Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Tutorial: Quilt-As-You-Go Hexie Coasters!

Y'all ready for this? I've got a new tutorial for you... may I present the Quilt-As-You-Go Hexie Coasters!

Woot! I actually made this coaster and took all of the pictures for this post about two months ago... I think I may have procrastinated in the posting a little bit *blush*. But I think it turned out pretty darned cute, don't you? Okay, now who wants to get started?! Let's go!!


For Hexies:
9 fabric squares measuring 2.5x2.5" each
9 one-inch hexagon templates*
Hand sewing needle
Hand sewing thread

For Coasters:
5x5" piece of muslin or scrap fabric for foundation**
5x5" piece of thin batting
5x5" piece of fabric for backing
Scrap of fabric 1.25x22" for binding

* You can make your own hexagon graph paper here (just be sure to select the 1 inch option and measure one side to be sure after you've printed them out) or order some pre-made templates from here. I've done both.
**This piece of fabric is merely used as a foundation for the hexagons and will not be seen, so go ahead and use something truly ugly!!

Now, I'm going to start off by showing you the method that I use to make hexies. This method works especially well for this type of project, but if you make your hexies a different way - go for it! You may need to be a little more careful when you get to the quilt-as-you-go portion of this tutorial, but I think it'll still work out. If you already know how to make hexies, just skip this portion of the tutorial, but make sure that you have 9 completed hexies before moving on to the next portion.

English Paper-Piecing Directions:

Pin one hexagon template to one 2.5x2.5" fabric square and trim the fabric down, leaving 1/4" around all sides of the hexagon template. Have a length of thread in your needle, knotted, and ready to go!

Fold one edge of the fabric down so that it is snug against the edge of the template.

Fold the adjoining edge down so that it too is snug against the template and so that the fabric overlaps at the corner.

Run your needle and thread through the corner of the fabric, being careful not to pick up any of the paper template in the process. Pull the thread all the way through so that the knot if snug to the fabric.

Run your needle and thread through the corner once more to secure it in place. Pull all of the way though.

Fold down the next corner just as did before and bring your needle across. Repeat the above steps to secure the corner. Pull the thread taut, but not so tightly that the template curls - this will ensure that the edges of the fabric all stay in place.

Repeat the above steps all of the way around the hexagon. At the last corner run your needle through a couple of times as above and secure with a knot. Cut your thread.

And there you have a completed hexie! Repeat the steps above until you have 9 completed hexagons for your coaster.

Quilt-As-You-Go Coaster Directions:

Draw a light line in pencil 1/4" away from the edge all around your muslin foundation piece. Layer your muslin, batting, and backing as shown ensuring that the backing is right side down and that the pencil markings on the muslin are facing up.

Pop the templates out of all of your hexagons. If you used the method that I described above to make your hexagons than they will hold their shape when the templates are removed. If you used another method they may not hold their shape so well and should be handled with care.

Begin by placing one hexagon in the top, right corner so that it's corners and top edge are flush with the 1/4" lines you drew on the muslin. Pin in place and, if you wish, use pins to baste around it to keep the three quilt layers from shifting.

Sew 1/16 to 1/8" from the edge all of the way around your first hexagon. Obviously, for this one (and a few others) the hexagon goes over the edge of the foundation so just stop sewing when you reach the edge. Make sure to smooth out your hexagon and to keep the edges of the hexie flat as you sew.

Align your next hexie so that it's top edge is butting against the bottom edge of the one you've just sewn. Sew all the way around.

Repeat the steps above until you have your entire muslin covered. For the smaller areas of blank space left on the left hand side of the coaster, trim some excess off of a hexagon you've already attached - once all of the hexies are sewn on you will see this excess, just use the edge of the muslin as a guide (so sorry that I forgot to take pictures of this step) - sew this excess onto the small blank spaces. Most of these small spaces will be covered by the binding, but it's always best to fill in as much as possible.

Evenly trim your coaster down to 4.5" square - this would mean trimming your coaster down about 1/4" on all four sides, but be careful since the coaster may have shrunk slightly with the quilting.

Use the binding strip that you have set aside and bind as desired. I did it the "traditional" way by machine sewing the front side, then folding over and hand sewing the back, but you could machine sew the whole thing on if you wanted! And see all of the pretty quilting that shows on the back from sewing around the hexagons - ohhh yaaaa!

Grab yourself a drink and enjoy! Anne of Green Gables mug totally optional of course but I would highly recommend it *wink*!

So what do y'all think? I really hope you liked this tutorial and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask. Be sure to send me pictures or add them to the Flickr group if you do make a hexie coaster or two using this tutorial!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Flip-Pal Sleeve + the Giveaway Winner

Hey all! How's everyone doing? I've been away for a few days visiting my mum and grandparents, but now I'm back and can finally do this post since I have my computer back and have gotten most everything transferred back on to it - hurray!

One of my big plans while visiting my grandparents was to take my Flip-Pal and scan some of our older family pictures. So, of course, I needed to make it a travel case!


The Flip-Pal is larger than most of the tablet/reader cozy patterns available so I made up my own, but was inspired to add the pocket by Ann Kelle's iPad sleeve tutorial.

Aside from the linen that I used for the outer shell, all of the fabrics used are Heather Ross. I thought it would be fun to use some of the hexagons I had lying arund for embellishment - the big ones were made by me and the two teeny one came to me by Jo as part of the Handsome Hexies swap on Flickr.

I also made the 3/4" button for the closure using a little fussy cut mushroom from some of the Heather Ross gnomes munki munki.

The sleeve came out a teensy bit bigger than I meant it to but hey, that's better than being too small! I bound the top of the pocket using some Heather Ross that I fussy cut and also added a little loop for hanging the USB/SD card reader that holds my photo software.

The lining is, yet again, Heather Ross from the West Hill collection (you can see the scallop here that I fussy cut for the pocket binding). I love this - it just make me so super-happy to have pretty things to carry my stuff around it!

So I guess you want to know who won the Generation Q magazine giveaway, right? Well, without further ado the winner is...

Congratulations Becca! Please email me with with your address and we'll get your magazine out!