Friday 20 March 2009

patchwork tutorial

In case you hadn't already guessed I love patchwork. So I thought I'd show you how its really not as fiddly as you might think. This is my second piece using the paper template method, and although its time consuming cutting the templates and tacking the pieces, when it comes to the sewing together bit, its far less taxing than having to match things up by sewing machine.

To begin the star and hexagon pattern you will need to draw a hexagon (google image :hexagon!)
Once you've decided on the size, draw lines as above to form the diamond shape and make cardboard templates for you to draw around.

Next you need to cut out six diamonds out of paper. Pin them to your chosen fabric leaving an allowance for folding and tacking, as above.
If you have a stripe fabric be sure to make the fabric pieces all the same so they make a great pattern when sewn together. (known as fussy cutting)

All you need to do now is put the right sides together and simply whip stitch them together, being careful not to catch the paper template!
I found the best way to construct the star was to sew two sets of three diamonds and then put them together and whip sitch all the way along.
Easy right?

This is my last star and its at this point where I start to get excited at the thought of a nearly finished quilt. So much so that I was up at 8 am last Sunday sewing feverishly.

The complete star is now ready to join its buddies.

This part involves a lot of holding and I find my left hand suffers more than my right.

This is probably the fiddliest bit, and I must stress that I am by know means an excellent patchworker! So thank goodness that fabric has a little give, believe me if you find that some of the points and edges don't match up, you are not alone!!

The last triangle to finish!! With my heart pounding in my chest 'I have finished!'.

I actually felt a little sad, because I have really enjoyed this patchwork, so I'm sure I shall be doing it again.
Edited. I have used this pattern again, this time I have made the stars into hexagons, by replacing the white hexagons here, with diamonds. Have a look here.

All I need now is to bind and quilt!! That's another story. I purposefully havent bought any backing fabric yet so I give myself a break before the next hurdle!

I hope Ive inspired someone to give paper piecing a go, it really is addictive, why not start out with a plain hexagon quilt?

Dont forget to enter my giveaway its ending on Monday!
giveaway now ended!


Simone said...

You make it look so easy!!! I would like to have a go at a quilt one day. Yours is stunning. I like the colour combinations you have used.

Mary Poppins said...

You really have inspired me, but think this is one for the clever ones :)

I don't even know what whip stitching is :)

It looks very, very beautiful and you should be very proud of yourself




Shabby Chick said...

It's so lovely! Thanks v much for the tutorial, I thought it was a lot more complicated than that. I don't think I'm up to making a full quilt at the moment but I think I might have a go at doing enough for a cushion :)

Mel xxx

Sal said...

That must have taken some patience!! It's lovely!
Have a great weekend ;-)

silverpebble said...

Thanks for the tutorial Clare. I'm going to squirrel this away for when I have more time. Your quilt looks absolutely gorgeous. It's so lovely to see it take shape. Emma x

Poppy said...

You must have so much patience, it looks lovely!
I can remember my Nan always making them, you have inspired me too have ago one day soon.
I hope you have been making the most of this beautiful weather!
Enjoy your weekend …love Lou xxx

Lynne said...

Ohh this is superb!
I love hand piecing. I have a hexagon quilt that I've been doing for a long time, but I'm hoping to make a concerted effort and get it finished, this year maybe? Hopefully.

Diane said...

Hi Clare, you do have the patience of a saint. I started a patchwork way back in the early nineties. It was going to be a quilt cover, but ended up as a cusion cover!! I used to love the patchwork squares that they used to sell in Laura Ashle's. Does anyone remember them? Twas a sad day when Laura tippled down the stairs - the shop really hasnt been the same since.

Locket Pocket said...

What a fab looking quilt! I've just been scrollling through your last few blogs and saw you mention Geoff Hamilton - he was WONDERFUL! His Cottage Garden book and series were fabulous.

Lucy x

Sue said...

I love your colour choices, this is a really lovely patchwork. Great photos, and a lovely blog! :-)

Encarni said...

Hola gracias por el tutorial. Saludos desde Spain. Encarni

Gloria said...

Hello from Argentina: I love english paper piecing in fact I'm trying a new project now to teach in my patchwork studio and I was wondering if you use just paper to sew the units I thought it wasn't enough and tried a very thin cardboard we call "cartulina" which can be use several times tell me about your experience please and take time to visit my blog !! hugs...Gloria

Anonymous said...

Hi Clare

Just had a read of your tutorial as you suggested. Can I just clarify something as I couldn't see where you mentioned it (this is probably me being a bit of a dumbo here and not reading properly) but do you take the paper out at all and at what stage - is it before you assemble the stars together or after? I know the paper has to come out at some point - just not sure at which stage is best.

Thanking you muchly! :)

Annette - MyRoseValley said...

Okay... Here we go - closing my eyes and taking the big leap. I'll print this tut out. I'll pack a bag of scraps, some paper and a hexagon template, a pencil, needles and thread. And a pair of scissors right. And that is all?

I am going on a SuperMoto trip with my man which means I will have lots of time just hanging around chatting in a chair next to him while he is fixing things on his bike between races... Hand piecing seem to be the right thing to bring along together with a new crochet project to alternate with... Any quick step advice for a real beginner of hand? I am truly terrified but oh so excited! Wish me luck and thanks for sharing. :D