Monday, November 30, 2015

19th Hexie Swap--Sign Up Now!

Time to sign up for our 19th swap!

Sign up by December 19th by emailing me your name, address, phone, email address and themes to 


*Stashbusters (see guidelines below)
*Small Floral Prints (see guidelines below)

*TRUE Black & White/White & Black prints (see guidelines below)


In collaboration with the great ladies at (see their contact information at the end of this post), we will offer you the opportunity to join our 19th swap with other quilters and save 20% not only on your precut shapes of English paper pieces, but for all other merchandise on their website! Please note this discount doesn’t include the shipping charges. They offer an extensive collection of hexagon books to spark your interest and I especially recommend “Piecing It All Together” and “English Paper Piecing”.

The code number will be emailed to you once you officially sign up at with your full real name, address and phone number and the swap(s) themes you be joining in. Paperpieces will do their best to get your shipment out ASAP so you will have plenty of time to work on your sets! I will do my best not to send you back any duplicates.

Below you will find what seems like a copy of “War and Peace”, but I run my swaps with open communication so there are no surprises and complete consistency from all swappers. Follow the guidelines? Great! Don’t follow the guidelines? Your swap will be returned. I need to be fair to all swappers who play. And I know what you are thinking and yes, I am a type A personality!
We will be swapping 1”hexagons (Paperpieces item # HEX100). Please note that these measure 1” on each side. Each “set” will be of six of the same fabric with the papers left inside. This will allow you to make the outside edges of a flower and use your own center fabric to bring consistency to your finished project. Please do not use any glue to hold down the paper piece on the fabric. You will be sewing through the paper and be sure to check the blog for the details. See the tutorial on how to make hexies for this swap on the blog under favorites.

Check out the right side of the hexie blog for photos of suitable fabrics for the above themes. Remember, you can only send in a maximum of ten sets (60 hexies) of the same print. And no, you cannot duplicate or use the same fabric for another theme (such a sending in a red and white print and also including it into the Stashbusters theme).

Here are our three themes:

>Stashbusters: Use the guideline
s below for selecting fabrics and check out the blog at

>TRUE Black & White/White & Black prints: Just that—only black and white! No grey, ecru, off white, cream or any other color allowed! You might find it helpful to put your questionable white prints over a piece of computer paper to determine a clean white color. For more details, check the blog at  

 >Small Floral Prints: “Small” is the keyword here. Looking for florals with little or no open background to scale with the 1” hexie. Save those larger florals for other projects! See the blog for suitable small florals at

*PLEASE READ THE GUIDELINES CAREFULLY BEFORE COMMITTING TO THE SWAP OR CUTTING YOUR FABRICS. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, PLEASE ASK!* As always, if you send in hexies using fabrics not allowed in the swap, they will be returned.

*Use only 100% cotton fabric.

*NO solids (unless noted in swap guidelines), homespun, glitter, batiks, novelty prints—this includes holiday prints (unless noted in swap guidelines) and children prints, flannels, thin or plastic-feeling fabrics. Please do not send in any WOW (white on white), COC (cream on cream), etc. They really don’t make a colorful flower. Just remember we want each flower to stand out--not become a wallflower in your finished project!

*NO large prints—be sure your fabrics selected are to the 1” hexagon scale! Leave your open background and large prints for other projects—use smaller prints that fill in your hexie! If you have a question on a fabric, please do not hesitate to contact me at PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, ALSO PLACE A 1” HEXAGON PAPER ON THE QUESTIONABLE PRINT SO I CAN SEE THE SCALE.

*Be sure when cutting directional fabrics they do not end up looking off-bias or wonky once the hexagon flowers is put together.

*Be sure to REMOVE your selvedges (and pin marks) BEFORE cutting your fabrics. Check fabric for flaws, such as runs or stains. Since the sets will be stacked and tacked by a thread, I will not be able to double check your work. Remember the golden rule of swapping—do not send anything in that you wouldn’t want to receive in return.

*PLEASE SHIP IN PLENTY OF TIME AS ANY LATE PACKAGES WILL BE RETURNED BACK TO YOU UNSWAPPED AT YOUR EXPENSE!* I will be sending out a “gentle reminder” notice two weeks before the swap is due. THIS WILL BE strictly INFORCED! If shipping parcel post, plan on two week shipping time. For international shipments, please plan on at least three weeks to arrive in time to swap out.

While I advocate using Paperpieces papers (#HEX100), you can also take lightweight card stock and cut your own. You cannot use regular computer paper or cardboard for this swap as they are subsequently too light and too heavy ensure a sharp point when turning corners and will be returned! If you do use your own inserts, be sure they are consistent while cutting. I will be doing a spot check to be sure they are not too small or too large and that once you sew down the corners they are not pulling up the tips. Check out the blog for a tutorial as to how we would like the hexies made. Please do not use any glue or adhesive to hold down the hexie paper to the fabric. Please use a straight stitch, not a whip stitch for easy paper removal.

Your swap guidelines on how to make of the hexagons will be posted on the blog. Please DRY press your hexagons when finished. Be careful NOT to use steam if using printed inserts as the dyes may come off on the fabrics! Yes, we will be sewing through the paper, but as you see in the tutorial, it will be easy to remove the papers for reuse once you sew your hexagons together and remove the basting stitch.

As mentioned before, each set will be six-1” finished hexagons of the SAME print with a knotted basting stitched (PLEASE USE THE SMALLEST NEEDLE POSSIBLE TO AVOID HOLES!) down the middle and back up to the top to hold each set together (with papers left inside each piece). You can only send in 10 sets of the SAME print! (Total of 60 hexagons of the SAME print) to ensure a nice variety of prints. I found cutting 2 ½”strips of fabric and sub cutting them into 2 ½” squares work PERFECT for this project.

NOTE: I know life sometimes throws you curve balls, but it has happened that people get excited and want to play, only to wait two months later when the swap is due in a day or so to say they didn't have time. By that time you should have already been ready to mail the package. That leaves me hanging to replace your swap with my stash and totally unfair IF you know you cannot make the deadline to begin with. I give you ample notice so you have plenty of time to make an informed decision. Also, another player may liked to play in your place. Be honest with me up front, or a repeat offender might not be able to play in the future The success of this swap depends on your ability follow through your commitment to our group of players. Thank you for your understanding!

By all of us being honest and accountable, I'm sure we will have a great 2016 swapping year! I really do enjoy hostessing and want to continue to enjoy it, so by coming up front with any issues is not really a complaint, but a way to correct it so my frustration level (and blood pressure!) stays at an even keel. Probably the MOST important thing I can say about a successful swap is the high level of communication between all parties. Without that, we are setting ourselves up for failure. Be prepared for me to contact you several times during the swap for an update on your progress and invite pictures of your hexies to share with other swappers!

**I’m allergic to pet dander and scents, so please do what you can to control the fur. Some packages come in with so much pet hair that they look like they need to be brushed! For health reasons, I cannot handle them and they will be returned untouched at YOUR expense. My health depends on it and I thank you in advance for your understanding.

PACKING YOUR SHIPMENT-We found that using dollar store sandwich Ziploc bags package nine sets nicely and make it easier to swap out. If you “burp”the air out of the baggies before you seal them they pretty much stay in place during shipping. Also, please ID each baggie with your name and state so that the other swappers can know where their hexies come from! Some swappers like to use those address labels they get in the mail. You can put all your separated themes in a larger Ziploc bag with your COF board name (if you have one!), real name and address, phone number and number of sets in the main bag AND a separate piece of paper with your mailing address in case the package is damaged in shipment so the post office can still return it to you.
>>Please see packaging guidelines on the blog post>>

POSTAGE or POSTAGE money must be included in your package. Be sure to add a stamp or two to your stamped envelopes if not going priority mail flat rate boxes. They also seem to weigh more returning than coming in! If you are a frequent swapper, you can also send in $20 or so and I can keep it on “account” and deduct your postage from it. This was worked nicely with some swappers in the past and that way you don’t have to worry about sending in money each time. Once the swap is complete, I will PM you your postage balance on account for your records. If you wish your extra postage money returned, I can certainly do that also (minus the stamp money for return postage).

If you wish to include a self-addressed mailer for the return trip back to you, remember NO metered postage or ACP postage on the return mailer. Stamps only. Our post office will not allow more than a 13 oz. pre-stamped mailer in any mailboxes nor can mail carriers accept them (since 9/11 our East coast mail guidelines have been modified). While your local p.o. may say it is okay to use metered or ACP postage, our p.o. will NOT accept anything that has been pre-dated. I’m just trying to make it as easy as possible for all concerned. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask!

For Priority mail packages, I have plenty of mailing envelopes and boxes here so there is no need to send a new one. I do, however, try to recycle the boxes if possible. IF YOU ARE SENDING YOUR SWAP IN A MANILLA ENVELOPE OR PADDED MAILER, YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE TO SEND IN A RETURN ENVELOPE. Remember, I am not responsible for the packages once they are mailed back to you.

>>NOTE: Some of your local post offices allow you to pack a flat rate envelope or legal size envelope to the bulging point, but mine won’t accept them as they are intended for FLAT items only. So, if you can get away with it on your end-fine-just be aware they may not be returned the same way.

Paper Pieces:

(Use the search box to find the HEX100)


Call toll free in the US: 1-800-337-1537

Hexagon Swap blog:





Saturday, November 21, 2015

Candy Cane Kiss Cookies by Polish The Stars


1 1/2 cups Powdered Sugar

1 1/4 cups Unsalted Butter, softened

1 teaspoon Peppermint Extract (optional)

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1 Large Egg

3 cups All-Purpose Flour

1 teaspoon Baking Powder

1/2 teaspoon Salt

1/2 cup Hershey's Candy Cane Kisses (about 18), finely chopped

Granulated Sugar

36 unwrapped Candy Cane Kisses

Preheat oven to 350F.  In a large bowl, mix powdered sugar, butter, extracts and egg.  Beat at medium speed 2-3 minutes or until creamy.  In a small bowl, blend flour, baking powder and salt.  Gradually add to creamed mixture and beat 1-2 minutes until well blended.  Stir in chopped kisses.

Use a cookie scoop to shape dough into 3/4-inch balls and roll in granulated sugar.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet and bake about 10 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned.  Let sit for a minute then press a candy cane kiss in the center of each cookie*.  Move cookies to a cool cookie sheet and place in the freezer immediately so that the Kisses will set quickly and keep their shape**.

Store in an air-tight container at room temperature for up to a week.

Makes 3 Dozen Cookies.

*The original recipe said to put the Kisses on the cookie immediately and then place in the freezer.  I did this but the Kisses still melted as you can see in the photos (they actually melted even more than this so I had to snap the pictures quickly).  So I would suggest letting the cookies set a minute before putting the Kisses on.  Just don't let the cookies cool too much or the Kisses won't want to stay on.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

PatV82 Hexie Projects

Pat is our first swapper to submit photos of her projects. Thanks, Pat!

This was the first project I did with "our" hexies.  The tote bag itself is canvas, I lined the upper inside with a sash of hexies, both sides of the canvas have a hexie flower on it (sewn down onto the canvas).

 I also did a checkbook cover (photo #3) and a little phone purse (which I misplaced in my move last year).  So these 3 photos are for 1 project.  

 I used black & white hexies to make 2 very large mugrugs/mats.  The first one went to JLu with the Anything Goes mugrug swap in January 2015.  The second one went to my Secret Sister (KBlue)  as part of the 2015 Secret Sister Swap.  I also gave her all the rest of my black & white hexies to start a project. What is harder to see (thank goodness) is my finishing.  I put temtex on the inside to make it stiff, so I ended up just doing a zigzag stitch around the outsides.   

Patchworkpossee Hexagon Wreath Tutorial

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

2016 Past Hexie Swap Photo Contest

Calling all hexie swappers! We want to see your latest projects using hexies from the past 18 swaps!

You can send me one photo each of up to six WIPS (works in progress) or completed projects. Please give me a bit of background about the project to add a bit of interest to your photo. Just remember that all photos must be emailed to me in .JPEG format. 

This event will start January 1, 2016 and end on June 1, 2016. You will get one ticket for each photo sent and the winner will be drawn on June 2, 2016.

>> You must sign up by midnight ET December 31, 2015 to play>>

 You can sign up by sending me your name, address, phone and email address (and COF board name if you have one) to

Oh, you ask, what is the prize? How about a $50.00 gift certificate from Paper Pieces? Now that’s awesome! 

If you have any questions on this contest, please email me at the above address. We hope to have lots of previous players show us what their hexie projects!

19th Hexie Poll-Vote Now!

Time to select our themes for the 19th Hexie Swap! The due date is late enough so that you don't have to worry about making hexies during the holidays (unless you want to!).

Email me your top THREE choices to The poll will stay up until November 28, 2015; the official sign ups begin immediately and ends on December 19, 2015. In order to give you PLENTY of time, the swap is due in my hand no later than February 6, 2016.

Guidelines would be the same as the previous swaps, but always feel free to contact me if you have any questions on fabrics. You can check out the blog at for past swap guidelines. We are looking for small prints to make the most of our hexie quilts.

The terrific gals at Paperpieces have been kind enough to extend their 20% discount for all merchandise purchased (shipping not included in the discount). Visit their website at

Vote for: (running total of votes will be listed to the right of the theme on the hexie blog):

>>Note: We have two new themes for those of you who need tonal fillers between your flowers—Light and Dark Neutrals.

*Stashbusters prints (like in the 18 past swaps)

*Lt. Neutrals

*Dark Neutrals

*TRUE 1930's repros-no children’s novelties

*TRUE 1930’s repros-only children’s novelties

*TRUE Civil War repros

*Batiks (must prewash your fabrics for this theme, please)

*TOT (tone on tone)

*TRUE black and white prints

*Spring colors (pastel colors)

*Summer colors (bright colors of summer flowers)

*Fall colors (deep reds, maroon, dark oranges, golds, browns, etc.)

*Winter colors (white and blues)

*TRUE red, white and blue prints

*BRIGHT prints

*Small floral prints

*Children's novelty prints

*Novelty prints-not children’s


*Neutrals (black, cream or white)

*TRUE red and white prints

*TRUE blue and white prints

*Shades of blue

*Shades of pink

*Shades of green

*Shades of purple

*Small print polka dots

*Christmas prints