There are some simply wonderful quilting ideas out there in this modern world of patchwork and quilting. However I am a BIG fan of the original patchwork quilt…. Scraps and not over planned! Also the simple shapes that I always think of in vintage or retro styles of quilting, squares and hexagons. My very first bit of patchwork was using a hexagon, I’m not at all sure where it went (I am guessing I was about 10 years old and the fabric pretty awful!) most likely thrown out into a jumble sale (remember those!) as for the quilt, it was a bit like this, completely random and a weird selection of colour.
My next hexagon project (40 years later) is quite different! I decided I wanted it to look like it had been around for years, maybe a quilt my grandma had made and bequeathed to me. Something from the 1930’s – 40’s?
So with her in mind I started planning. One of the things I do remember from my grandma’s kitchen was, what I thought at the time, very old fashioned was the colour scheme. She had green and cream enamel storage tins, it was that green so fashionable in crockery, and kitchen cabinets door fronts… I think I found almost the same green in the pindot! These are the lovely “vintage prints” I chose, some of which I wasn’t particularly fond of, but the design and colour perfect. My next dilemma was the hexagon papers. I remembered that I had learned how to make a hexagon shape at school using a compass, but found a much, much, much better way to sort out this bit of the planning… buy them already perfectly measured and cut out!
Jackie Wills is the answer to your prayers! She has an online shop with all sorts of sizes of popular hexagon sizes, plus other shapes. Her site is full of brilliant ideas, tips and information about hexagons, paper piecing, quilt projects. And her fantastic waistcoats. I bought my hexagon papers from her shop, they arrived in the post the very next day. Well done, Jackie, perfect service! Back to the papers. Oh, I can’t tell you what an absolute joy it is to have them all cut out perfectly. Jackie has taken that burden from you so you can get stuck into the part of your hexagon patchwork that you really want to do, the fabric and quilt design. Have a read through Jackie’s advice on how to use the papers. I have decided on how I apply my fabric, tips from Jackie:-
Get in touch with Jackie on :-
Method 1. If you are new to hexagon paper quilting you might think this is the way to cut fabric and tack on the papers. It’s not wrong, just time consuming and fiddly.
Cut out your fabric hexagons larger all the way around your hexagon papers using the larger template. I would say 1/4 inch a bit skimpy, 1/2 inch better – allows a bit of movement.
Then stitch fabric “around” hexagon papers like this, you will need lots of stitches to hold the paper hexagon in place, and they will work just fine. I have done this method too!
However I find this is way too tedious for me and too time consuming to cut all those fabric hexagons. This is similar to Jackie’s advice too!
Method 2… the method I use and prefer.
Cut fabric into squares – you don’t really need to measure anything as long as you leave a large enough lapover.
Stitch and fold fabric around the hexagon paper.
You will find you will need less stitches which will save time and all that fiddling to keep hexagon paper in the right position.
Then snip off the excess fabric like this to reduce the bulk of fabric on the underside.
If you are using quite a small hexagon paper size I wouldn’t bother to snip any off excess fabric.
When you have a nice little heap of fabric covered hexagons you can get cracking with the design. Heaps to chose from:-
Small florette using a centre colour with the same around , or centre colour and similar colourway around creating a slightly different look.
Add more and more….
In a diamond…
with a diamond insert…
The above colour scheme quilt is a working progress, I have made up heaps of the hexagons, now sitting in the evening doing the best bit in my opinion, stitching them together! I will let you know and share with you once I have finished this quilt!
Best wishes, Jay xx
Little snippet for you from Snoo “The Penguin is the only bird who can swim but can’t fly”