Hexagon Applique Tutorial

In my Random Perfection quilt I used hexagon applique. To avoid the problems I encountered where the fabric came out,  you will need to make sure some of the folded fabric comes underneath each stitch line. Also, I didn’t use Aleene’s Fabric Fusion glue which is a permanent glue. That may explain why the folds came out as well.

First I’m going to show you how to make a perfect hexagon applique. Then I’ll show you the “more fabric” way which will result in all the edges staying inside the hexagon applique even without permanent glue.

There is more than one way to make a perfect hexagon for applique and English paper piecing, but I like this method.


Cut a strip 2 5/8

Cut a strip 2 5/8″

Cut across the strip 2 1/2

Cut across the strip 2 1/2″. The piece is now 2 1/2″ by 2 5/8″.

Add a dap of glue to your paper hexagon (this is 7/8

Add a dab of glue to your paper hexagon (this is a 7/8″ hexagon)

Trim around the edges. There should be at least 3/8

Trim around the edges. There should be at least 3/8″ from the edge of the paper to the edge of the fabric.

Spray regular starch into lid of starch and apply a small amount around the edges.

Spray regular starch into lid of starch and apply a small amount around the edges of the hexagon with a brush.

Press the hexagon with an iron.

Press the hexagon with an iron.

This is a perfect hexagon applique. You can remove the paper and there’s no basting strings to remove.


Use more fabric and don’t trim the fabric into a hexagon. Instead, do this:

Dab a little glue on paper and attach to the fabric. Do not trim into a hexagon shape. Press.

Dab a little glue on the paper and attach to the fabric. Do not trim into a hexagon shape. Press.

hexagons more fabric


  • Make a few hexagons with the “more fabric” method and apply them using glue. I used Appli-Glue (it washes out).
  • Draw lines 7/8″ apart.
  • Space the hexies 1/4″ apart (1/8″ inch from the hexie edge to the drawn line)

hexagons experiment measuring

  • Make a quilt sandwich:

hexagon quilt sandwich

  • Stitch straight across the points. It takes three passes to get all the points.

hexagon stitch hexagons quilted

  • Square up and bind.
  • Wash it.

What happened?

hexagon experiment closeup

hexagon experiment

Success! None of the ends came out.

Taking a break from experimenting,


I’m linking up with The Late Night Quilters’ Tips and Tutorials Tuesdays.

Random Perfection

Birds fly.

Over the Rainbow, why then, oh why can’t I?

If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, why oh why can’t I?

                                         —Over the Rainbow, Lyric by E.Y. Harburg, Music by Harold Arlen

One of my goals for 2015 was to finish my yellow hexagon applique quilt. The yellow hexagons led me to thinking about The Wizard of Oz musical which I saw last summer and the song, Over the Rainbow. I took the words and used hexagons as musical notes.

I hand appliqued the “notes” and added green and orange hexagons to my rainbow. I machine stitched them using the method I saw on Modern Handcraft.

I added orange for the binding and it looked fabulous.

  • Then I washed it!

why ohwhy can't II noticed that sides of the appliques were not stitched down and were coming out. This was caused by the way I folded the hexies. See in this photo the way the fabric was folded straight down. The stitching across the point of the hexagon did not catch the fabric. Some of the fabric caught and some didn’t.

yellow hexies up closeI fixed some of them. But, man, what a chore.

I’m looking at it and wondering, “why can’t I just embrace this?”

I took off all the hexies which weren’t nailed down — 303 hexies to be exact.

303 hexies

And, I loved the outcome:

random perfection

I would not have placed these hexies in this configuration, but it feels better than the pre-washed quilt. That’s Random Perfection.

Finding home in the random,


Mini Charm Challenge

The challenge from Quilting Adventures quilt shop was to take a pack of mini charms and make something. The mini charm pack included only batiks:

I laid out the mini charms, and they had a water/ocean feel. One looked like a fish. I then attached them to some blue fabric in a wavy manner, using my machine’s feather stitch to applique them to three different strips of fabric:

Wavy batiks

After staring at it for awhile, I realized I would never hang this on my wall or use it as a quilt. Plan B emerged. I’d make a small pocketbook. I used instructions from May Chappell blog. I liked the finished pocketbook, and I took it to the Atlantic Ocean, Chincoteague Island, Virginia this past weekend:

Mini Charm bag

(The fish inspiration is located on the left side in the middle.) I like how the mini charms add interest with the piping across the front of the bag:

mini charm bag closeup

I added a small pocket inside the bag. The instructions did not include a strap, but I wanted one. I used the rest of the piping for that. I used embroidery thread to make the zipper pull/tassel.

mini charm bag inside       mini charm bag other side

There were a few snippets of mini charms left and I created a Project Pouch to store my Row by Row Experiences patterns. I’m planning some projects from my recent shop hop excursions. By the way, one of the shops, Quilts by the Sea, was located on Chincoteague Island, and this gave us a good excuse to visit there for a weekend getaway. More later on my Row by Row Experiences.

project pouch