Friday, September 7, 2018

Hexie Journey

A few years ago in anticipation of hip surgery I decided to attempt my first hexie quilt project. I'm not sure how lucid my thinking was in choosing a project with over 17,000 half inch hexagons but I'm committed to it now (or maybe should be committed 😜). This is a drawing of half of my quilt.

I do enjoy hand sewing especially in front of the TV. But it seems to have taken years to get not that far on the project (step 2 to be exact) but I also have only worked on it in fits and starts.

I got this far before I realized that I wanted a constant colour in the centre section. So out with the purple. It was a bit tricky doing this delicate manoeuvre but I got it done.

Ah yes. Much better.

I've taken this project on two cruises now, one to the Mediterranean and more recently to Alaska. Some progress has been made but not a lot.

At some point in sewing these this last week I asked myself, "I wonder if hexies could be sewn by machine using invisifil thread?" So after doing some research online and seeing one video tutorial I decided to give it a try on a test flower.


The top one was sewn by hand doing the regular traditional English paper piecing (EPP). The bottom one was my tester done by machine using a small zigzag and invisifil. Nope. Can't live with it. Back to the s...l...o...w sewing. And I'm good with that.

Do you ever think there might be a more efficient way? I always do. I don't always experiment with my ideas but this time I did. This will be a lifetime project and there is no deadline. Filler project. Pour the wine and let's thread a needle. It's a Friday night. I've been on the computer all day and it's time to unplug and slow down.

Until next time,

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Summer Wind-down and celebration

August flew by and it was a hot one here!   My husband and I celebrated our 30th anniversary on August 20, 2018 by taking our first cruise together to Alaska.  We left from Vancouver and returned to Vancouver through the beautiful inside passage. We spent our anniversary in beautiful Juneau.
Beautiful Juneau from our veranda on Nieuw Amsterdam (Holland America).

 We left the smoky BC skies behind and enjoyed some beautiful vistas, fresh air and exercise on the promenade deck (and at the various ports) and some great food.  We would definitely travel with Holland America again.  They are a class act!  From the service, to the food, to the entertainment - it was truly wonderful.
We stopped in Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan and cruised through Glacier Bay. In each of the ports we found quilt shops for me and T-shirt shops for hubby.  All of the stores had benches for patient husbands.  We all have our collectibles hey?

Changing Tides quilt shop in Juneau 

We wandered with the Nav map until we found Changing Tides, just a short walk from the ship. The thing I first noticed was that the style of quilting patterns was quite different than you might find a bit further south.  Here are a couple of quilts displayed at Changing Tides. This is what I was expecting... lots of picture quilts with wolves and other wildlife.

Our Second port was Skagway and the "Rushin Tailor".  I LOVED this store but didn't come home with any purchases as I just I couldn't decide and pennies are tight.  What I did notice in this store was the beautiful wildflower fabrics.  That's not something that I was aware of in Alaska, that their wildflowers are as famous as their wildlife and glaciers.  Sadly, I regret not picking up some of these wildflower fabric, but I'm guessing I could order from them online if I was really that sad about it.

The last quilt shop stop was in Ketchikan at "Whale's Tail" quilt shop.  As this was the last chance to visit an Alaskan fabric store, I did come home with some treasures from here.

What I really liked about the Alaska cruise was that everything was within walking distance from the ship.  We really liked exploring in each port and our Skagway train trip, but have to say that wandering around Ketchikan was probably our favourite.  We only ate on the ship so hubby didn't get to experience his King Crab legs in a local eatery but we're ok with that.  We also REALLY enjoyed the BB King's Blues All Stars nightly in the blues club.  The talent was amazing and we didn't have to fight traffic, pay for parking, or stand in long lines to enjoy a date night enjoying the blues.  Nope.  Just a few minutes in the elevator and we were seated and enjoying the music.

Here are the treasures that I came home with:

Some are gifts for friends and some will find their way into future projects.  Fabric is the best kind of souvenir don't you think?!

It took us a couple of days to get our land legs back but what a great trip.

Until next time,