I worked on some hand quilting this week that wasn't very relaxing. I started with outline stitching the hexagon blocks on my Save The Bees quilt. But it was hard work and not as enjoyable as I had envisioned. Perhaps it was because I couldn't find the right needle for the job, or maybe it was the Warm and Natural batting that isn't good for hand quilting?
I tried a few different needles but the it needed to have a large enough eye for 3 strands of floss, yet be sharp and narrow enough to go through the quilt layers easily. Although it was hard on my hands (the circular needle pull was helpful) I persevered to get it done. I had planned to outline each hexagon but decided just to go around the outside of the grouping of them instead.
Once that job was done I treated myself to some relaxing hand quilting and finished another Life is Beautiful alternate block. It has vertical and horizontal lines stitched through the middle of the block, and then two circles to stitch. I also make a large basting stitch around the outside of the block to keep it in good condition while it sits for years in the refrigerator waiting for the rest of the project to be made.
See the block pile on the right hand side of the top shelf? The fridge is not being used for food storage and it makes a great block storage unit! You can see the Omigosh blocks on the left side of the top shelf, the Maverick stars on the bottom left, little Arrowhead blocks in the middle, and I don't know what that is on the bottom right!
So today I'll be quilting another Life is Beautiful block to add to the growing pile of finished blocks.
What are you hand stitching today?
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I personally don't like Warm & Natural for hand quilting. My all time favorite for hand quilting is a wool batting, 2nd choice is Hobb's 80/20 batting.
I'm glad you posted that, Gretchen. I'm a Warm & Natural user when it comes to longarm quilting, but I never thought about hand quilting. I learn so much from comments like that. I have a lot of pieces of Hobb's 80/20. When it comes time to hand quilt I will use that.
I always love looking at the detail of your hand quilting. You can tell you've had so much practice. Fun way to store your quilting blocks. Happy stitching.
I love that you use an old fridge for block storage. I'm thinking that I might be able to re-purpose an old TV cabinet for a similar use. Your hand quilting looks very pretty. Thanks for the heads up on Warm & Natural batting. I only do a little hand quilting, but it must be fairly easy or I won't do it at all.
My go to batting is Warm and Natural (or white), sorry it's not nice for hand quilting. The hexes look great and it has to feel great to get that detail done. Hope you get in lots of (easier) hand stitching done today.
I dislike Warm and Natural and never use it. I might be ok for machine stitching as Gretchen says but I do not like it for hand work at all the one quilt I used it for took me almost double the time to hand quilt then normal
I feel reassured by this weeks post because I've just spent last week struggling with hand quilting my hexi quilt using the warm and natural wadding!! But I will not use it if I ever decide to hand quilt again! I've got a long way to go on this one though!!
I’ve had that same problem with Warm and Natural, and thank Gretchen for her thoughts on batting for hand quilting.
Are you hand quilting all of the bees quilt or just the hexagons? I have only done a few hand quilted projects...all small wall hangings. The wool batting sounds like it would hand quilt easier...I may try that the next time I hand quilt a project. I had forgotten about your fridge storage...do unsuspecting guests ever look in the fridge for something to eat and find your quilt blocks instead? Happy stitching!
It's a rainy day today, perfect for watching the games and doing a bit of something by hand. I don't have a binding to do, but I do have an idea for a wool work project.
Great idea- I don't see better reason to have a refrigerator or a kitchen
Warm and Natural is not a hand quilters friend, but your stitching really looks lovely!
I think your stitching is beautiful, but I'm sorry to hear you struggled with it! I don't have a lot of experience with hand quilting, so reading the comments on your post is helpful for me, too. I'm going to look for some wool batting for my next hand quilting project!
Your hexi table runner is lovely, definitely worth the work. Refrigerators are great storage places for things that can fade.
Despite the struggles your Save the Bees hexies look great.
I agree with everyone about the quilting with Warm and Natural...wool batting is like quilting through butter and once you try it that's all you'll ever want to use!
How much i left for the Life Is Beautiful quilt? I have been watching your progress and look forward to seeing the finish.
Thank you for sharing your experience with warm and natural....as I hope to have the GFG into a flimsy soon, I was wondering about how to hand quilt it. A big thank you to everyone who has shared their experiences as well! Seriously, Kathy, I so appreciate your Slow Stitching link up. I've been reading it for years. Blessings and stitching love to you!
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