Tutorial: Machine Sewing Hexies
Hi All! If you follow me on IG (@upstairshobbyroom) you probably saw the time lapsed video I did of me machine sewing hexies together. I had seen a quick video that Lesley from @berry_birdy had posted and knew I had to try it. Seemed like perfect timing too...my quilting disaster had just happened and I had already decided that hexies were the perfect fix....but all that hand sewing, I just didn't have the time for that.
And, yes that is three separate holes....and a panic driven injury! Instead of hitting the stop button when I finally seen the disaster happening, I thought sticking my finger in to protect the quilt was a good idea....😂😂😂 Needless to say, not my smartest move of the day😜 At least no blood got on the quilt!! Hard lesson learned! Even though the computer said the quilt zone was ok, it was just too tight and the sew head just got too close to the take up reel. That combined with the loose weave of the wide back fabric, added up to internal tears. (I just walked around totally stunned...walked away for a timeout too)
Quilters are resilient though, so I had to come up with a plan to save this quilt.....hexies!!! I posted 2 layout options on IG/FB and number 2 received the most votes!! (secretly my favourite too)
This brings us back to finding the "sewing life, changing" video!! I had always thought that you couldn't machine sew hexies.....so this was revolutionary to me!! So I tried it and posted this time lapsed video....
I had a few comments about the video being to fast, which it totally is, but so fun to make time lapsed...(feature in my iPhone camera settings) so I was going to make a regular speed video today and my video feature seems to have died....I've been having issues with the camera too and the Apple Tech guys said it was the chip, and of course I don't have extended care....it maybe time to upgrade...😭$
So here is a picture tutorial of all the steps to get 3 hexies together...when I get a working video I will post that too, but for now, pictures are all I have, hope these help.
- With right sided together, line up the side of the hexies you are going to be sewing together.
- Set under your presser foot and stitch as close to the edge as you can, catching both hexies and back stitching at the start and finish.
- Line up the next hexie on one of the two that you have just sewn and fold the other out of the way for sewing.
- Join the final seam by folding to join the two sides together and stitch.
- Trim threads to clean up and that's it....if you were sewing a flower just continue adding hexies around your centre hexie.
- You do get a little ridge sewing them together this way...which is not a deal breaker for me....but there is another way....
- On the back of one of you cut hexie mark 1/4" lines on two connecting sides.
- Choose your centre and your marked hexie, RST and drop your machine needle into the x where the two lines intersect at the 1/4" seam.
- Stitch 2 or 3 stitches and then backstitch securing the beginning, then stitch to 1/4" from the end of this side and backstitch again. I used my 1/4" foot which has a marking on it, but if you don't have that, mark 1/4" at each intersecting corner. (picture below, shows how to mark a dot)
- Add in your third hexie matching up the next side to the one you just sewed on
- Fold the one you are not sewing on in half and tuck out of your way.
- Start at the 1/4" mark (always backstitching at the start and end) and stitch to 1/4" from the end.
- Now fold your centre hexie in half and line up the final two side that need to be sewn together and repeat the same process.
- You can choose your centre and sew all the petal on and then do the side seams or do the side seams as you go. I've tried both ways and it doesn't seem to matter....just preference. Then press your seams.
I can't tell you how excited I am by this....but that being said I still have a totally hand sewn project I have been working on, off and on, for years. Even though it is taking forever to finish, mainly because it is labour intense and I get bored. It will be a super special quilt when it is finally together.
So hand sew, machine sew, both are possible....It really just depends on the time you want to put in, or the experience you are looking to get! Neither are wrong, they are just choice and preference!! Why not do both!!
I'll leave you with this last tip though....
Have you tried cutting templates for your hexie shapes??? I love mine from PaperPieces.com
- Start by measuring the width of you hexie across the two opposite flat end and using that measurement cut your strips.
- Then place your hexie on the strip and cut the sides.
- You will have a slight over cut with your rotary cutter at the one side, but that is where your next hexie will nestle in. You keep cutting down your strip. These are amazing and make cutting so easy. You can buy them with either a 3/8" added seam or 1/4".
- And if you go looking for the templates.....you find the templates with their corresponding paper over at PaperPieces
Well that's it for this time! Hope you enjoyed the tutorial. Hopefully I will get that camera issue solved soon, and get some videos made.
Have a great week, and Happy Sewing!!