Please don't think I'm a purist who refuses to make quilts by machine. That's not the case at all. But I've chosen to make this project by hand because I find it soothes my spirit. If things go wrong in my little world, I can sit down and stitch on my quilt for awhile and then I'm fine. Calm. As Alice once said, "Go to your happy place." Stitching on this quilt is my happy place.
I don't know how most people make a Grandmother's garden quilt, but I start with fabric strips 3 inches wide; I cut them into squares, and then I cut the corners off a bit. What I'm left with is a piece of fabric that is loosely a hexagon shape. I saturate the dickens out of the squares with starch and then I steam press each one around a cardboard template that's exactly the right size.
Sometimes I spend a little time just making hexagons to keep my sewing basket well stocked. Then later on I'll take one of this color, six of that color, and twelve of that color over there. I stack them and tack them straight down the center to keep them all together until I'm ready to make the "flowers". In the photo below, you can see a stack that's ready to go, a couple of single hexagons, a couple of the cardboard templates and my faithful spray starch.
When I want a little quiet time, I pick up a stack and stitch them together. Since I used the templates to make them the correct size and shape, the putting-it-together part is real easy. And since I've already chosen the colors (1, 6 and 12) when I made the stack, it's a complete no-brainer to make a flower like this.
When I get enough "flowers" I add them to the quilt top. Some of the colors in this particular quilt are pretty bright -- it reminds me of Mom and how she LUV'd bright, cheerful colors in her quilts.
Haven't a clue when I'll finish this project, but in this case, it's DEFINITELY the journey that's most important, not the destination.