project // quilted hexagon frame
I've been thinking about starting another big (well, more like medium) English paper piecing project. Ever since I saw the ferris wheel design, I've been itching to try it. Since I really shouldn't start another something I can't finish within a short time, I did the next best thing. I used the design to make something that I could finish in a short time!
Actually, it worked out even more perfectly than I could have planned, because I was going to work on a way to use EPP to frame small embroidery. I was going to involve half hexagons though, which I don't particularly love making. So...ferris wheel as a frame it is!
You can use this method to encircle any small embroidery, and really, if you make the pieces bigger, the embroidery doesn't need to be that small! The pieces in the downloadable template have a 1.5" side, making the completed quilty circle about 5 inches across.
Here's what you need:
Basic embroidery supplies
Basic EPP supplies
Quilted Hexagon Frame template PDF
First, you'll need to have some completed embroidery. For this, I chose to stitch the words "Stay True." I wrote them on the fabric with a Xyron pen and stitched with 3 strands of embroidery floss. It's a little tricky to read in some photos...I should have gone with darker thread. But I know what it says, and since it's a reminder for me, I left it this way!
Use your favorite English paper piecing basting method to make the embroidered hexagon and all of the squares and triangles that will go around the center hexagon. Join triangle to square so they will come out in the order you want them to be. My three fabrics follow a pattern.
Join each square to the center hexagon. Once you've attached the first, you can join the next one, then join the square and triangle edges that match up.
After you've gotten all of the pieces attached to the hexagon and all of the seams joined, give your circle a good pressing. Cut a circle of batting and backing fabric to the same size as your pieced front.
Remove the papers from the EPP and place the batting on the back of the pieced front. Sew around the circle close to the edge.
Trim any excess batting and cut off the little flaps from the triangles.
Pin the front with batting to the fabric backing with right sides together. Sew around the circle, leaving an opening to turn it right side out, and making sure that you are sewing inside the line of stitching from when you attached the batting. Back stitch at the start and stop.
Turn the circle right side out. Normally you would clip the curves before turning so that they stay curvy and nice. You could do that here, but I didn't and was okay with how the shape looks.
Fold in the seam allowance (an iron helps!) and stitch the opening closed with ladder stitch.
Stitch around the center with embroidery floss and running stitch to add some quiltiness.
Thread a needle with embroidery floss and take a stitch through the fabric, close to the seam and right at the top center. Tie a knot to form a hanger.
Now you can hang your embroidery somewhere that you'll enjoy it every day! Or...perhaps you'll get a jump on Christmas ornaments. Did I just say that?
The center of this can be filled with any small embroidery you have already finished or you could stitch some just for this. I think it's a great way to highlight some words that you need as a reminder.
I had a hard time narrowing down what I wanted mine to say, but I settled on Stay True because I want to remember to be myself, to stay true to what I believe and value, and to remain focused on what my life is supposed to be about.
What will you fill your quilted frame with?