I met with one of my stitching groups yesterday afternoon. Guess what I worked on? You're right...my never-ending hexie project! English paper piecing is the only way I'd know to do this project, so there comes a time when all those little templates have to be removed. Yesterday was time to start taking out some of the templates on the middle section. I like to leave them in for awhile for a couple of reasons--it gives the piece a bit more stability while I'm dragging it everywhere and it gives me time to make sure I haven't placed one of the colored hexies in the wrong place. (With a pattern as difficult at the one on which I'm working, that is a distinct possibility.) If I remove the templates and THEN find the mistake, it is much harder to rip out the offending piece and replace it with another. Ask me how I know!
I worked for 3 hours and 37 minutes to take out this many templates.
First, all the basting threads have to be removed, then all the little cardstock pieces have to be taken out. Some people reuse a template numerous times, but mine are so beat up (because I drag it everywhere I go) that I can only use them once. That means I have to spend quite a lot of time cutting out templates too. (I print them onto cardstock on my printer and cut them out by hand. I know, I know...I'm a glutton for punishment; but I didn't think ahead when I started this project. I printed out my first batch of templates and used those BEFORE I realized how many I'd actually have to cut out. Now, I'm afraid to use preprinted ones, because I'm afraid they wouldn't exactly match these in size.)
It is a REALLY long process, but I hope the finished product will be worth the time involved. I'll be posting an updated project picture before too long.