My sweet blogging friends! have we had some weather in Texas this winter. Some of the coldest and wettest I've experienced. But today has been very pleasant, in the upper 60's and sunny! I love sunny days. I am appreciating the sun more right now because for about 3 weeks, we have not seen any--only rainy and wet, wet, wet!
This leads me to today's post topic~~~~~~~~
English Paper Piecing---A method of using paper to stabilize small pieces of fabrics as they are folded and tacked around the paper then sewn together in small groups and then sewn together to accomplish your desired project. Grandmother's Flower Garden is a pattern that became very popular in the 1930s. I began mi GMFG as a TV project. Small pieces of fabrics that would otherwise be discarded can be made use of in this way. Small flexible card stock is my paper of choice. The kind you find as an advertisement in a magazine. Possibly as a magazine subscription card. Each side of my hexagon shaped template is about 1 inch.
I searched out a tutorial and finding it, I also found this precious Travel Kit. I was hooked-- my heart fell in love with this quilt making process, although I have not put one together, I am still just making EPP flowers!
The tutorial and the pattern is awesome and is the best travel kit I've ever had. The size is great! It holds everything needed with room to spare. The biggest plus is it is absolutely adorable! At first glance you know what it is for and what is inside. By using your favorite fabrics, you can make it your own Mine closes with one of my favorite pearl buttons!
The inside has 3 convenient compartments. I put my finished hexie flowers in the front pocket and still have two compartments for other supplies.
The sides are accordion style!! This is about the best design I've seen! No matter how much you stuff into this little kit, you can bet it will fit! Even a small light.
An extra pattern for a delightful little pin cushion is also available. I made one and attached it to the inside flower. I can put the pins in sideways and still close my kit. The magnetic closure is one of my favorite features.
Here are a few of my sets waiting to be stitched. Picking fabrics for my flowers-----AAAAHHHHH-- I love the fact that all my favorite fabrics from different projects can be used together so that I can be reminded of them all. I love auditioning centers until I just can't wait to get the flower made to see how precious it looks. (I know you all think I 'm a little crazy).
Let me show you my process~~~~~
I use to use a glue stick to attached my hexie pattern to my fabric, but have resorted to a pin. It makes taking those papers out so much easier. I fold the corners right under left going counter clockwise, continuing all the way around, tacking as I go.
Then I begin whip stitching the hexies together starting with two petals, then add the center. I use matching thread, but here I have used contrasting thread so that you can see the stitches. My needle is a straw and I pinch the hexies together as I go so as to keep the sides matched.
As you are stitching around the center, you will need to travel your needle to another corner. Start at the corner you ended with to the adjacent corner you need to go to traveling under the fabric being careful not to go through the paper onto the front of the flower. In above pic see that where I entered and exited from the back of my hexie.
Sometimes you will need to bend one hexie to get to your stitching point but that is OK! It seems to me that the more I use my papers the better they work. They become flexible and have a memory so that they know exactly what to do and when to do it!
When I get through with 4 or 5 hexie flowers, I take the papers out. Most tutorials tell you to leave the papers in to stitch them together, but I have found that I like taking the papers out so that I
can use them again and I don't have to have so many papers. After the papers are removed, I take my flowers straight to my ironing board. I spray them with Magic Sizing and give them a good press.
Aren't they pretty!!