Sunday, April 3, 2011

No-Baste Appliqued Hexagon Needlebook Tutorial

Angela, of My Three Sons, has this great tutorial on her blog to make hexi needlebooks.  They are so cute and fun, I thought I'd try it.  Thanks, Angela, for such a great idea!

First I made these three...

Then I made three more...

Then I made this one to send off in a swap before work one morning.  Twenty minutes flat, If that long...

So I thought I'd share my super quick, no baste method.

Angela says she uses a 1-1/2 inch hexi template.  These are 2-3/4 inches on the Outer Hexie with the seam allowance (the length down one side) and 2-3/8 inches finished so they are about twice the size of Angela's creation.   I'll try to post a pdf template tomorrow.  I thought about putting a pocket with a flap in the back for a pair of embroidery scissors, but I haven't done that yet.  Maybe the next one...

Angela used super cute fabric for her outside hexie.  I didn't have any super cute fabric, but I did have a yard of Sew Now, Sew Wow! so I decided to use some of the motifs as appliques.

Applique is easiest if the fabric is stabilized....  And that is how I came up with this no-baste variation on Angela's great idea.

You will need:

A scrap of fabric big enough to cut 2 of the outer template
2 pieces of felt
A 3/4-inch "D" Ring
A piece of Interfacing
Your applique motif
A scrap of Heat N Bond or other double-sided fusible
A hot iron

This tutorial uses two sizes of hexi templates.  Mine are 2-3/8 inches along one side for the Inner Hexie and 2-3/4 inches along one side for the Outer Hexie.

Choose a piece of fabric for the outer hexie that is big enough for your Outer Hexie template.  I chose a scrap of yellow Kona cotton.  Cut out the template along the inside of the line.

Cut 2 pieces of interfacing using the Inner Hexie template

Fold one piece of felt so it is just big enough to cut 2 of the Inner Hexie pieces from it and cut them out along the inside of the line.

Fold the other piece of felt so that the side of the hexie template with the two lines marked perpendicular to the edge is about 3/4 of an inch away from the fold.  Pin in place so it doesn't squirm around.

Cut 2 lines perpendicular to the fold being careful not to cut into the template pattern.

Leaving the center of the fold intact, cut out the Inner Hexie pattern.

Choose an applique motif and cut LOOSELY around the image leaving at least 1/4 inch all the way around.

Now that you have all your pieces, head to your ironing board.

Iron the interfacing onto the inside of your Outer Hexie fabric.

Fold the seam allowance of the Outer Hexie inward along the edge of the interfacing.  When pressed in place, the interfacing gives just enough stabilization that you don't need to baste.

Press all 6 sides in place for both outer hexie pieces, folding along the edge of the interfacing and pressing a crisp fold.

 Turn it over and press it nice and flat with good crisp edges.

Cut a piece of Heat N Bond slightly smaller than your applique motif- just a fraction so it doesn't leave a mess on your iron and ironing board.

Fuse them together.

Peel off the paper backing and fuse the applique motif onto the outside of one of your Outer Hexie pieces.

Head to the sewing machine.

Set your machine up to applique.  Since this project is probably not going to be washed, a raw edge, straight stitch applique could work very well.  I thought I might carry mine around in my purse, however, so I am going to choose a narrow zig zag stitch to help prevent fraying.

For this project, I set my stitch length at 1.0 and my zig zag at a width of 3.0.  I don't have to adjust my tension to applique cotton on my machine, but you may want to check your tension.  For an attractive applique, you want to make sure that the bobbin thread does not pull up to the top of the fabric.  If your machine has a needle-down function, select it now.

I want to stitch right along the outer edge of my applique motif.  The interfacing and the Heat N Bond stabilize the Kona enough that I don't have any trouble with puckering.  This is easy peasy.

When you come to the corners, leave the needle down and turn the corner. I turn my project clockwise when I sew, so for an outside corner, the needle should be down on the right side of the fabric, or the outer corner of the motif.  For an inside corner, the needle should be down on the left, or the inner corner of the motif.  This way, the stitches overlap slightly and give good coverage without a lot of extra bulk or lumpiness.  Trim your threads and make sure the edges of your Outer Hexie are still crisp.  If not, a quick press on the ironing board will make the next part easy.

Layer your inside "lining" together with your outer hexie.

Line up your edges as closely as possible.  Pin if you are so inclined.  I don't pin because I find that the bulk of the felt tends to distort the way the two pieces match up and makes it harder instead of easier.

Stitch closely around the edge of the Outer Hexi with the applique motif.  My applique was perfectly sized so I did not sew over the applique when joining the Outer Hexi to the felt lining.  I sew about 1/8 inch from the edge.

Repeat for the Outer Hexie back.

Scrunch up the middle felt piece and stuff it inside the D-ring...

So it looks like this {this is the part I always forget.  I don't know how many of these I've had to take apart because I've forgotten the D-ring - look at the pink needlebook above... notice something missing?  Yes, I fixed it before I sent it off, but as I said, it was before work and I didn't have time to take another picture...  dumbness memorialized for all time =(  }.

We're on the home stretch now...  Select your needle down feature again, layer your three parts together as shown and...

Sew together along the edge with the D-ring.

When you get to the corner, leave the needle down, turn it around and stitch back over where you just sewed.  This forms the "hinge" on your little book, so you want it to be good and sturdy.

Voila!  One no-baste hexi needlebook.

Thanks, Angela for a great idea.

1 comment:

  1. So fun!!! I'm glad you liked my tutorial, and I love your no-baste method. Very cute collection of needle holders.


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