Sunday, June 25, 2017

Hen and Chicks

Said the first little chicken,
With a strange little squirm,
"I wish I could find
A fat little worm."

Said the next little chicken,
With an odd little shrug:
"I wish I could find
A fat little bug."

Said a third little chicken,
With a small sigh of grief,
"I wish I could find
A green little leaf!"

Said the fourth little chicken,
With a faint little moan,
"I wish I could find
A wee gravel stone."

"Now, see here!" said the mother,
From the green garden patch,
"If you want any breakfast,
Just come here and scratch!" 

My daughter Diane has a most exciting WIP; she is expecting a baby girl in October. Upon hearing the news, I wanted to plan and make the best and most adorable baby quilt. After considering Diane's favorite color (red) and a favorite pet (chickens) I decided on a pattern featuring hens and chicks, found here at  Sew Fresh Quilts. Lorna, the pattern designer, shows several color ideas that are modern and cheerful. I opted for more realistic colors and used some super fun Moda samples I have. I like the technique that Lorna uses, pieced shapes and triangles sewn on the diagonal and trimmed. Easy and precise.

The first two sets of hens and chicks, life size.
I decided on a soft grey background for a modern look and to soften the colors. I had fun looking at different hens and chicks, and choosing fabrics that gave variety and fanciness seen in a flock of chickens.  Here are the blocks, awaiting a few chick heads and rooster legs.

Fancy wings and a big rooster in the center.

The hen on the bottom left has eggs instead of chicks, and the fabric is sparkly. Diane and I talked about a 3-dimensional rooster tail for textural interest. I played around and came up with prairie points. Durable, and fun.

I set my reading glasses under the points to show the 3-D effect.

Yes, a green rooster. His comb and wattle are black. The tail and wattle were my designs.

I set a goal to finish this quilt in time for the Council Quilt Show which has the theme this year, "Feathered Friends." It was good to have a goal, the quilt is finished way ahead of the baby's birth. I used other ideas from Lorna of Sew Fresh Quilts, wavy line quilting, and a flanged binding. The binding is attached exclusively by machine. Here is the quilt at the quilt show:

Ready to welcome baby.
The back of the quilt is a fabric line named, "Babes in Farmland" by Timeless Treasures. I bought 5 yards. 5 yards. Keep in mind, the baby quilt is 40" x 50." That is how I buy fabric.

cute details.

 I also made a challenge block with the same theme, "Feathered Friends," and blue green fabric as the challenge focus fabric. My block is entitled, "Gertrude McFuzz," after the Dr. Seuss book about the little bird with a plain tail, who wanted a fancy tail and ate pill berries until her tail grew too big for her to fly. I used a paper pieced pattern called Teeny Tiny Feather and a bird block from Sophie Junction. The bird pattern is found on her blog. And, the pill berry bush is my improv from a Gwen Marston class.

A bird after my own heart, eating pill berries to make herself feel better. 
How is your summer shaping up?


  1. Looooove the cute hen and chicks! Many fond memories reading that wonderful book over and over and over. ☺️ Can't wait to see that baby quilt in person! ❤️ Also love the Gertrude McFuzz block and all the details!

    1. Thanks, Ainsley. I will acquire another copy of the book to go with the quilt. I, too, have lots of fond memories of reading that book with special sounds to little girls. I can't wait to wrap our new baby girl in that quilt.

  2. Be it a bird or chickens, they are very cute!!!

  3. Your chickens, chicks and eggs are all super cute. But that rooster is fabulous!!! I love how you have taken this pattern and made it to suit your vision. Congratulations on the wonderful news of your "soon to be" grandchild!

    1. Thank you, Lorna. I was awaiting your comments. I used the hen tutorial and purchased the chick pattern, which was so fun and addictive to make that I can hardly wait to make a doll quilt with the chicks. squeee... I know I enjoy the matching doll items at least as much as the grands do. I wish I had used your pattern to place the chicks, I worried about the spacing on my quilt and had to tell myself STOP. I was pleased with the rooster tail, and have enjoyed previous baby quilts with prairie points for play, but this one was my favorite. Now I am super excited to make your forest friends for our bed, with critters from both 1 and 2. I hope to meet you someday so I can hug you for all of the inspiration you have given me on my quilting journey.

  4. What fun this quilt is. I like your added touches.I think the baby will like the prairie points.

    1. Thanks, Lisa, I had such fun making this quilt, and dreaming of a new baby wrapped up in it.

  5. Your chickens are adorable! I love the green rooster. And I absolutely ADORE your birdie challenge block.

  6. Thanks Rebecca. would you mind driving to Council to vote for it? lol

  7. Hi Jane,
    What a cute little poem to start your post! AND that backing fabric - could it possibly be any more PERFECT??? I am really - for the best and most adorable baby quilt. I might have to disagree slightly - only because we had to make the most adorable and bestest baby quilt for our niece featuring gray and an elephant. But I will concede that this is the BEST chicken baby quilt I have ever seen. HAHA ~smile~ Roseanne (and I hope you know I am just kidding - really - even though you don't know me)

  8. Roseanne! I think we are kindred spirits,for certain! Thank you for your kind words and gushing praise. My first choice for a baby quilt was elephants and baby elephants, but I opted for the chickens. I am off to see if I can find your photos of the elephant quilt you made. I hope to connect more with you, I can tell I like your style.

    1. Hi Jane,
      That is so sweet of you to say. I'll follow you (not stalk!) so I can keep up on all the things that get made for this new grandbaby. This great-aunt to be has to keep up, you know. ~smile~ Roseanne

  9. What a fun, fun quilt!! I like your little touches with the prairie points for 3-D (I have to remember that idea for baby quilts--or fidget quilts), the wattle and the eggs, but I bet Lorna is thrilled that you followed her lead on so many parts--the wavy quilting!! and the flanged binding. The backing is hilarious, and I can see why you'd want to buy 5 yards! That's going to be one lucky grandbaby having a gramma like you! (congrats!)