Thursday, October 13, 2011

It's A Hen Party!!


Hi, my name is Deonn , and I think I have QUILT FEVER!  I was going to say "I am a QUILTAHOLIC" but that would involve
some kind of 12-step program...

The best cure, of course, is quilting with friends! I am excited (thrilled) to share some quilty/crafty love on my very first guest post today for Madame Samm at

I have a thing for chickens. 
I chickens. They make me smile. 

It began with some "Easter Egg" chickens (Bantams) I had when I was a kid.  They were my pets, and laid little blue and green eggs (oh, so cute!)

I collect chicken pitchers = kitchen chickens (say that fast three times) haha...!  (WARNING: Use for thin liquids like cream or syrup. Or decoration. Do NOT pour lumpy gravy from a small chicken pitcher...  eeeewww.  Ask me how I know this.)

And a few years back, my Grandpa referred to a family girl gathering as a "Hen Party", so my seven sisters and I adopted the name for our annual get-together.  We all look forward to leaving husbands/kids at home to go off and cackle together for a few days each year. 

I also  chickens in quilts.

One of my first quilts stemmed from a chicken block exchange, 
where I was to supply "country red" chickens in the trade.  
I showed up with all BRIGHT RED chickens - OOPS!  So I kept those, made my own bright red chicken quilt (see above ↑) and remade more for the exchange.  Hey!  it was great!  I got two quilts out of it!  But, I didn't really love applique' (yet).  

So... I tried a bunch of pieced patterns for chickens... didn't love those either.

Then I learned a simple stitch & flip technique: 

(small square, right sides together on the corner of a larger square/rectangle; stitch from point to point; trim the seam, press toward the corner to make a beak or a comb or feet.)

It made me smile.  Maybe they'll give you a smile, too!



My goal was to make a quilt for each of my sisters...

But... there are a lot of them (seven)!  Instead, I made quilted bags with one little Hen Party Chick.  Lame, I know.

Now my goal is to teach the younger ones to sew, (← fun times) 
then they can make their own! 

Lately I noticed that owls were becoming popular, (I know, it took me awhile...) so I made a few adaptations and came up with a "Hoo-ville Chick" .... Hmmm.

(Made a pink one and called it a "Hooter" - then donated it for a
Susan G. Komen breast cancer research fundraiser. I that one)

And, coming up on Hallowe'en around these parts, wonder what a bat would look like... Hmmm.  Yeah, probably not.

Each of my triplet daughters made a baby chick 
in her favorite color.

I really love those little chicks. OK, I love the quilt too.
What should we call it?  Twerps? Tweets? Chirps? Cheeps? Peeps? ...Triplet Chicklets? (Ha - another fun tongue twister!)
Back to the point.  I chickens. 
And, I think you really need a basketful of them
in your sewing room!  So, let's have a Hen Party!!

Supply List:
  * Two 3-1/2” to 5” squares fabric for chick body (cotton, upholstery fabric, pre-quilted fabric, pieced squares, etc.) 

  * Two or Three 3" squares for tail (same or coordinating fabric)
  * Two or Three red 1-1/4” squares for comb
  * One yellow/gold 1-1/4” square for beak

  *  About 1/2 cup rice, ground walnut shells, silica sand, or use polyester fiberfill for stuffing (your choice)

PREPARE comb, beak and tail pieces.
FOLD each square in half to form a triangle.  PRESS.  
FOLD in half again and PRESS again.

LAY OUT one of the chick body squares right side up, and ARRANGE beak and comb pieces as ↓ diagrammed.

Place folded sides of the comb toward the corner, nestle/overlap the comb pieces.  Pin, Stitch or GLUE-baste to secure beak and comb in place.  (I Jillily's Appli-glue)
PLACE the other square right sides together over 
the comb and beak. 

Pin in place, then STITCH along the lines indicated, 
using 1/4” seam allowances.

 Start in the corner opposite the beak and comb.  
Leave an opening at the bottom through which you will be able to turn the chicken right-side out.  Leave the last side OPEN.

LAY OUT tail pieces as you'd like.
 PIN- or GLUE-baste pieces together. 

SANDWICH your tail piece in the remaining open seam
 of the chicken:

Align the top and bottom seams and center the tail.

This will form the pyramid shape of the chicken. 

PIN, then STITCH across that seam. 

TURN your chicken right side out through the opening (hatch your chick).  STUFF with your choice of filling (rice, silica sand, 
ground walnut shells, polyester fiberfill, etc.)

WHIP-STITCH the opening closed. 

Sew on some little beads or poke a couple of pins 
in the right spot for eyes.

This one's for you, Madame Samm!!  ↑

Have fun, make one or make a ton!

Happy Sewing!

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