Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Holiday Hexies

I'm so excited to finally share what I made with some of my hexies that I made last week. I made a holiday wall hanging!


I just love how this turned out and it was a fast project too. Well, fast for me, which was about 2 weeks. It measures 19" x 25" and I used all scrap fabrics. As I'd mentioned in an earlier post, I'm not really a fan of hand sewing but I still think the hexies are cute. After seeing this on Pinterest, I knew immediately that I wanted to make a Christmas tree using hexies. Here's how I made it.

After making the hexies for my tree, I rummaged through my stash to find some white fabric, a large scrap of batting, and some backing fabric. I basted it just around the edges using safety pins, determined where I wanted to tree to be and laid out my hexies. As usual, my assistant Oliver was close at hand to made suggestions.


After I decided on a layout that I liked it was time to secure them temporarily to my quilt top. I just used a dab of glue to keep them in place. Once they were all glued, I then finished basting around the tree.


Now it was time to start quilting. I just did straight line quilting for the hexies, just like in the project I found through Pinterest. After that was done, I stitch appliquéd a little square for the tree trunk.


 For the background, I liked the idea of snowballs at the base and gradually changing to swirls as I moved upward. My favorite thread for quilting is Isacord but what I had on hand was more of a cream color. Plus, I wasn't sure I'd have enough so I opted to use white Aurifil thread instead. I've never quilted with it before, only pieced. It wasn't bad but I think that poly threads (like Isacord) just glide more smoothly for free motion quilting, especially where you have to backtrack a lot (like pebbles). I chose a modern looking font for the Seasons Greetings saying and used a dark red poly thread to outline and paint it. Once again, I used my trusty Press'n Seal to copy the lettering from paper and then sew over it once I placed it on my quilt top.

(Sorry for the less-than-stellar phone picture)
This was probably the most time consuming part of this project. Since the plastic was on top, I couldn't bury my threads as I went along. I had to trace (free motion quilt) all the letters first, carefully rip away all the plastic, and then bury all of the threads. Once that was done, it was time to start thread painting. Not sure if that's the technical term for it but it sounds better than saying "next I quilted little mini hairballs all over the letters." I might go back over a few of the letters (SEAS in seasons) since they aren't as dark as the others. Here's the finished lettering:


When I showed it to my son, he immediately said that we need to get out the train to put under the tree. He's 4 and doesn't exactly have a great sense of calendar time and can't wait for it to be Christmas again so that we can put up our tree and set up our Lego train set around it. It got me thinking that maybe I should add a few gifts under the tree. It'd be easy to appliqué a few even after it's been quilted. So there you have it. A cute little wall hanging for the holidays using hexies.


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In addition to the usual link parties (found here), I'm also linking up to Ho-Ho-Ho...And On We Sew over at Missy Mac Creations, Amy's Free Motion Quilting Adventures, and Free Motion Mavericks at Lizzie Lenard Vintage Sewing.

23 comments:

  1. love your tree, think maybe I will have to do a mini one how big are the hexies you have used? I do not have the fonts for doing writing on my machine, never mind a mini tree will be enough I think

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  2. I have wanted a Lego train set under the Christmas tree since I was a kid. I have the bits for the train from my childhood, but no track. Train envy.
    Love everything about this: the hexies, the pebbles to swirls quilting, the colours ...
    I think I will now refer to thread painting as sewing mini hairballs. It has a ring to it.
    Do you find picking the PressNSeal off a pain?

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  3. I was wondering which no hand sew road you were going down and now I know - looks great! I can see this for hexies on cushions too!

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  4. what a great idea for hexies if you don't like hand sewing :-) I don't envy you burying all those red threads though!

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  5. This turned out so well! I love how the hexies pop out a bit three-dimensionally with the quilting, and the background quilting is great.

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  6. Very cute! I've never felt the urge to join the hexie craze as I didn't feel like hand piecing, but this...now this is something I might try!

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  7. I've seen that method of sewing down hexies but the arranging into a Christmas tree was brilliant. Way to go.

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  8. Brilliant idea and incredible execution, Diana! The tree is so pretty and the lettering looks so professional. Love the quilting! And getting out the tree this time of year just to put the train around it sounds like fun!

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  9. It's gorgeous. I love the furballing of the letters xx

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  10. It's lovely, I don't think that I have the patience for all of that thread burying on the letters :)

    Thanks for linking up to Ho,Ho,Ho and on We Sew too.

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  11. ohhh so cute!!!! I love the the quilting with the snowball going into swirls. And I almost spit my coffee out when I read the hairballs line...you are too funny

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  12. I adore the Christmas tree. I have not really done EPP. I just went on a quilt tour where Bonnie Hunter was along. One day she gave each of us an EPP sample kit and helped us while we were on the bus. I didn't even get two hexies sewn together because I made a booboo and sewed them together with a right and wrong side together. I just was not paying attention to what I was doing. I however like the technique more than I thought I would. I am making a Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt using hand piecing techniques. It has 1" sides. I'm assuming that you made your own pattern from the picture you saw on Pinterest. Great job! I love the quilting. Did you trace the words on the plastic and then put the plastic on your quilt and quilt through the plastic? Did I understand that correctly? BTW - I found you through Kelly at Quilt Infatuation. I adore your site.

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  13. Love this! Is it just the quilting stitches that hold the hexies on once this is done? Brilliant! Gives it great dimension!

    The hairball remark? Hilarious! But don't give your cat any ideas....

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  14. visiting from crazy mum quilts. Love this. The FMQ is awesome

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  15. a terrific project - so simple but effective. Well done. Thanks and also for the linkys

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  16. I love the Hexi tree.....very simple but pretty. Glad to see a hands free use of hexi's.

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  17. Well those are certainly the nicest hairballs I've ever seen - they're not like the ones I used to have to take care of when I had my kitty, LOL! Your wallhanging is just wonderful - it'll be time to hang it out before you know it - that'll make your little guy very happy :)

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  18. Gorgeous mini Diana!!!! So perfect for Christmas. I must try hexies like that. Love it!

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  19. I'm inspired by how your quilted the hexi's....smiles! An adorable little wall hanging.

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  20. Hello Diana,

    Thank you for linking up to Free Motion Mavericks!

    This is a lovely tree, and the quilting for it is perfect. I love the picture with all the hanging threads - a great dose of reality!

    Love, Muv

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  21. Thank you Martha Sue! Sometimes the best projects come from trying to be lazy (read: not liking to hand sew). I can't wait until the holidays to hang it up.

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