Friday, 16 March 2012

Showing off your pieced squares - Tut 1: The Sequel

OK.  If you saw my first Tut, piecing the 2 sets of 5 squares into a star, why not take it a step further and really show off!  People will comment:   'Ah yes, those would be 72 degree diamonds', to which you would reply:  'Ah yes, but only if they were on the plane'.  They would walk off thinking either you are a maths genius or a complete prat!

Anyway, if you add a further set of 5 squares (in a medium colour, where the bottom 5 would be dark and the upper 5 would be light), it changes the pin cushion into something of a marvel.  If you use one of the heavier fillers for your pin cushion, it might also be used as a pattern weight or paper weight.  If you keep one of those in your pocket on the first weigh-in at WeightWatchers, you could remove it the next week, get weighed and in the meantime, eat what you want and apparently still loose weight.  I did it, so you don't have to.

Make sure you add your 3rd set of 5 with the point of the squares pointing downwards, as so....

Make sure you add the top diamond by joining exposed point to exposed point and that's it. Don't forget to leave a gap in one of the seams.  Then you stuff it!  I don't like Polyfil, toy stuffing or wadding because they make the pin cushion to light for me - when I stab in a pin with one of those, they fly across the room.  (Much in the same way as a pig would if I turned up on time, finished anything, found lost items in less time than it takes a snowball in the freezer to melt.....).  Don't forget to use the doubled thread and pull the centres tightly, it really does make the points stand up much better.  Then, cover these stitches with a bead, button or my cheapskate home-made button (see Bit's I Forgot on the nineteenth March).  Most importantly,don't make your squares any smaller than 1 1/2" or they will have to take away all your sharp objects.

The next pincushion (made for the Icknield Quilters' Sales Table at the Baldock Festival on May 19th (nineteenth - this nine looks like four, but it is a nine) 2012 - have I mentioned that before?), is a Cath Kidston hexagon pincushion that you may have made circa 1972 - much with much lovelier fabric.  The papers are cut out, basted and pieced in the exact same manner as Tut 1.  Sew it together, leaving the usual gap, stuff and put in a drawer, never to see the light of day again (or... use it)

Then, lend your camera to someone before you photograph the finished item.

What about making one smaller?
I didn't like the finish on this one - too hard to turn out the  points so I made another one, ironed it thoroughly with the papers in, took the papers out and sewed it with a decorative stitch from the right sides, stuffing it lightly as I sewed.  This gave a much better finish.
 What about making one with just 8 hexagons?  Notice that I have cut out my fabric in squares.  To cut the right size, just measure your hexagon across any pair of sides and add a 1/2".  That is the size square you need to cut out - cut a strip that width, then cut into squares.
Make the usual rosette/flower and then sew up adjacent sides to leave  just enough space for the  8th hexagon

You could also make 2 rosettes and then add, alternating, 6 more hexagons and 6 squares - make the square by laying one of the edges of the hexagon template against square paper, mark and cut out.  The square just has to have sides which are the same length as that of your hexagon side.  Sew the squares to the edge furthest away from the centre of the rosette/flower and fit the new hexagon in the 'dip'.  I make a string of these new pieces and then sew them on.  You will probably have to leave two sides of one of the hexagons unsewn on the bottom flower for turning out.

Next time:  Making Templates (should have been before this) and Getting Organised (just a little too late!).  
Come back soon, there will be chocolate.............

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