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Sunday, August 25, 2013

Celebrate Hand Piecing

I realize this is a "hand quilting" blog, but I want to share my current project which is in the process of being hand pieced.

In 2010, when the Dear Jane's and Farmer's Daughter were all the rage,  I started this project which is my USA quilt.  Each block represents a state and the red fabric was purchased or sent from the state it represents.  The block represents that state either by name (Ohio Star, Road to California) or symbolism (Bear Paw for Alaska, Orange Peel for Florida).

The project stalled out for quite a while when I was missing fabric from certain states, or lacked inspiration for a block to make.

At a quilt retreat in July, I cranked out the last 11 blocks, a task made possible by my relaxing the rules.   Basically, if the fabric was part of the collection donated or collected for the project, it qualified for all blocks.

Why hand pieced?

I had attended a fairly large quilt show and was struck by the fact that not a single quilt in the show was completely done by hand.

Hand applique was machine quilted.

Machine pieced was hand quilted.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.
It just made me realize that I don't own a full sized quilt that was both hand pieced and hand quilted.

So this is it.

And eventually, the quilt will have a hand pieced sibling which I started with the leftover pieces that were sent for the state blocks.

Hopefully by the time our weather cools down enough for me to enjoy sitting on the couch with a lap frame, I'll have this quilt pieced and sandwiched for hand quilting.


  1. I love the red and white colors!

  2. genial esta idea!!!
    me gusta

  3. beautiful quilt - yes some of us still do it all by hand! love your quilt. My Joseph's Coat quilt was completely done by hand right down to the binding - you are right most in the shows are not completely done that way -- it can be so relaxing!

  4. I gotta say, your stitching looks so fine, regular, and perfect that at first I thought it was machine stitched. Good for you to take on this challenge. And I like your Ohio block, especially since our state color is red! You're an inspiration. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Your blocks look great. Clever planning on making a state quilt. I love hand piecing and hand quilting. Thanks for giving hand piecing its well deserved attention especially at the larger quilt shows. I'm in total agreement with your post.

  6. Pleased to hear you have done all your blocks, the quilt is a great idea. I hear what you say about the exhibitions - it is very rare to see a completely hand stitched quilt, but I do my best to raise the numbers ;)

  7. I love your quilts. I need to get some of mine finished. Looking at yours is an inspiration for me to start working more to finish them.

  8. Love your quilt story and your strong finish of making those blocks! And to have a companion quilt out of the scraps is super cool... Wish I wasn't so intimidated with hand piecing since I love hand quilting soooo much! lol Thanks for a great post! Kathi

  9. Love the story behind your wonderful pieced blocks - and red and white! Perfect!

  10. Love your quilt!! I have hand pieced and hand quilted for forty years and dont even own a sewing machine. All my quilts are donated. The only one i have kept is the one i made for my daughter, an only child, before she died in my arms. God and quilting got me through it. When i worked, ididnt have the foresight or common sense to build a fabric stash. Now i am disabled and receive less than four hundred dollars monthly. So buying fabric batting backing etc is no longer an option. There are no thrift stores, quilt guilds etc in my area that i can turn to.
    I am so glad there are people out there besides me that likes to quilt by hand. Keep up the great work and quilt on!! babscorbitt@ gmail dot com

  11. I used to hand piece all my quilts and hand quilt them as well. I still do the hand quilting but not the hand piecing as much. It is such a relaxing process!

  12. Love the quilt-hand piecing and quilting is the only way to go-I won't do it any other way. I love my sewing machine, but I use it for non-quilt related items!

    Thanks for sharing.

  13. Beautiful patchwork, have fun with quilting!
    groetjes van Marijke

  14. I love red and white quilts! I also love doing handpiecing and have a great respect for others who do so. I hope you enjoy quilting it.


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