Okay once you have the fabric make sure it is ironed….it is up to you whether you wash it or not. I wanted the starch to stay in mine so I left it unwashed. Cut your fabric into strips the width of the template you are using.I don’t know whether I told you all but I used scraps for my mosaic quilt…yes scraps…and I am cutting out more with… ..yes ….scraps!!!
But for this project I bought co-ordinating fabric …but in fat quarters…just to be difficult!
If you have your hexagon template you can now cut out other templates from template plastic or whatever you prefer to use. I personally do not use plastic templates and rotary cutters due to health reasons but understand that I am a dying breed! So the graphic below shows how to lay the template on whatever width half hexagon you are using. The templates Ruth drew up for us finish at 10cm…4in and 15cm….6in and they allow for the usual quarter inch seam allowance. The method of strip cutting really allows little wastage which is a very useful thing in quilting.
Okay now to my rather eccentric but painless way of cutting out templates…it is basically English Paper Piecing or Paper Piecing without the need to keep the papers in when sewing. This is a very accurate way of cutting out and also is useful to me as I have very little room in our flat to lay things out so I can do this on a collapsible craft table quite comfortably. I am all about the comfort!! To enable a really smooth and enjoyable time cutting out my half hexagons for my mosaic quilts….I currently have about three in varying sizes that I am collecting fabric for….I had my scissors sharpened and they then cut through quite a deep pile of hexagons! I was amazed actually at how blunt my scissors had become over time…yes I hung my head in shame as the repair person at Mr Minit examined the tools of my trade.
So I recommend if you are cutting templates the old fashioned way…once you are sure your scissors are sharp enough to cut off your little finger…..that you stack those strips of fabric! I defy anyone to tell me its not as much fun or as accurate as rotary cutting!!! I’m such a rebel at heart! You will need to cut out enough paper templates to fit the width of the fabric you are using, don’t forget.
Oh I forgot to say grab yourself a coffee or a beverage…..non alcoholic….you need your wits about you with those sharp scissors and / or those rotary cutters…not to mention all those angles!
Oh by the way I have found another method of cutting out half hexagons… this method involves using a clear 60 degree triangular ruler and strips of fabric. If you have the triangular ruler it would be an easy way of cutting out the trapezoids.
Now a word about fussy cutting…as you can see this fabric has a delightful….well I think so…pattern on it and it requires a bit of positioning of the template to ensure the seam will still align quite well. I like to use a few larger prints as it adds visual appeal.
So here we have a few trapezoids or as we call them half hexagons …these are only a selection….various people I have seen make these quilts seem to recommend at least twenty different fabrics. Variety does seem to help with placement I feel.
Okay so next…the auditioning of the blocks. Using some sort of design wall or design board….whatever works for you… start adding various pairs of half hexies until like Joan, you get a pleasing arrangement. If you are anything like me you will end up doing two quilts as you just can’t decide between mosaic quilts!
My random quilt for this tutorial is a work in progress…meaning I have to run up to Spotlight tomorrow to get more of those coloured ones scattered through with white that my son suggested I get weeks ago! Believe me more is more with this kind of block…variety just seems to work better, visually anyway.
Please let me know if I have forgotten anything. Next step is the sewing of the strips…an interesting adventure in which several of my friends and I reversed our first seam somehow…we have nnooo idea how and it never happened again!!! At least I was in good company!
I would again like to thank Ruth for her kind use of the graphics and templates.