Monday, September 28, 2015

What! Again? Another Hexie Quilt Started?!

Mama's Garden, Hexie Quilt by Robin Atkins, hand pieced, embroidered, quilted; detail
If you're a Beadlust reader, you know I worked for three years (more than 1,300 hours) to hand piece, hand embroider, and hand quilt Mama's Garden, with 4,700 3/4-inch hexies, a true labor of love. A big push this spring got it finished in time to enter into the International Quilt Festival in La Conner, WA. Hooray, hooray, the judges accepted it into the show!!!!

Mama's Garden, Hexie Quilt by Robin Atkins, hand pieced, embroidered, quilted
This coming weekend, October 2-4, all you quilting enthusiasts will find it rewarding to make the effort and get to La Conner (WA) for the Festival, where you will see an excellent selection of quilts and fiber arts, plus a variety of interesting vendors! Here is the information. Head first for Maple Hall, a huge 2-story building, filled with quilts, at the corner of 1st Street (the main drag) and Douglas Street! Bring your camera, because photos are allowed (at least in the past they were).

Map and directions to La Conner Quilt Festival
What do you think? After all those hours, would it be crazy to even THINK about making another hexie quilt, another one with 3/4-inch hexies? Well, then I guess I'm crazy, because the irresistible call of the hexie hooked me again. And why not re-use the same paper pieces?

This one will not be traditional, and will definitely NOT be hand quilted. It will be hand pieced, using small left-over fabrics (I refuse to call them scraps), cotton prints (but not batiks). I have no idea how I will arrange them, how big it will be, or anything else about how this new project will develop.

The first step was to cut out sets of  2" x 2" squares (6 per set) to make flower petals. So far, I've cut about 130 sets. Here are 80 of them, ready to baste onto the 3/4" paper hexie pieces.

fabrics cut for hexie flower petals, new hexie quilt by Robin Atkins
From very small pieces, I cut single 2"  x 2" squares to make flower centers. These I've already basted to the paper hexie pieces.

basted hexie flower petal centers, new hexie quilt by Robin Atkins
After basting some of the petals and centers, I started choosing centers for the petal sets. This part is fun! I enjoy "auditioning" various centers until one of them seems right. I'm avoiding high value contrast between petals and centers, because I might want to do a color study with them (no borders).

arranged hexie flower petal & centers, new hexie quilt by Robin Atkins
When the urge gets really strong, I allow myself to start stitching the hexies together to make flowers.

finished hexie flowers, new hexie quilt by Robin Atkins
This quilt will probably have about 650 flowers! I've cut 130 so far, each different. I cut flower petals from all of my small pieces, every one. My preference is to have all 650 flowers different.

Sooooooo, if YOU have some small fabric pieces you'd be willing to donate, I'd love to have part of you in my quilt. This is what I need:

For petals - 2" x 12" strip, or 4" x 6" piece
For centers - 2" square (only one per fabric design)

Quilting weight cotton prints only, no batiks.
One petal set per fabric design (no duplicates).
Prefer small to medium scale prints.

Mail to:
Robin Atkins
1785 Douglas Road #4
Friday Harbor  WA  98250



  1. So glad I checked your blog today! I love your post on the chicks, and the one on flying the coop was just fantastic. And, I love hexies, and love what you do with them. I happen to have a box full of my pre-cut 2" squares. I will try to get some out to you in the mail in the next day or two!

    1. Thank you so much, Debby! Pre-cut 2" squares... WOW, couldn't be better! Getting your squares in the mail will be like Christmas!

  2. What can I say - ca-raazy, but enchanting! Will dive into my fabrics during the next few days, which I have to do anyway for my next textile mosaic.
    Big smile,


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