I recently joined the most current pillow talk swap on flickr. We all get to make a beautiful pillow for our secret partner and tease them with pretty pictures while simultaneously being teased with dozens of pictures that just may be for you! It’s a little intoxicating to see all the beautiful pillows being made in one place. Pillows are great to make because you use a technique or fabric or quilting style that are all out of the box because you are just making a 20″ or so square.
I can’t tell you who my partner is because it’s a secret. 😉 But I will tell you that I think she should really like this…in fact, she may have even commented on it. But I’m not saying a word…
What I can tell you is how I made this pillow. It took a lot of work, but I used some great tools to do it. Some of you might remember that Accuquilt recently gifted me with a Go! Baby cutter. And one of the dies that I chose was the Hexagon die. I chose this die in particular because hexagons can be a bit annoying to cut out…all those sides. 😉 I also had a lovely Kona Solids Charm pack that I was given when I lived in New Orleans as part of the Modern Quilt Guild’s challenge with Kona solids. I wasn’t able to make anything before I left, but I’ve been planning on something for a while. Regardless, I was quite happy to discover that with careful placement on the Hexagon Die, I was able to quickly cut the whole charm pack into a lovely stack of rainbow hexagons.
I wanted to hand sew the hexagons together using the English Paper Piecing Technique. But since I have the accuquilt cutter and will be able to make this size of hexagon easily over and over, I chose to make some plastic templates to wrap my fabric around. With the help of another hexagon template, I was cut enough templates for a charm pack. I believe I ended up with 3.5″ hexagons.
Using some lovely Aurifil thread that I was also given (boy I’m a lucky gal!), I made fairly quick work of basting the fabric around the plastic hexagons.
My little stack grew and grew!
I then played around with the fabrics until I found a layout that I liked. I did end up tossing two green charms and adding in a few other Kona solids to make this work…but that’s just because I’m picky like that. I hand sewed each piece together. Such a small sentence for the most work! lol
You might notice that at this point, the hexagons are not square. Hmm…what a concept. That’s what a math major gets you. A keen eye. 😉 So, the next step is to square up the pieced hexagons. You might think that you can just slice up the piece, but you need to be a little more careful to account for the seam allowances.
I lined up the edge of the hexagons so that there is a quarter-inch past the folded finished edge.
Then, I use some small scissors to snip some of the basting threads to undo the folded edges adjacent.
The adjacent sides could be sliced and diced because of the measurements…20.5″ I believe. I marked a line and cut!
You should now have a squared-up, hand-pieced rainbow hexagon design. From here, you can use your favorite technique to turn this into a pillow. I spray-basted some batting onto this piece and then quilted the hexagons with another geometric pattern. Here it is partially quilted so that you can get an idea of how I did this particular design.
I was being all fancy-dancy, so I also quilted a pieced backing for the pillow as well as lining the pillow cover and adding a hidden zipper. All of that adds up to one pretty pillow!
Lining and Zipper:
This is one rainbow that should have gold at the end!