More Hexagons!

Yesterday, I promised that I would show you how to finish a quilt made with the hexagon blocks.

If anyone was brave enough to purchase equipment and start making their own hexagon block quilt after reading yesterday’s post – that brave soul now has a quilt that looks something like this:

And by the way, if anyone WAS that brave – I’m shocked – but congratulations!Laughing 8

Now, how to get from that admittedly interesting, but difficult to work with, pointed border to something a bit more traditional? Get out your rotary cutter! Using a straight edge ruler, trim the points from each side of the quilt (top and bottom won’t have points)

After you have straighted the sides, all you have to do is add a regular border to finish the quilt top!

This quilt is quite obviously not made of several different fabrics the way the “I Spy” quilt from yesterday was. Instead, the fabric in the hexagons is a young ballerina, with a coordinating pink fabric used for the points and as the border. Here’s a closer look. As you can see from the image below on the right, the ‘star’ effect of the triangles is more obvious in this quilt because the colors are all very complimentary instead of having as much contrast as you will naturally get in the much busier “I Spy” style.

But, we aren’t done with this fabric yet! Take a look at this project, which uses all three sizes of hexagon rulers:

The jacket pattern is Butterick #5039.

This jacket took on a new look when the seamstress decided to embellish by using the Marti Michell hexagon rulers. Because there are three sizes of hexagons in the package – all were used. The bottom of the jacket has the largest hexagon or a border. The border going up and down on the front of the jacket uses the medium hexagon. And of course at the bottom of the sleeves is the smallest hexagon.

As you can see, there are lots of things that can be done with the hexagon block. The jacket shows that it makes a great border, think of what a border like this would look like going around a quilt with a large focal block in the center….

Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing

I Spy Quilt

I was asked recently to share some hints on a quilt commonly known as the “I Spy” quilt. These quilts are often made using squares or other shapes, but I like using a hexagon, and I was thrilled to find that the new Marti Michell rulers included a set of rulers perfect for this quilt – called “Hexagons and 60º Triangle”.

As I have said before – the right tool really does make all the difference. The 60º triangle ruler is designed to go with the hexagons perfectly (so I suggest making certain you store them together once they are out of the package). Depending on the size of hexagon ruler you choose, you will line your triangle up on the edge or the first or second lines on the inside of the triangle. But, I’m getting ahead of myself…

1. Select the fabric(s) you will use – if this is going to be a true “I Spy” quilt, you will want several very different images for the quilt. Then you will ask the child to find or match the horse blocks, or the two cars, or whatever.
2. Using your hexagon ruler, you will ‘fussy cut’ the image you want out of each of the fabrics. The term “fussy cut” is when you take a ruler and instead of just cutting straight across the fabric like in strip quilting, you move the ruler around on your fabric until you have centered a design on your fabric in the center of your ruler. As an example in this picture we have decided to center the horses in the center. (Seam allowance is included in the ruler proportions, see the dotted line on the ruler.)

For this quilt, I used the largest of the hexagons. It gives me more flexibility for centering the images I want on each block, and will be more fun for the child to use when the quilt is completed.
3. The next step is to use the triangle ruler to cut two blue corners to sew on your hexagon. Since this is the large hexagon you would use the 3” or largest triangle. For each hexagon you will need two triangles. The first triangle is sewn to the upper left hand corner, then you sew the next triangle to the opposite corner.



4. After you have sewn the two triangles onto all of your blocks, you will begin to assemble the blocks together.


5. As you are sewing the blocks together, you will create strips, and those strips will be sewn together. (More on how to finish this quilt type in tomorrow’s post).

As the strips are sewn together, you will see that a star effect is being created throughout the quilt top. Can you see the six-pointed star centered in this picture?

And below are pictures of the finished quilt – click on them for a closer view.


Be sure to check back tomorrow – I’ll show you how to finish quilts of this type!
Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing