Sunday, October 6, 2013

the Hex N More Ruler

Lately it seems that quilts using hexagons and equilateral triangles are very popular.  In the past I have made one or two projects with hexagons, but I always used templates to cut out the pieces, not a special ruler.
So, I decided to try out the Hex N More ruler by Jaybird Quilts to see if it made it easier to do.  The quick answer is yes, it does.  Not a big surprise, but it also seems to encourage a lot of new ideas for quilts!
   I decided to make some samples to show some of the types of designs that the ruler is used for.
I cut most of the pieces for the samples from 2-1/2" strips.  for the larger pieces, I had some co-ordinating fabric scraps from a previous project.
 I made 4 samples, and I think I will go through them step by step over 4 posts so that it is not so overwhelming for me to write.

First, though, this is the ruler:
 It comes with a sheep of instructions for how to cut the various shaped pieces.  You can cut from 4 different sizes.   I went with the size that was compatible with 2-1/2" strips.

Sample One;  Hexagons offset with triangles

 to do this, you need to cut two shapes: a large hexagon and small triangles

I started with the small triangles, because of the 2-1/2" strips, this is pretty easy. 
The ruler has the tip of the triangle removed so that cutting is standardized for strips that are a multiple of half inches instead of some strange measurement.  Also, it provides a guide to how to place the pieces for sewing -- more about that later. 
The hexagon size that co-ordinates with the 2-1/2" triangles is the 4-1/2" size. 
You cut the hexagons from a 4-1/2" strip.
Cut one side of the hexagon, flip the strip over and cut the other side.
The triangles will be sewn on two opposing edges of the hexagons.  You can line up the little cut off end of the triangle with the side of the hexagon, or you can just center the triangle on the edge. 

 here they are pressed, and they are now diamond shaped,
 then you just sew them together into a row, again, just being watchful where the intersections are

If you were making a quilt, you would make several rows, and sew them together, with the diamonds on the top and bottom of the hexagons.  This sort of piece would also make a nice border.

that's the first sample I made with the ruler,

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