Thursday, January 9, 2014

A Link to the Past

Recently I was giving a lot of thought to finding a project that I could work on while traveling.  It needed to be something that wouldn't take up much room, something I could sew by hand and something that would work with interruptions.  I had seen several people working on English paper piecing to make hexagons.  They really didn't interest me.  I didn't think they were very attractive plus they seemed like they would take a lot of time.  The more I looked though, the more interested I became.  There was something about them that drew me in.  It seemed if I were going to do them I should make them with 30's prints.  But I don't really like those prints.  What if I found a soft, buttery yellow (my favorite, favorite color) and used it to set them together?  Maybe then I would like them a little better.  My mother was about to have knee replacement surgery.  I would have a lot of time in the hospital with her.  Common sense went out the window and I decided to give it a try.  I gathered all of the needed items and began my journey into the world of hexagons or hexies, as some people refer to them.  

My mom had successful surgery and Greg and I took her the five hour trip back home where she would spend the next week or so in the hospital having physical therapy.  By this time, I was well on my way to having multiple little pieces in the shape of hexagons.  On the long trip home I began to sew them together.  I am sure Mom noticed what I was doing, but she didn't comment.  She is used to seeing me with something always in my hands.  After a couple of days, Greg and I returned home and my sister went to visit Mom.  

My sister just happened to be visiting with Mom and a cousin of mine.  Apparently my grandmother was a quilter too.  My grandmother, Rachel, made a quilt for her oldest daughter and gave it to her as a wedding present.  Sadly she passed away when Mom was only eleven years old.   My cousin Rosie, who has possession of the quilt, brought it to show my sister.  

At that point, Mom realized it was made with the same kind of little pieces that I had been making for the last week or so.  My grandmother used white and green to set the flowers  and I am using yellow.  She used pieces of outgrown and worn out clothing from my mother and her two sisters.  I used new fabric.  You can feel the love in each tiny stitch she made.  I can only hope others will find the same feeling in mine when it is complete.

I still don't know why I picked up all the little pieces of fabric and began this project.  I keep saying I don't like the pattern and I don't like the 30's prints.  I do love the yellow.  For whatever the reason, I am compelled to work on these hexies.  I limit myself to working on them when traveling or in the evenings while watching television.  I have a hard time stopping when bedtime comes.  I've been asked what size mine will be.  I don't have the answer to that.  It will be done when the quilt tells me it is done.  And maybe, just maybe, my grandmother will have a hand in that too.