Hi! It’s Kitty from Night Quilter! Today I’m excited to show you an awesome mini quilt I made using the new Hex Star die by Victoria Findlay Wolfe, which is being introduced this week at Quilt Market. As soon as I saw this new block, I thought of the rainbow star on the Artifact fabric from Abacus by Alison Glass (Andover Fabrics). I knew I wanted to recreate one as a wall hanging, since who doesn’t love rainbows!
This block involved piecing my very first y-seams, but it came together really smoothly! That is one of the things I LOVE about using Sizzix dies—everything is cut perfectly, so even tricky joins come together easily.
By the time I got to the sixth and final y-seam, I was a pro, and the center of the star matched up fantastically. Center points as sharp as these warrant a bit of celebration, at least in my book. I used a rainbow of Alison Glass fabrics from throughout the ages for the star, Sticks and Twine from Abacus as the low volume background, and framed it with Endpaper in charcoal from Sun Prints 2016. I added a bit extra border fabric to frame it fully, and called it good! The block finishes at 11 1/2” x 13 1/2”; my Mini Star finished at 15 1/2” x 16”.
After piecing this mini, I pin basted and began by echo quilting around the star with 50wt Aurifil 2600-Dove on my Bernina 560. Then my family passed around an icky sickness, knocking us all out for a week, and I decided that hand quilting might be the more efficient route, since hand stitching is something I can do while sitting with my sick kiddos.
I pulled out my Aurifil 12wt stash and selected the perfect colors. As is my style, I originally imagined some straight line, big stitch, echo quilting around each point of the star, but the more I stitched, the more I wanted to add.
Within in each point of the star, I added a 60 degree diamond, and I used my Sizzix BigZ 2 1/4” Diamonds die to cut a paper template as a guide. It needed a little trim to make it a bit smaller than the die, but with 1/4” trimmed off two sides, it was perfect. I drew my planned stitches on the edge of the paper as a guide and positioned it where I wanted it. I tried both holding it in place and pinning it in place, but neither stayed as straight as I wanted. Ultimately, I decided to join the quilt-marking world and actually draw the stitch lines lightly onto the fabric with a regular pencil.
The thick 12wt thread stitched right over the marks, covering them completely, and resulting in much straighter, quicker, perfect quilted diamonds. Win!
I love how the quilting within the star turned out!
All this hand stitching got me itching for some embroidery, and the pattern on the charcoal Endpaper drew me in. I decided that in lieu of standard quilting in the outer border, I would embroidery-quilt.
I’m not sure if that’s an official term but essentially, I stitched through all three layers, using various embroidery stitches with 12wt Aurifil thread to bring out a few bits of the design on the fabric. Since this is a wall hanging and shouldn’t see much wear and tear, the stitches should sufficiently hold the layers together while creating a really unique aesthetic. I love the effect!
I finished and bound the mini quilt in Nightfall Starshine from Rhoda Ruth by Elizabeth Hartman (Robert Kaufman), but I have a feeling I may jump in and add more embroidery details around the edges. Wouldn’t you?
What a fun, quick project! I’m looking forward to playing with this new Hex Star die a lot more in the future. I can see fussy cut centers, rainbow gradient full quilts, and much, much more! Happy sewing!