project: stitched hexagon fiber art
Being a collector is a dangerous business. You can accumulate so much stuff so fast. It's just as dangerous if you're a collector and a crafter, because you can lull yourself into thinking that the supplies you're buying are things you'll use up, but in fact, they are just another collection. Pretty ribbons? How can you use those? Fabulous fabric? It's waiting for the perfect project. And don't get me started on my sticker issues.
This is the trouble I ran into when I joined the Thread Club from Dragonfly Lotus Designs. Liz hand-spins the most amazing embroidery threads! They are so amazing that I treasure them, and thus, have quite a stock of these darling skeins. I've even saved all of the sample thread cards, hoping to put them to use, lest a thread go to waste!
Today, I have a wonderful way to use those stitch-able samples! The fiber art I've created is easy to do, looks pretty, and you can do it too! It's inspired by this lovely work by Rebecca Sower. You can change up the fabrics and colors and stitches to make it your own!
You will need:
Osnaburg or other utility fabric
Embroidery hoop (mine is 8")
Tiny hexagons (mine are 5/8")
Place the fabric in the hoop and lay the hexagons out as you want them. Use as many or as few as you like. You can also use a variety of colors or patterns. Once you've decided on a layout, you may wish to take a quick photo so you remember how you wanted them.
Working with one hexie at a time, remove the paper from the shape. Several fine folks mentioned to me that if you punch a hole in the paper before you make your hexagons, it's easier to remove the paper and you can use a crochet hook. They're right! Especially on the smaller hexagons.
Stitch the hexagons down onto the fabric using different colors and stitches. Space them as close are as far apart as you want, but they'll have a better overall "fit" if they are all spaced evenly.
I found it to be very enjoyable and challenging to find different ways of stitching each of these down. There are 12 hexagons on my hoop, and no two are alike! Of course, it wouldn't need to be that way. Repetition is very nice too.
Another element that would be fun to add to this would be to have open areas without an appliquéd hexagon. Then you could add some embroidery, such as initials, into that "hole". There are lots of possibilities with this!
What I love most about projects like this (aside from showing off some of that treasured thread!) is that it's very free. You can make it anything you want it to be, and truly feel like a fiber artist, while still having some guidelines to work within. It's not quite as scary as a blank hoop without a pattern!
Give it a try and see how it feels to make your own stitches!