Thursday, 28 November 2019


My Red Centre blocks: tinkering with the layout

It's been a lucky week.

First, I finally managed to break back into my blog after six months of trying to get Google to recognise who I am.  I have no idea how it worked after months of trying old passwords, creating new passwords, new profiles, etc, and I’m happy to be back.

Second, I went to a small country town called Braidwood in New South Wales for their annual ‘Airing of the Quilts’.  Amazingly, I won the Raffle Quilt – the second quilt I’ve won this year.  See my last post about the Berry Quilt.  I could hardly believe it.

Third, when I went to pick up the quilt I met a wonderful group of ladies from Braidwood Quilters, shared a cuppa and a gorgeous chocolate brownie with them, and got to discuss a couple of issues I have with my hexagon quilt with two very talented hand quilters.

But before I pass on their tips, here is the quilt I won. 

Braidwood Quilters Raffle Quilt celebrating 25 years of the Airing of the Quilts 2019

The centre applique was donated to the group several years ago, and when the ladies were discussing ideas for the raffle quilt, someone suggested using the applique block.  After tracking down the donor, who agreed to its use in the raffle quilt, the group got together and designed the rest.  This beautiful medallion quilt was pieced by one group member and quilted by another.  I have an invitation to go back to meetings any time (Braidwood is an hour's drive away from me) and I fully intend to do so.  

I love the antique look and style of my quilt.  It’s not something I would make myself which makes it all the more desirable because it is so different. It takes pride of place on the back of the sofa in my small guest apartment.  Now others can enjoy it too.

The Braidwood exhibition was wonderful and demonstrated a wide range of quilting styles.  Once again I was astounded, and mildly jealous, of the talent and flair displayed by so many people.   I always come away from these events full of ideas and wondering how I might fit in new projects!

The local market swelled with a few retailers selling fabric and notions.  I came away with a few fat quarters for the Giant Hexagon quilt. 

Hexie dilemma

I came across a pattern for this vintage hexagon quilt in a 2010 issue of Australian Patchwork and Quilting (Vol 18 No 9).  This is a vintage quilt circa 1950.  I've been tinkering with the layout of my own blocks (above) to recreate this look.

A vintage hexie quilt circa 1950.  I love the layout.

I’m fascinated with the illusion of tumbling blocks, stars, triangles and zig-zag ribbons.  So, I’ve decided to abandon my original idea to join the blocks with red connectors.  I’ve been going off that idea for some time now because I think the red dominates my blocks too much.

But I’m not fond of white for the connectors.  The main reason is that I dislike seeing the seams on the underside of white blocks.  The other reason is that I’m a bit messy with cutting the hexagons out and I really can’t bear the thought of seeing uneven seams on the underside!

The ladies in Braidwood suggested a good quality cream quilters muslin for the connectors and red for the diamonds. 

We also discussed whether or not I should hand quilt it once the top is finished. The Braidwood ladies advised that I should consider it. One lady commented that one of the judges for the Braidwood Exhibition liked to see that hand pieced quilts were also hand quilted to carry through the hand made theme.  I like that philosophy.

So, there are many more months of work ahead.  I have 5 full blocks, 6 half blocks, and 4 quarter blocks to go before I start on the 1,219 hexagon connectors and 644 diamonds!

Thanks to Wendy at Wendy’s Quilts and More for advising me to keep blocks that are double-ups, or which didn’t quite turn out how I wanted them to.  They will be used as fill-in blocks.  

I have two of these that will be perfect to make two half blocks.  That will cut down sewing time a bit.  However, much as I want this finished, I am conscious of making the quilt the best I can make it, and not settling for just getting it done.



  1. Oh my - you are on a roll of great luck. Congratulations! I like the suggestions that you've gotten from the ladies and totally agree that hand quilting it would be the icing on the cake. I'm working on a forever hand pieced hexie project that I call Minnie but haven't picked it up in a couple of months. Looking forward to getting back to her over the Christmas holidays.

    1. Thank you Marie. It would be good to see your quilt when it is finished. I'm working on a baby quilt now to give myself a break. Btw - I tried to reply to you a week ago but my response disappeared. Hope this one makes it. Thanks again.


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