When I started to quilt I didn't have a sewing machine. As a matter of fact I didn't LIKE sewing machines! LoL I can thank a teacher in school for that... I just couldn't get things right and I supposed she got tired of me. As a result of her impatience with a student, I never dreamed I would use one of those monsters that always made a mess of what I was sewing. Little did I know that quilting is really just a straight line. LoL
But it was hand quilting... I had no idea it was called English paper piercing. My mother tried to make a quilt once and she did it using small pieces of papers. So that was what I did too. Since I normally are clueless about all the tools and helpful things you can buy, I just cut shapes out of cereal boxes. When I finally years later stepped in to a quilt-shop I did buy some of the pre-made but I must admit I like my cereal-shapes better! LoL I use them over and over and just love the fact they make me be able to sew shapes I can't on a machine.
Here are some of my shapes and one unfinished little pillow.
I sew the fabric to the paper and then I sew the shapes together with small stitches at the edge.
Here is one I made in that early beginning.
It is a bit funny to look at this more than 20 years later. I haven't changed in the way I only use a few different fabrics. I normally use more solid colours than fabrics with a pattern. The reason is simply that I am very unsure of what goes with what! LoL I do love those quilts that are having many different printed fabrics, but when I lay out a lot I just convince myself they don't go together.
It is so much easier with solid colours, here is one where I used 7 different.
One quilt artist I admire is Jinny Beyer. She has no limit in how many colours she is using and she is letting us use some of her patterns for free. Here is the link, do pop around there and have a look.
I made this using one of the patterns:
I had to make all the shapes and they very small! But it was fun to use so many colours.
In this next one I used fabrics from the same serie. Today I would use another border, but you can always find things you would like to change.
Sometimes people ask me why I sew by hand. There are 3 reasons, I need something to do when watching TV, it is fun to sew shapes I haven't learnt to sew on the machine and it is very satisfying to know I made everything by hand! If you have never done it, you should try just a small project. I even made a small handbag just to see if I could!