Category Archives: my English quilt

10 years and still not finished – that epic quilt

For ten years now I have been working on that quilt project. It began as a stupid idea back in 2008. I saw a picture of a 19th century English hexagon quilt in a book and wanted to make it. Since then, I have spent hours and hours sewing 1″ edge to 1″ edge, being tired of it and doing something else and getting back to it months later. I have split the blanket in five parts, so I don’t have to handle the whole quilt top all the time. Now, finally the fourth part is done and attached to the rest, in other words 2900 hexagons. Only 638 more and the top will be done.


The finished measurements of the top will be 2,60 x 2,40m, maybe the edge will add a little more, but that’s about the size it’ll get.

Now this thing is already folded and stored away under the bed, let’s see how soon I’ll find the motivation to go on an prepare the next hexagons.

Dieses Projekt läuft seit 10 Jahren. Alles begann mit einer Schnapsidee im Jahre 2008: Ich sah einen Quilt aus dem 19. Jh. in einem Buch und wollte ihn nähen. Und seitdem nähe ich Hexagone mit 2,5cm Kantenlänge aneinander, immer wieder mit langen Unterbrechungen, in denen meine Motivation futsch ist. 

Ich habe die Decke in fünf Teile geteilt, damit ich nicht immer mit der ganzen Decke kämpfen muss. Nun ist Teil vier von fünf fertig und Teil eins bis vier miteinander verbunden. Anders gesagt: 2900 Hexagone genäht, es bleiben 638  zu tun.

Am Ende wird die Decke ca. 2,60 x 2,40m, vielleicht noch etwas grösser, wenn der Rand dazu kommt. Dieses heute morgen fotografierte Monstrum liegt aber inzwischen schon wieder gefaltet in seiner Unterbettkommode. Mal sehen, wie lange die Pause diesmal wird, bis die Motivation zurückkommt.

See you, bis bald


PS: As you might see, I have disabled the comment function. This for two reasons: the first, and minor one, maybe even an excuse, the vast majority of comments I get is spam and it is just tiring to get through the folder, combing for real comments. The second and major reason is my own lack of comments and answers. I love to read from you, I really do appreciate when you like my things and I really, really do value it when you take your time to comment. And I don’t know why, but obviously I am not able to respond properly and I am very sorry about that. I read your posts and mark them as unread because I want to comment later and never do. I love to read your comments on my posts and still don’t answer. I do feel bad about it, that I don’t honour it enough when you obviously care enough to write some words to me and neither do I want to feel bad nor do I want you to feel bad about me for not reacting. So as long as I am not successful in properly corresponding and interacting with you, I’d like to keep the comments closed. Of course I will keep on writing, I know I have readers who still read (and comment 😉 ) my posts and additionally this is also kind of my sewing diary to document what I have done. There are other ways to reach me, so if you really want to get in contact with me, you can always do via social media or e-mail.


Long term project No. 1

Let’s talk about the only project in this blog with its own category, but which hasn’t had any new post for more than a year, my English Quilt.

And because it has been quite some time, a little resumé:

Back in 2008 I discovered a technique called “English paper piecing”, using cardboard hexagons covered with fabric to patchwork (you can use other forms as well, but the quilt I saw and fell in love with was made from hexagons).  I decided to make my variant of a 19th century quilt, pictured in one of my sewing books.

early scan of the book, the already sewn parts maked with blue ink. On top the book I collect all the fabrics worked with in this project.
early scan of the book, the already sewn parts maked with blue ink. On top the book I collect all the fabrics worked with in this project.

Planning to use this as a bedspread, I went for hexagons measuring 2,5cm on each edge.

A flower? A super-meta-hexagon? Whatever, the beginning, at the same time the blanket's centre
A flower? A super-meta-hexagon? Whatever, the beginning, at the same time the blanket’s centre

From this moment on, there was only one thing left to do: cut cardboard, cut fabric, basting fabric, sew hexagons together



the middle part finished
the middle part finished

and over…

approved by its future inhabitant
approved by its future inhabitant

and over.

finished left part
finished left part

Back in 2012 I finished the left part and since then have been working on the lower part of the quilt. I finished it only some days ago (not because it was so much more work, but simply because I ran out of steam, I just didn’t want to work on this project for quite a long time).

the lower part
the lower part

This is how it looks at the moment. The three parts have been joined together and have to wait now until I will start and hopefully finish the next part.

I had to photograph it lying on the side, to explain the odd angle
I had to photograph it lying on the side, to explain the odd angle

The height is already the final one (there will only be a narrow border around it), in width one part like the one left will be added on the other side.

Statistics: 2203 hexagons done, 1335 to go

Still a lot of work to do, but I’m on my way 🙂

see you soon, love,



This was 2013

Another year is already over. So, let’s have a look how it has been to me:

2013 surely has been one of the most exhausting years of my life, but it also changed a lot.
The first half of the year I wrote my MA-thesis, finished it in summer and finally got my degree in early autumn.

This was undoubtedly the most profund change in my life. As long as I can remember I have either been a pupil or a student, now I am done, I can work, I finished what I wanted to! Stunning, I am not sure if I already understood it completely.

And we moved, another major step this year. From our 2-room flat right under the roof into a spacious 4-room apartment. And though we have some issues with this flat as well, it is certainly an improvement and a good starting point to see, what to do next and how to structure our life for the forthcoming years.

Now, let’s talk about this blog. In the past 12 months I wrote 37 blogposts. 2013’s projects were my first steps in tatting, my fake-fur collar, a tablecloth-circleskirt, my 1946-handkerchief-bra,  the pencilskirt to match my polkadot-blouse, 1942-culottes, the corduroy-pinafore for my niece, my candycane-bow neck blouse and the Marlene Esser-shift dress.

Not much, but more than I guessed, I have the feeling I have done nothing this year, it flew so quickly.

So, what about the projects still lying around?

The Fall-for-Cotton-dress

Technically it is finished, but because I didn’t manage to complete the matching bolero, I want to wait until the whole ensemble is ready to be presented.
Left to do: Attach one last (!) ribbon to the bolero and gather the lower edge.

My 1940ies coat

The most recent picture, this was in march. Meanwhile it is completely assembled and lined. Unfortunately the fit is far from good and the sleeve-lining is too short.
Left to do: undo the seam on the sleeves’ hems, insert a line of bias-binding to gain at least some centimetres, hope that it will be enough; hem it; stitch the front-facing in place; attach buttons and press fasteners.

My Chiné-à-la-branche-dress

I attached it to the pink dress and handstitched the lining of the dress (it was visible on the neckline).  Unfortunately, a chemical cleaning wasn’t able to remove the stains from the skirt (but hopefully the smell from the dress), now it is hanging in my closet, but I still do not dare to wash it, fearing that the colours will bleed.
Left to do: wash, hope, maybe attach tulle to form a built-in petticoat (or simply wear a seperate one)

My English-Quilt

I am close to finishing the 3rd part out of five, but have to say that I wasn’t very ambitious to make a progress this year.
Left to do: well, assembling hexagons, and quilting in the far, far future.

The flowered-silk-dress

That’s really long ago. I bought this silk in march 2012 and promised to turn it into a dress. Left to do: Well, the pattern pieces for the lining are drawn onto the fabric, but not yet cut. Yes, that’s all 🙂

Other project not yet mentioned here:
There are still some other projects I am working on. One is a dress around 1800, made from a printed cotton fabric I bought in Lyon in 2012. As a pattern I am using an original one published in Janet Arnolds “Patterns of fashion 1”. I have come so far to construct a lining in a very stiff upholstery fabric, planning to subtitute the short stay worn under it with this. Still to be done has: completing this lining, meaning finishing the edges, adding a closure and some boning and then to cut and assemble the upper fabric.

And a cover for my mandolin, but I fear I will never finish it, so it doesn’t have to be discussed here in detail. 😉

At the moment I am experimenting with a pre-historical pattern, made from modern fabrics to test, how wearable it still is.

Mh, and there is this hilarious crocheted pullover, I am not sure I even want to complete.

Now, I won’t start to enlist all the ideas running in my mind that only wait to get started (oh, this would really put me under pressure^^)

Depending on how busy the next few days will be, maybe I will be writing another post before the year is over, but I really can’t tell.

So much for today, see you soon,