Hexagon Cushion

Materials

  • 50cm dark blue chambray
  • 50cm square of cotton for backing fabric (can be any colour as it will not be seen)
  • Fat quarter of blue print cotton
  • 10cm square scrap of red fabric
  • 50cm square of wadding
  • 45cm square cushion pad
  • Red stranded cotton thread
  • Tailors chalk (optional)

Finished Size

43 x 43cm (17 x 17in)

Skill Level

Beginner

Getting Started

  1. From the blue print fabric, cut four strips 2in wide.
  2. Trace the smaller hexagon template seven times onto thick paper (Gillian uses old glossy magazines), and cut out.>
  3. Trace the larger hexagon fabric template onto card once and cut out. On the WS of the blue print fabric, draw round the template six times and cut out. Repeat once for the red fabric.
  4. Take one of the fabric hexagons, wrap it round a paper template and finger press. Tack the fabric to the template using running stitch. See Figure 1. Repeat for the others. Press all the hexagons.
  5. Sew the hexagons together, with the red one in the centre, by placing two hexagons RS together and oversewing along the edge. See Figure 2. Add the other hexagons the same way, ensuring all the touching edges are sewn together. Use small stitches and try not to sew through the paper. Press again to hold the edges and remove the papers and tacking stitches.

Handy Hint! Gillian used a quilting hoop to hold the fabric in place whilst appliquéing the hexagons. This stops any distortion of the background fabric


Figure 1 & Figure 2
Figure 1:Tacking fabric to the template
Figure 2: Joining the hexagons

Making the cushion top

  1. From the dark blue fabric cut one 20in square. Fold in half, then in half the other way to find the centre. Finger press and reopen. Place the hexagons in the middle, lining them up evenly with the edge. Smooth out and pin in place. Appliqué the hexagons onto the background using small stitches so that they will not be too visible on the cushion top or on the hexagons. Gillian found dark blue thead was the best to hide the stitches for the fabrics she had used for her cushion.
  2. Take one of the strips of blue print fabric and press in half long ways WS together to find the middle. Open out then press the long edges to towards the middle (WS together), to give a strip 1in wide. Press to remove the initial fold. See Figure 3. Repeat for the other three.
  3. Using a ruler to keep the strip straight, place one strip parallel with the edge of the cushion top, about 2 inches from the end of the hexagons. Pin in place. See Figure 4. Repeat for the opposite side. Appliqué to the dark blue fabric, again using small invisible stitches.
  4. Add the other two strips at right angles, taking especial care that the ends look square. Pin in place and then appliqué them on.

Quilting

Figure 3: Making the blue print strips
Figure 3: Making the blue print strips
  1. Layer the backing fabric with the wadding and finally the cushion top on the top. Smooth out. Tack the three layers together using a large running stitch in a contrasting thread (this makes it easier to remove).
  2. Using blue thread quilt in the ditch around all the hexagons.
  3. Using a spare paper hexagon template and the tailors chalk, mark out the hexagon pattern on the quilt top as though it continued to the blue print border. Using two strands of red stranded cotton quilt this pattern. You may prefer to mark one hexagon, quilt it, then mark the next so you do not rub off the chalk marks before you use them.
  4. Quilt in the ditch along the blue print fabric both inside and outside the square.

Making up the cushion

  1. From the remaining dark blue fabric cut two pieces 12 x 18in. Fold over 1in along one edge of each piece (to give a piece 11 x 18in) and press. On one of them, stitch the fold in place. Gillian used a contrasting red thread and a fancy stitch on her machine, but you could use plain blue thread if desired. Rather than a simple folded back, you could always insert a zip or use buttons to complete your cushion cover.
  2. Trim the quilt top to 18in square and remove any remaining tacking stitches. Layer with the two backing pieces: first the cushion top RS up; then the cushion back with the finished edge WS up, with the finished edge in the middle; finally the other cushion back piece WS up. Pin the layers together.
  3. Stitch round all the edges, by hand or machine, using a 1⁄2in seam allowance.
  4. Turn through to the RS, insert cushion pad, sit back and relax
Figure 4: Adding the borders
Figure 4: Adding the borders

First published in Popular Patchwork Volume 14 Number 9 - September 2006