Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Cow patties and EPP.....

Hey yall!
 First, thank yall so much for all the kinds comments on my first Lucy Boston block. And I finished my second one today using mostly Bake Sale  by Lori Holt. I am still trying to decide on the type of fabrics I want to use. I am leaning toward 1800's Reproduction prints. Although I have very few of those that are suitable for fussy cutting. But like I said before, if I am going to spend all this time hand sewing a quilt block, then I should spend just as much time deciding on the fabric and the extra time it takes to fussy cut . I really like the way fussy cutting looks in the block compared to a non patterned center.

I have had a few questions through comments and emails regarding the way I sew around
instead of through the paper pieces when I make honeycombs or any EPP for that matter.
So I thought I would give a quick tutorial on howEPP. I don't think there is any wrong way . Just do whatever works for you. I find this a really fast and easy way for me.

  First, center up your paper template on the fabric. I LOVE using my acrylic template from Paper Pieces.com. First it has a 3/8" seam allowance which I like alot better than 1/4" , I can use it to fussy cut my fabric and I use it to center my paper on the fabric.

I like to punch a hole in the center of my paper for easy removal later on. Use a small applique pin to pin the fabric through the hole. You do not have to have a hole puncher, just use the point of your scissors.

Using good cotton thread not too long so it won't tangle, fold over the fabric, finger press and fold over again. Stick the needle through the bottom layer and then the top layer of fabric. Do not sew through the paper.
(And yall , I prob have the ugliest hands with no manicure, but I loose any hopes of having fingernails this time of year around the farm, plus I get freckles!)

Pull the thread through and repeat. Basically you are just doing a whip stitch.

Now, move to the next corner which will be the point. I find it easier to start on the side and then go to the point. Whip stitch the point. If you need to , run your needle under your thumb to smooth the fabric before you sew the whip stitch.

Now just keep going around the honeycomb. I don't pull the fabric extra tight against the paper. It makes it harder to sew the honeycombs together.

. End up at the first corner that you sewed with a whip stitch.

Do not remove your papers! I just removed this one to show you that the honeycomb keeps its shape without the paper piece and you do not have to remove the stitches! No glue to unstick and no basting to take out.

Play around with your honeycombs and see which way looks best. I have alot to learn about fussy cutting. If anyone knows any helpful hints please let me know.
These are really easy to sew and so much fun to make. I can sew these alot easier bumping along in the pickup or tractor than I can embroider . So I really want to decide on my fabric colors and get plenty cut up and ready to take along with me everywhere I go. You would be surprised how many you can get done in just a few minutes here and there!

I leave all my papers in until I am finished. I could probaly remove the inner papers and just leave the outside ring but for now I am leaving them in.

 You can sew the honeycombs together in whatever order is comfortable for you. I sew the four center honeycombs (red), then the next four (aqua) then the next eight (red) then the last 8 (green).
Depending on your background choice, you could either applique the block onto a fabric square at this point or as Lucy Boston did, add 24 background honeycombs surrounding your block.
Now I have a question. Does anyone recognize this line of fabric?

This is a UFO using a layer cake from last year and I really like the stripe in the first photo. I need one more piece of it to have enough for my center Lucy block.
It's kinda like the moon from my Aquarius quilt.  I lost the other honeycomb! It's probaly in the cornfield  if it didn't go through the hammermill! And I sure aint searching cow patties for it!

Yall I am sure this tutorial was just clear as mud, so if you have any questions or suggestions, please let me know. And I received a few requests from our international friends regarding our  "I Love Lucy Bee" so we are going to open it up to everyone no matter where you live. I don't think there is much difference in postage when mailing a standard envelope. Just send me an email if you are interested in joining up. We would love to have you and we will not get started until November. I believe we are just making one block per month.

Have fun yall and Daniel says watch out for those cow patties!
xo jan
And I would also love to give a very warm welcome to two of my newest friends and followers;
Check them out yall! Awesome quilty goodness.
Welcome to the farm ladies. Feel free to grab a tractor from the sidebar and plow along with us.
xo jan


  1. Thank you for the welcome, Jan. Love following your blog and love your quilts. Thanks for joining me at Quilted Chocolate, too.

  2. I am so tempted to start working on these honeycomb EPP...
    esthersipatchandquilt at yahoo dot com
    ipatchandquilt dot wordpress dot com

  3. I sew around the edge also and I need to get me a honeycomb template!!!

  4. Lovely honeycombs! I EPP hexies and find it so relaxing and I, too, am a newbie to fussy cutting. I found Hillbilly Tonya's video helpful -http://www.hillbillyquiltshop.com/video-tutorials/. Can't wait to see more!

  5. Hi Jan...commenting in google to see if I show as no reply!

  6. Thanks for the welcome! I haven't tried EPP yet but I did hand-piece a hexi quilt for my Mom several years ago. I think I will have to give EPP a try sometime.

  7. haha...watch out for those cow patties! You baste exactly like me! Next time I need to share how I baste I will totally direct them to you!

  8. Thank you so much for the tutorial, it makes perfect sense now! I have to admit I was a little confused yesterday when you said you didn't sew through the papers, but now I get it! I bet that saves a lot of time later on, no removing of the basting stitches. So once again, thank you so much for sharing, you learn something every day! Your EPP is looking really great by the way, such lovely fabrics :-)

  9. The tutorial has helped me so much. All your tips are now in my toolbelt. Thanks and I will be following your blog now.
    crystalbluern at onlineok dot com

  10. These are so pretty fussy cut like that! Wow! I wish I could help you out on the fabric but I can't sorry.

  11. Hi Jan, I am a newcomer to your blog all the way from downunder. I am enjoying your blog so much, especially following your Lucy Boston journey. I too have a patchwork of the crosses in progress. A few years ago I was lucky enough to visit Lucy's home in England and see her quilts in person including this one. Her daughter gave us a wonderful tour of the home. Lucy was also the writer of children’s stories. A movie called From Time to Time is based on one of Lucy's books. It stars Maggie Smith, who very early in the movie can be seen to be making a Patchwork of the Crosses quilt. Is the fabric you are looking for a Kaye England stripe? Looking forward to seeing more of your blocks. Judy

  12. I sew my hexies the same way, it is easy and you can reuse them over and over. I love the idea of the hole in the center to secure the paper, brilliant! I am going to have to get a acrylic template like yours, it looks like you are having so much fun making those.

  13. Sorry can't help on ID'ing the fabric. If I come across it I'll let you know.

    Love your Lucy Boston block... reminds me of a pattern I saw in a Japanese patchwork magazine recently. The hole punch/pin method for EPP is clever- must try that (currently using fabric glue to adhere the paper to fabric).

  14. Oh, here's the tutorial - I've been checking out your recent posts! I have a piece of the diagonal stripe and it's Grace by 3sisters for moda.

  15. Love those EEP fussy cuts! How ingenious to punch a hole in the center for a pin to hold in place. I will have to remember that! Thanks for sharing!


Hey yall!
Thank you so much for stopping by my blog today! Your words mean so much to me. Thank you for taking time to leave me a comment and if you have a blog, feel free to grab a tractor button from the sidebar and plow along with me! Ain't no tellin what we'll get in to.
xo jan