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Denman Island, British Columbia, Canada
Jean Cockburn retired from her professional career as an academic librarian in 2008 to become a textile artist living on Denman Island, British Columbia. She draws, quilts, embroiders, knits and crochets, makes wearable art, weaves baskets, dyes fabric, and paints watercolours. Her work has been exhibited locally in juried and group shows on Denman Island, in Courtenay, Comox, and Duncan on Vancouver Island, in West Vancouver, and across Canada with the Surface Design Association.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Large hexagons, whither?

I made many large hexagons (1 3/4 inches on an edge, 3 1/2 inches across widest point) when planning my nephew's quilt. It is a Burgoyne Surrounded pattern, as interpreted by Sarah Fielke in Material Obsession 2. Fielke's version is called Charlotte Sometimes and it features circle of brightly coloured fabric appliquéd all over the quilt. I planned to use hexagons instead of circle, and made lots of them from delightful fabrics. I bought a lot of the fabrics from the Pink Chalk Fabrics sale page.

I finished the piecing of the quilt top at our Thetis Island quilting retreat, laid it out on a large table and started placing the hexagons. My fellow quilters were gathered round, all excited to see the project at that stage. As I put out the brightly coloured pieces, we all began to pull back. Finally I asked, "Does this work"? The consensus was that the potential appliqué pieces added nothing to the quilt, and would make it look too busy. I gulped, and realized the group was right. Time to accept the top as done.

Blurry pic, sorry. The appliqués would have gone where the pins are.
Fast forward, the quilt top has been sandwiched and quilted and the binding is going on. It will be revealed at our quilting guild's June potluck lunch, then it will come to Edmonton with us for the wedding at the end of June.

So, now I have a bag full of lovely large hexagons. I am already in the process of piecing a Grandmother's Garden quilt from 1 inch hexies, so no desire to make another one. I decided to make flowers from the large hexies, and appliqué them to background fabric. I had purchased, also from Pink Chalk, a beautiful pack of fat quarters of Robert Kaufman Quilter's Linen in neutral shades and still had 6 pieces left. I supplemented with a piece of Osnaburg (I got mine from Nancy's Notions) and one of Meadowlark Muslin (I got mine from Fabricland, but they do not always have it in stock) for a total of 8. When I finish the appliqué I will make a beautiful set of place mats. I think that I will do free motion machine quilting rather than hand quilting as the quilter's linen is a bit stiff and would be hard to hand needle.

Appliquéing the hexagons to the Quilter's Linen.

All eight pieces.

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