Friday, April 30, 2010

a new obsession: hexagons!

I've been seeing quilting folks around the blogosphere playing with hexagons lately, and it looked like fun. I've never tried English paper piecing before; you take cut paper shapes (in this case, hexagons), baste your fabric to the paper, and then hand-stitch the fabric together. Later you remove the basting thread and take out the paper. Here is a little flower I made out of hexagons, still with the white basting thread in place:
While hand sewing isn't my favorite, one big draw of this is that since everything is done by hand I don't need to be in front of my sewing machine. I don't have a good knitting project going right now, and need something to do with my hands in the evening. My hexagons are 1" on a side, and it takes a 2.5" square of fabric to cover one paper hexagon. This makes them a perfect size for using up scraps of the 2.5" strips I used on Button's quilt and Brad's quit, so there are lots of fabrics here you may recognize from earlier projects. Making hexagons is really addictive:
After playing around with various shapes and patterns for a bit, I decided that I really like the hexagon shape and wanted to emphasize that, so I'm assembling my small hexagons into larger hexagons, like so:
Then I'll assemble my big hexagons into a quilt top!
I'm having way too much fun.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

not just bathrooms

Not so long ago, I was beginning to fear that I had an unhealthy obsession with bathroom floors.Fortunately, it turns out that, while an excellent source of cool tile patterns, bathroom floors are not the only place to find these treasures. On the way home from the Madison farmer's market this morning, we passed several doorways with sadly neglected but cool tile.
This last one is definitely my favorite and I really must find time to put it into a quilt at some point. Neat, isn't it?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

even in D.C.

If you've been hanging around the blog for a while, you may have noticed that I have a thing for tile floors, which I most often find in bathrooms. Turns out they have interesting tiles in D.C., too!

A ladies room in the National Gallery of Art:

Tonight I had pizza with friends of a friend, and the hostess had an interesting bathroom floor, too!I'm beginning to worry about my bathroom floor obsession. But this seems to be where all the cool old tiles got put and were left alone!

quilting inspriration in D.C.

While wandering around D.C. with friends on this glorious afternoon stolen from the conference, I found a lot of beautiful lines that made me think of quilting patterns. Not patchwork for the quilt top, but the actual lines of quilting to hold the layers together.

This sidewalk drain reminded me of a lot of old rosette-like circular patterns I've seen done on individual (usually solid-colored) blocks of old hand-quilted quilts:
This ironwork (at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden) reminds me more of modern machine quilting patterns. Beautiful, isn't it?

Monday, April 19, 2010

I love people

I'm at a conference in D.C.
Let's get a close-up of that sign:
I love people.