and found some fabrics to upcycle, and a few in a local shop that were ok I figured for such a quilt. At the time I had no idea about the amazing array of designer quilting cottons, but that's not necessarily a bad thing, as I used some of the old sheets from my babies cot (a cute lemon yellow), the top that I was wearing when I gave birth to her (a kind of jersey cotton type top- not really suitable for such a project but who cares), and some vintage fabrics from one of my mums friends, dated back to the 70's and 80's.
I made a decision early on, not to have a pink, girly quilt, I had just painted her bedroom the sweetest light blue, and wanted something that would take her into adulthood. I had no idea at the time that not only would I want to make her this quilt, that I would catch the quilting bug and want to make her lots more.
So, on long car journeys to my parents, the in-laws, and our numerous friends around the country, Mr HOC drove, and I cut, basted, sewed hexagons and felt like the hours weren't wasted. The hexies were sewn together in fits and starts, sometimes the whole project was put down for a few months at a time, whilst other projects took over, quilts, bags pouches and the like all had their chance to take centre stage, and now it's this quilts time.
The final push began when we moved out in March, and I really could see the end in sight, so I got my skates on, and got focused. I decided early on that every stage of this project would be completed by hand. That just felt right, like I needed to make it with my hands, no sewing machine, and that this would somehow give it provenance, a history, and hopefully when my now 4 year old is older, she can really begin to appreciate all of the work put into it for her.
As part of that, I decided I didn't want to cut the hexagons off straight round the edges, I wanted to keep them whole, and that meant finding an alternative way to bind the quilt- so when I found this method at Badskirt, I knew it was the one. It's been lightly hand quilted in perle, with white around the outside of the binding and to secure the inner part of the binding hexies, and a pink variegated chevron down the middle of the quilt, top to bottom.
So, here it is, 584 hexies in total (481 on the front, 103 as binding), all done, each one around 2 inches along each edge, with my little ones name embroidered onto some of the backing hexies, using the letters from Lu Summers Alphabet print. Total size of 70 x 63 inches (178cm x 160cm) and as far as I'm concerned, absolutely gorgeous. It's scrappy, not all of the hexies were exactly the same size, so I've had to tweak bits of it when sewing together, and I don't care, that's what gives it soul.
So, now It's out of the dryer, it's a bit crinkly, but incredibly soft, and actually that's the beauty of hand worked pieces, if you handle the fabrics lots, over time they soften up in a way that you wouldn't normally get straight away in a machine made quilt, until it had been washed and used a while-so that's why don't I want to let her go to her rightful owner, but I will, but after I snuggle a while longer first, if that's ok.....
And linking up to Karen @Quilty Creations Something Old, Something New.