Monday, October 17, 2016

Running out of steam -- Morris Hexathon

There are only two blocks left to go in Barbara Brackman's Morris Hexathon and I'm now three blocks behind.  But I have an excellent reason?!
I can't cut any of the pieces for them with my templates.  )-:
And two of the three involve applique -- I can do it, I'm just not confident enough about it to work in such a small scale and I'm hesitant to get involved with the extra seams at some of the intersections .
If I decide I need a full 26 blocks, I may just make a couple duplicates of my favorite blocks or find some interesting variations.
I did make #22 Hyde Park -- H53 and N78 work together for this one!
I used N73c to measure the width of the strip for the small diamonds and then referred back to an earlier post (HERE) to refresh my mind on how to cut small diamonds with this template -- so glad I shared that idea with you so it doesn't get lost.  The sixth picture down from the top in that post was the one I needed.
This is the backside of N78 and you'll notice that I don't take off all the paper when I start using a template -- it's a great anti-skid surface!!  I needed a half hexagon and added my own line to the paper to cut those.
H53 has a dashed line down the center and I used it to line up my template on this stripe for the large diamonds.  I folded the strip in half wrong sides together -- it's an uneven stripe and doing this enables me to create crisp, clean chevrons at the center of the star as you'll see in the following pictures.
Making the three piece units for the outer edge of the block is just like piecing tumbling block units!  Start at the outside edges, stitch to the center dot, and pivot out. 
Here are the outer edge units ready to insert in the three star segments.  I always make 6-pointed stars this way -- the results are so much better for me than making two half-stars. 
You can read my explanation of how I do it HERE in a post from my Diamond Star Playtime series. 
Here are the three completed segments ready to set together into the star. 
The star is ready for the final three outer units. 
And here it is, Hyde Park star.  I like this block and intend to use it in a larger size for a future quilt. 
At this point, it often takes me longer to pick out the fabric than it does to piece the block using the set-in simplified technique featured on my DVD.  It's now been just over four years since Mary O'Keefe shared her idea with me in a set-in piecing workshop and what a blessing it has been to my piecing!!
Here are my twenty-one finished blocks in no particular order.
What do you think?
I really like all the stars, not so crazy about some of the simpler blocks -- they look clunky but Barbara doesn't intend for them to sit edge to edge like this.
At the very least, they will make a great teaching tool during my expanded workshop this winter!
Keep on piecing!!



  1. I like all 21 blocks together. I had to hunt for the simple ones, so that's good. You're doing an amazing job machine piecing these.

  2. I _really_ like what you have done with fussy cutting the stripes to create that star!! Makes me want to rush right out to buy small scale stripes for my own version. 🙂


  3. The Hyde park star looks great, your fussy cutting really adds a lot of interest to the blocks, even "the simpler one" in brown and taupe looks not that simple due to the thoughtful choice of patterns.

  4. Gorgeous blocks, Mary! I know what you mean about referencing your old blog posts. I do that too, and that's the primary reason that I write about what needle, thread, machine settings, etc. I used. It's like being able to do a google search of my brain when I want to do the same technique two years later and I can't remember what I did to be successful the last time! So, you're nervous about applique? I've gotten over the applique fear, but here I am admiring other people's hexies and POTC EPP and feeling like that's MY hurdle that I'm just not ready to attempt yet. You can easily switch out whatever blocks you aren't excited about and do something different. That will just make your quilt more uniquely your own, anyway. All patterns are mere suggestions, in my humble opinion! She who makes the quilt gets to make the rules. :-)

  5. I really like how the fussy cut pieces came together in that Hyde Park star! Very nice!

  6. Wow, lovely collection of blocks coming along here Mary! Love seeing your progress.

  7. I would have sewn the appliqué blocks first as that is my comfort zone. Funny how different we quilters are, eh? :)

  8. Your blocks look great! I agree about some of the blocks looking chunky - but as a whole they work well together. I will need to check out your templates - I do it the old fashioned way. It has been fun sewing for Barbara and seeing what others are making.