Wanderings and Wonderings
This quilt, that I call Wanderings and Wonderings, has changed it’s mind a few times about what it wanted to be. I originally saw this fabric on paper at Spring Quilt Market in Minnesota. The fabric is call Forest Frolics designed by Heidi Boyd for Red Rooster Fabrics. On the plane ride home from Market, I designed a soft book with this fabric. I planned to make it differently than others I have seen and planned to write a tutorial.
That remained the plan for months. I waited for the fabric to come out. Then, I waited for the fabric to come out. Then, I thought I wasn’t going to get my hands on all of it. We don’t get a lot of it in quilt shops around here, and I was only finding pieces online. I wasn’t finding it because it wasn’t quite out yet. It feels like it takes forever for fabric to come out after Market, don’t you think???
When I thought of other fabric for what I was planning, I was sad. This fabric was perfect for what I was planning! I had about decided to put my idea on the shelf and wait for another line to come along that would also be fun.
Then, I was able to get a fat quarter bundle!!!
I continued on with the soft book idea. For this, I found some animal and nature poems that would be fun to read to kids. I had them printed at Spoonflower to put in the soft book because I have never worked well with iron on transfer. I even came up with the name of the soft book, Wanderings and Wonderings!
I went with the poems because at Spring Market in Minneapolis, I noticed poetry many places we went. The more I thought about it, the more everywhere we went in Minneapolis felt like a poem. My respect for poetry deepened. I wanted my kids to be exposed to simple poems to help them appreciate the artistry of words, poems.
I started with the poems and the panel that came with the fabric. I had a lot of fun with the poems and animals. I framed them different ways making 20 – eleven inch blocks. Then I set about creating the soft book. FYI – 20 is way too many pages for a soft book! This book would have been massive!
The blocks got to sit for a couple days as I tried to figure out what to do next. Several ideas when through my mind, but none stuck. Then, I was showing some of them to my 5 year old daughter. She said that I should make a quilt so we could read it while we were sitting with it. Of course! This time it took my daughter to translate what the blocks wanted to be.
After that, it flew together. I couldn’t stop working on it. I used practically every scrap of fabric that I had to make 10 more blocks to make the quilt.
I love how it turned out!
Besides making the blocks, I loved embellishing the quilt with hexagons. The fabric has a print in two colorways with little animals in a twig hexagon frame.
Helen Stubbings’ fusible hexagons were the perfect product for the hexis. I have been using the 1″ size for English Paper Piecing for a couple years. I love them! For this project, I used the 1 1/2″ size. When I laid the iron on hexis on the back of the fabric, I could see through it just enough to iron them on where I wanted and fussy cut around them. Once they were glue basted, I could play!
With many blocks, I added one hexagon onto a block. I put one or more on each poem block. One of the blocks I made simple on purpose to sew a hexiflower onto it. I think the hexagons are my favorite part!
Sometimes I made mistakes. Working with limited fabric, I quickly learned to just roll with it. The bear paw block was made too small on accident. It was easy to frame that one. The flying geese units were made too big. I added a spacer and let them take up the entire border instead of just part of the border. With such random blocks, mistakes just made for more randomness.
When I finished, I asked my daughter if she wanted to sit and read the poems with me. She said okay, but not all of them. By the time she was ready to be done, we had read all of them! This is one of my new favorite quilts! I’m still going to work on the soft book idea though!