Steffi at Steffi’s Candy Quilts just mentioned on her blog that she has discovered a better way of sewing hexagons which she is going to reveal in her next post. I thought I would show a little bit of my process so we could compare. We both use a running stitch method (as opposed to English paper piecing), but I am interested to see what order she uses.
My process is pretty basic. I usually draw my patterns on grid paper first. A hexagonal grid paper pdf generator is available here from Incompetech– it’s wonderful and can be customized to just about any size (they also have all sorts of other grid generators). I design my pattern and once I am happy with it, I draw a new one where I outline and separate blocks (below is the pattern for the GFG doll quilt). I try to make most blocks the same, but I need to include each variation (sides, top, alternate rows, etc.). To the left I have drawn the most common block and outlined the way I put it together (in horizontal strips). I usually like to stitch the path hexes at the same time I’m sewing the flowers (if I have decided on a setting, which is not always the case).
I noticed that Steffi and I also press differently — her method is more complex (a technique I usually reserve for 6 or more intersections) and very good for removing bulk. Because vintage fabrics are a bit thinner than contemporary fabrics, this has not seemed to be a problem for me, but I’m going to try her method anyway.
Last, I want to show you the darling “sewing companion” that Steffi made for me. It holds a pretty scissors that she purchased in the Netherlands, and it’s going to be so nice to carry in my purse instead of the plastic baggies I have been using for years.