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Topic: English Patchwork/Hexagon Quilt - do I NEED paper templates?  (Read 8989 times)
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« on: March 15, 2010 08:40:26 AM »

Hi there!

I want a simple project to use up some bits of fabric I have lying around, and which doesn't require a sewing machine... so I thought of doing a hexagon quilt - I believe this is known as 'English Patchwork' in the US? I thought all I needed to do was cut out my hexagons and simply keep sewing them together until I had myself a quilt, but Googling suggests that paper templates are involved. This sounds fiddly and time-consuming to say the least! Do I need to use these to make myself a quilt?
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« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2010 10:22:41 AM »

In a word, no. I've been doing a lot of reading lately on quilting, and I've seen instructions for this type of piecing. I've also seen quilters who say it's really not necessary. Think about it... Do you think our ancestors 200 years ago pieced that way? Probably not. They didn't have a lot of paper to cut up and throw away, nor the time, with all the day-to-day household tasks. Quilting was done in stolen moments while dinner was cooking or children were sleeping, etc. Plus, there's really no right or wrong in quilting, it's whatever you want to do!

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« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2010 10:28:28 AM »

I found this tutorial a few months ago http://sewmanyways.blogspot.com/2009/02/granmothers-flower-garden-paper-piecing.html. She shows how you can use either freezer paper, index cards or old cards/those annoying subscription postcards you get in magazines to make paper templates. I tried her freezer paper approach and liked it. You can use the freezer paper a few different times because you can iron and remove it. After a certain point, it doesn't stick to the fabric anymore though.

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« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2010 02:25:06 PM »

Or you could do what I did when I made my quilt.  No paper, just stitch to a 1/4 inch so you can add the next piece into the Y connection.  Hope this makes sense!
« Last Edit: March 20, 2010 02:27:18 PM by SimplySandy » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2010 10:17:26 AM »

Do you NEED them? maybe not. But I have used them and it makes it really easy and I would think, possibly more accurate than doing it without paper. You can buy packs of 100 precut cardstock hexagons for only a few dollars and you can reuse them over and over, which eliminates cutting them out and such.

And I've seen very old hexagon quilts with the papers still inside, so I think many ancestors did use paper. It just helps you keep the shape nice and neat.

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« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2010 08:32:10 PM »

If you're doing larger hexes, you can make them bigger and cut them in half and sew strips.

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« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2010 02:29:46 PM »

If you're doing larger hexes, you can make them bigger and cut them in half and sew strips.

Good point Battleax.  I think that would be much easier, although not as portable maybe than doing hexes by hand.  Mode Bake Shop just had one a bit ago --> here

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« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2010 10:20:47 AM »

since last thursday i have hand sewn 459 hexes using the tut with the freezer paper.  and i love it. i don't not find it overly time consuming... i imagine once i start sewing my hexes together it becomes more time consuming and slightly less portable.

i needed a portable project to take on vacation last weekend. now it is a minor obsession.  my hand hurts. oops repetitive stress injury...

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