Thursday, July 7, 2011
Civil War Hexagons
I've had a busy few days again, and now have something to show for it!! After talking, and thinking about machine pieced hexagons for ever so long, I finally decided I was going to 'master' this little exercise. I know I'm not the first to do this, but I just don't have any patterns or anything concrete to work from. I found a few photographs online, but in the end, used the grey matter, and forged on regardless. Pictured above is the finished article. Some of you may recognize the lovely fabrics in the patchwork. These are the civil war prints I won a few months ago. They came via a give-away from Frances I have been waiting for an opportunity to use them. I will try to share my method in the following paragraphs.
The first part of the exercise was cutting strips 1½" in width. I had drawn a 2" hexagon on paper, then simply cut it in half from one point to the opposite. It was then taped to my 60° ruler which gave me a good view of how to cut my pieces. I then 'planned' my design. The next step was to carefully stack each piece from each row, and stitch them together to form pieced strips. These were eventually all stitched to form the patchwork ground. It was then ready to be appliqued and quilted. For the body of the bag I used some old chambray I had in the cupboard. The lining was a better piece of chambray. I added some pockets for magazines and projects in progress. I saw a bag similar to this in a Quilters' Companion magazine I purchased recently - it was submitted by Brigitte Giblin - http://www.brigittegiblinquilts.com/. My shapes are a little different, and I had to improvise on the sizing to accommodate the difference. I also added some fusible pelmet vilene to the chambray lining, so that the bag has sufficient body to stand up on it's own. It does just that!! Thankfully, I also had in my cupboard a set of wooden handles that seem to go reasonably well. I am so totally over the moon with this way of piecing hexagons. It's not for those who dislike machine piecing [and loads of pressing], but I found it interesting, and will work on a bigger hexagon for my next project. I think I'd like to apply the technique to a scrap quilt [of sorts].
I have also included a photograph showing the inside of the bag, complete with the makings for a scarf. I still have 25 grams of the baby camel hair, and hope I can knit a thin, openwork scarf from this amount. If I use larger needles and a loose pattern, I may just scrape through.
I do hope this project interests some readers. It was fun to do, and it gave me an opportunity to do some machine stitching again - something I really haven't done since the Christmas napery sewing. I finally had my machines serviced and they are both quite happy.
Thank you to those who have left a comment on the give-away. I shall draw it in a few days. I do have some emails from those who were unable to leave comments, so never fear, your names will not be forgotten.