The majority of my quilt piecing is done by hand. It’s not because I don’t have a great machine or the space to do the work. It’s just that I prefer the process of piecing by hand. I take pleasure in the creation process of the quilt as much as getting a quilt finished. When I hand piece I find I really get to know the blocks and the fabric. I like the tactile experience of working a needle through fabric at a slow pace. And I like that I can take my piecing anywhere with me. My husband and I carpool to and from work. I get custody of the vehicle so in the afternoon when I go to pick him up, I can leisurely wait in the car and pull out my sewing while listening to an audio book. I never mind having to wait for him because I really enjoy the time I get with my sewing. Jinny Beyer has a lovely book out on the beauty of hand piecing.
Right now I’m hand piecing Barbara Brackman’s Civil War quilt – the one she’s created a blog about. As I don’t have a master plan in my head as to how the finished quilt will look. I’m just cutting fabric as each block comes along. I have a range of material I’ve picked out for the project set aside (browns, deep reds, orangy’s gold etc...) and most are CW repro prints though some are from our local Spot Light discount housewares place. However I think once you become familiar with the typical printing layout of the 1860’s era, many contemporary prints will pass even though they weren’t created as reproductions.
I’ve finished three of the five weekly blocks so far and I’m in no rush. This is going to be a yearlong project as Barbara is posting a block a week. I’ve never participated in any kind of BoM (or in this case BoW) before so this is a first for me. I think I enjoy reading the history of the blocks and the Civil War ear on Barbara’s blog as much as recreating the blocks. If you haven’t yet checked out the blog here is the address: