Category Archives: Hexagon Quilts

She Who Sews – OBW #93

I fell in love with this panel by Riley Blake.

Measures 24″ x 44″

I made my “She Who Sews” OBW using Studio 180 Design’s Star 60 tool to cut the triangles and make the cubes and stars.

She Who Sews, measures 66″ x 69″

Check out my upcoming classes for using the Star 60 tool on this site under the tab “OBW & Star 60 Zoom Classes”

Star Chamber

Star Chamber is my design created with the Star 60 tool & Striped 60, Framed 60, Checkerboard 60 Quad 60 & Caped 60 Technique Sheets.  The next Star 60 Basic Zoom Class is scheduled for January 22, 2022, sign up on this site under the OBW & Star 60 Zoom Classes tab.

Studio 180 Design is running an exclusive special through the end of January of 20% off the purchase price of the Star 60 and/or Wedge Star tools. You can purchase the tools at the links below: Use the code OBWwithStudio180 at checkout to get the discount.

Star 60 Collections

Wedge Star Collections

Star Chamber, Measures 57″ x 67″

Star Chamber contains 6″ hexagons, 6″, 12″, 18″ and 24″ stars.

Ray of Hope – OBW #91

My latest One Block Wonder “Ray of Hope” a panel by Josephine Wall measures 79″ x 62″. I incorporated 6″ finished Framed 60 stars made with the Star 60 Tool.

Ray of Hope

Reserve your spot in my next OBW Zoom Class January 8, 2022, 1:00 PM (Eastern Standard Time). For class details click on the OBW Zoom Classes tab.

Rainbow Forest OBW #90

Rainbow Forest by Alexander Henry

I saw this fabric by Alexander Henry and just had to have it. It is a large print with a 24″ repeat and is full of vibrant colors. I knew I want to add a large star constructed from Star 60 & Quad 60 units.

I made 3″ finished Quad 60 and Star 60 units.

I thought I would incorporate this 12″ hexagon into my design as is.

But, I decided to add points turning it into a 24″ star by adding 6″ finished Quad 60’s for the points.

The photo’s above show how I made the 6″ hexagons and the 24″ star fit together.

Rainbow Forest, measure 64″ x 68″

Rainbow Forest is not yet quilted, but it will be soon.

Celestial Journey – OBW # 88

I love Josephine Wall’s art, her fabric panels are glorious. They make spectacular One Block Wonders.

Celestial Journey panel measures 35″ x 43″

These panels must have been either the beginning of the run or the last. The outer edges were off be about 1/2″. I focused on aligning the panels around the unicorn. The outer edges were mostly space so it was not crucial they be perfectly aligned. I cut my strips 3.75″ by WOF.

Celestial Journey, 76″ x 100″

I wanted to give my travelers a destination. I created a nearby galaxy for them consisting of stars created using my Star 60 Tool and 5 technique sheets: Quad 60, Framed 60, Striped 60, Checkerboard 60, Capped 60.

#studio180design #Star60 #Quad60 #Framed60, #Striped60 #Checkerboard60 #Capped60 #QuiltersDreamBatting #Bernina740

Spirit of Flight – OBW #86

One day, several months ago I received a text from my sister Marti in Arizona. She frantically wanted to know how panels were needed for a One Block Wonder (OBW). I quickly answered “7” panels were needed. I thought she must have a found a fabulous panel to work with. Then about a week later I a received a package from Marti.

Spirit of Flight by Josephine Wall

Marti had sent me 7 panels by Josephine Wall & 3 Wishes. I was obsessed and couldn’t wait to make this panel into a OBW. Marti said this would be me when I emerged from breast cancer treatment. She was right!

Spirit of Flight measures 97″ x 71″

As I was working on this OBW I realized that most of the hexagons would be toward the back. I made these great stars using Studio 180 Design Star 60 Tool and the Framed 60 Technique Sheet to enhance my design. Now she is shooting for the stars and leaving cancer behind!

#studio180design #star60 #framed60 #3wishesfabric #josephinewall #Bernia #Nolting #Quiltersdreambatting

Rainbow Kitty OBW #82 & the Star 60 Tool

The official name for this quilt is Samantha’s Rainbow Kitty. This quilt was made with love for my Granddaughter Sam. It was supposed to be finished for Christmas but it is in time for my special Valentine.

Panel by Chong-A-Hwang for Timeless Treasures

Why did I choose 5.5″ Finished Hexagons?

This panel measured 23 inches wide. I chose 5.5″ (Cut my strips 3.5″) finished hexies because 4 X 5.5 = 22″. Now I only have trim 1/2″ from both sides and my hexies will fit along the bottom and the top of the panel.

Checkerboard 60

I wanted to add a large star to my design. Using my Star 60 Tool and Checkerboard 60 Technique Sheet I was able to make a great star.

I began by deciding on what size to make my star. I wanted it twice as big as my 5.5″ finished hexies, hmmm, that means an 11″ finished star. The Checkerboard Technique sheet makes beautiful stars in 17 sizes from 2″ up to 18″ in 1″ increments. I needed to make 5.5″ Finished units. I followed technique sheet instructions for a 6″ Finished Units and will trim them so they would finish at 5.5″ units.

Step 1 – Make two strip sets.

Step 2 – Layer the strips sets one on top of the other right sides down. Using the Star 60 tool and a regular ruler establish the 60 degree angle.

From the first cut, cut additional angled sections the same width as the as the cut size of the diamond strips.

Step 3 – Pair each “A” section with a “B” section. Make sure the inner and outer diamonds are oriented correctly. The pink diamonds will be the inner part of my star. The outer diamonds are yellow.

Mark 1/4″ seam allowance using the Magic Wand.

On the edges you will be stitching together, mark the 1/4″ seam allowance across the seams on the wrong side.

Pin section A & B

Stitch your section “A” with Section “B” units.

Press the seams open.

Step 4 – Trim the outer diamond using the Star 60 tool. I trimmed using the Outer Diamond Trim Guidelines for a 5″ finished unit.

First cut.

Continue cutting side triangles.

Step 5 – Add the side triangles.

Layout the right side triangles.

Position the side triangle on top of the diamond, matching the flat corner to the edge of the diamond.

Stitch with the diamond on top.

Press toward the diamond. (Whatever you are pressing toward, goes on top.)

Layout the left side triangle.

Position the the remaining side triangle on the other side of the diamond point. Align the flat corner of the triangle with the edge of the diamond, aligning the raw edges as before.

After it is stitched, but before you press, trim the unit as shown above to remove bulk.

Press toward the side triangle.

Step 6 – Trim the pieced Star 60 unit suing the Star 60 tool. I trimmed using the 5″ finished unit guidelines.

Step 7 – Describes the trimming the final edge. I did not complete this trim. Remember, I need an 11″ finished star, which means I need 5.5″ finished units. I accomplished this by trimming the diamonds per the 5″ guidelines. I created an 11″ finished star by NOT trimming the outer edges of the star.

Layout your diamond units.

Stitch your diamond units together creating two halves.

Making Star 60’s – To make 5.5″ finished Stars, I am following the cutting instructions for 3″ Finished Units. Remember, the chart refers to UNITS not to Finished Stars! To use the chart, first determine the desired finished size of your unit, then follow the row across for the strip size for the shape you want to cut.

Cutting the Diamonds – I followed the cutting instructions for 3″ finished units. Trim one short edge at a 60 degree angle as shown above. Locate the Diamond Sub-Cut Guideline in the chart which for 3″ finished units is 4″. Align those guidelines with the raw edges of the strip and the angled cut just made as shown in the diagram. Cut along the leading edge of the tool to create oversized diamond shapes.

Cut your side triangles. For 3″ finished units the side triangle strips are 2 1/2″.

Layout the right side triangle.

Position the side triangle on top of the diamond, matching the flat corner to the edge of the diamond.

Stitch with the diamond on top.

Press toward the Diamond. Layout the remaining side triangle.

Position the the remaining side triangle on the other side of the diamond point. Align the flat corner of the triangle with the edge of the diamond, aligning the raw edges as before.

Trim the bulk as shown above.

Press toward the side triangle.

I followed the cutting instructions for 3″ finished units, BUT I’m making 5.5″ finished stars, so I’m trimming the Diamond Point using the 2 1/2″ guidelines. I do not trim the outer edges of the unit to obtain a 5.5″ finished star.

Star 60 Units

Stitch units into two halves.

Designing With the Hexagons

The final layout

After I numbered my rows, I stitched the four rows above the checkerboard star into two rows, and the same with the four rows under the checkerboard star as shown in photo 1. Photo 2 shows stitching the top and bottom row to the checkerboard star halves. Photo 3 shows the two rows joined together.

Continue to stitch rows into 4 sections, Left, Right, Top & Bottom.

I placed the bottom section right sides together to verify how much I need to trim off the sides of the panel so it will be the same width as the top and bottom hexies. In this case I trimmed 1/2″ off both sides.

You can choose to attach either the top or bottom hexies first. I chose the bottom because I wanted to control where the hexies attached to the bottom of the panel. After the hexies are laid out and stitched together we loose 1/4″ between them. I felt I could safely loose a couple of inches off the top of the panel without affecting the design. But I did not want to loose inches off the panel bottom.

I pressed the bottom hexies under 1/4″ and top stitched them to the panel.

Match up the hexies/dog ears of the left side with hexies/dog ears on the bottom. Stitch leaving about 12″ from the top of the panel.

Place the panel and partially stitched left side on a table and place the top hexies on top of the panel matching up the dog ears to establish where the top hexies will be stitched to the panel.

Pin top to the panel being sure the dog ears match up to the left side hexies.

Top Stitch the top hexies to the panel. Finish stitching the left side to the panel and top hexies.

Match up the dog ears of the right side and stitch.

Samantha’s Rainbow Kitty, measures 75″ X 70″. I will quilt it as soon as the backing arrives.

I’m Repeating Myself Again – OBW #80

What is a One Block Wonder (OBW)? I bought Maxine Rosenthal’s book “One Block Wonders” in 2006 and was totally awestruck! So much so, that I have made 79 hexagon OBW’s since. Whether you are making hexagons or octagons your are creating kaleidoscope blocks – each one unique by using one fabric, one shape for one of kind quilts! With hexagon OBW’s you cut 6 identical repeats and with octagon OBW’s you cut 8 identical repeats.

Octagons are used in the cover photo.

In 2007 I bought Alexander Henry’s fabulous fabric “Lion Eyes”. I always buy at least 6 yards. This time I had 12 yards in my stash.

I made my 27th hexagon OBW and named it “Just Lion Around” It was included in Maxine Rosenthal’s 4th book One Block Wonders of World.

Just Lion Around 2007, OBW #27

I made my first OBW in 2006. That year I made 16 OBW’s. It only took me 14 years to finally make my first octagon One Block Wonder!

Cutting the Repeats: I cut my 8 identical repeats and aligned them just as I would for a hexagon OBW. Now it is time to cut octagon and corner triangle strips. You can make octagon OBW’s in any size. Following Maxine’s suggestion I cut my octagon strips 4″ wide. Maxine said to cut the strips for the corner triangles 2 3/4″ wide. I am a Studio 180 Design Certified Instructor. You may be able to take the girl out of the studio…but you will never take the studio (180) out of the girl!

Instead of 2 3/4″ strips, I cut my corner triangle strips 3″ wide, that would give me a little more to trim off the completed octagon blocks. After I aligned and trimmed one long edge of the repeats, I re-measure the width of my repeat to verify how may strips I can cut. My trimmed, aligned repeat measured 23″. For every two strips used to make octagons, cut one strip for the “Sensational Squares” (corner triangles). If I cut four 4″ strips and two 3″ strips it equals 22″. Now I know I have enough fabric in my repeat without cutting myself short.

First cut

As I said earlier: You may be able to take the girl out of the studio…but you will never take the studio (180) out of the girl! I am using Studio 180 Design’s Wedge Star Tool to cut my wedges for the octagon blocks.

The beauty of the Wedge Star tool is you can make octagons in sizes 3″ to 24″.

I found it easier to cut both left and right wedges by placing the octagon strip vertically on my cutting table and pull the strip toward me as I cut. The Wedge Star tool instructions show how to cut the units horizontally also:

Continue cutting your wedge units. I got 23 wedges per strip.

From the 3″ strips cut your 3″ squares using your Tucker Trimmer I.

Cut you squares diagonally once and set aside.

Because hexagons are made with equilateral triangles you have 3 choices as how to design your block. With Octagons you only have one choice, the narrow end of the wedge is always the center.

Align two wedges and chain stitch the four pair.

As with hexagons, press all seams open. I love my Strip Sticks for that.

Remove “dog ear” and sliver trim the wedge pair. Righties orient the wedge pair so the 90 degree corner is in the upper right (lefties orient the wedge pair so the 90 degree corner is in the upper left). Align the common diagonal line on the Tucker Trimmer with the seam and slide it toward the corner just until the sides of the tool touch the very edge of the wedge pair and trim. Note there may be just a few whiskers trimmed here. This is called Trueing up your 90 degree angles and will create a much more square unit.

Match up two wedge pairs, stitch them together and press seams open.

Find the center of the two wedge halves by placing a pin where the two seams meet in both units and align the halves. Pin close to both sides of the first pin, then remove the pin in the center. This will help to center you octagon wedge halves.

Stitch your wedge halves together.

Press your seams open.

I placed my octagons on the design wall as I made them. This helped me to see what I had.

Here I am looking at life through rose colored glasses. again Time to sort the octagons. Looking at the octagons through red plastic helps me to sort the octagons by value. If you didn’t know, I have been battling breast cancer. I am responding well to treatment, but as my hair grows back, I’m noting a resemblance to the Old Man Dancing for the Six Flags commercials.

Sorting the octagons by predominate color or value was more difficult than I thought it would be. I think because the octagons don’t nest with each other as the hexagons do, you don’t get the same flow and movement. I’m saying this because after I added the corner triangles i wasn’t as happy with the design. Take your designing!

Tip: This is most important tip! Place a flower pin in the top wedge of each octagon! By doing this you will be able to easily orient the octagons as you remove and place them back on the design wall. It will keep your brains from falling out!

Adding the “Sensational Squares” (corner triangles).

One set of corner triangles is laid out as shown above making a kaleidoscope square.

Those squares will fit into the space between 4 octagons.

When you step back from the design wall, the square will appear to be gone as the 4 octagons blend together.

I worked with one row at time, deciding which set of corners to add. Remove one octagon at a time and stitch the triangle to the appropriate octagon wedge. In affect, you will be adding corners that effect two rows at a time. In the end, each octagon will have a different triangle on each corner.

Center the octagon wedge over the corner triangle and stitch. Press toward the corner triangle. Remember Deb Tucker’s tip when pressing: “whatever you are pressing toward, always goes on top”!

Above shows the corner triangles added to the inner octagons.

Once the inner octagons have the corners added, continue adding the final corner triangles to the outside edges of the octagons.

Trimming the Octagon Blocks: The octagon units need to be squared up to 6 1/2″.

If you don’t know the beauty of using the Tucker Trimmer you will love this. The Tucker Trimmer is marked with a “Common Diagonal line and Size Lines to help you perfectly center each unit or block for trimming. For righties the Common diagonal line is placed on the center seam going from the bottom left to the upper right. The 6 1/2″ size line is positioned from the upper left to the lower right going through the center of the block. The size line and common diagonal line should intersect in the center of the block centering it perfectly for squaring up. Trim up the right side and across the top. Rotate the block place the 6” clean up lines of the Tucker Trimmer on just trimmed lines of the block. Trim up the right side and across the top.

When all the octagons are trimmed it’s time to stitch your blocks into rows and then join your rows to complete your quilt. My layout was 9 X 10 = 90 – 6″ finished blocks measuring 57″ X 63″ unquilted. I learned a lot in this process. I think my layout would have been more satisfying if I had left it more random. I was trying to create an oval shape with the lighter blocks in the center. But there wasn’t enough contrast between the medium and light blocks. I’ve always been a little contrast challenged.

Check out my post Hallucinating With My Spirit Animal for more ways to use your Wedge Star Tool.

Hallucinations

The Spiderweb Quilt Below can also be made using the Wedge Star tool.

Spiderweb Quilt

The Road to OZ – OBW #78

I love the Wizard of Oz! I know it is a very controversial movie, either you love it or hate it! In 2008 Quilting Treasures came out with the Wizard of Oz fabric line. The first fabrics were in sepia tones. I have made many, many Wizard of Oz quilts from my extensive Wizard of Oz fabric stash. This Road to Oz is for me!

I used Studio 180 Design’s Star 60 Tool to enhance my One Block Wonder. Aside from cutting the equilateral triangles I will share how to cut Whole Hexagons, Half Hexagons and make a Half Hexie Braid for borders with the Star 60 tool.

This fabric by Quilting Treasures came out in 2009 and has a 23″ repeat. I’ve decided to use it as a panel on the quilt top. The width is a little over 43″. I need to determine what size finished hexie will fit evenly across the bottom & top of the panel. If I cut my strips 3 3/4″ wide they will produce 6″ finished hexies. If I trim my panel to 42″, I can fit 7 – 6″ finished hexies across the bottom and top of the panel. Note: I NEVER trim the panel until I have my hexies designed and verify they fit the way I want them to.

Strips are cut.

I used my Star 60 Tool from Studio Design to cut my equilateral triangles. Be sure the tool point just touches the cut edge of the strips. we want dogears to help lining up blocks and rows.

TIP: You know those pieces you have left at the of the strips that are too small for a full size hexie? One side is already cut at a 60 degree angle, if you place the tool edge on the straight side of the pieces, adjusting the edge of the tool to not include the selvedge and cut, you will have small hexie that can be appliqued onto your top.

My triangles are cut, stitched and sorted by predominate color.

Placing the panel on the design wall takes some thought and planning. My design wall consists of 4 closet doors 24″ wide, that are covered with flannel over insulation, so I have plenty of room. My goal was to create a path that would connect the yellow brick road on the right side with the yellow brick road on the top of the panel. I placed the panel so there would be more room on the right side and the top of the panel.

Remember, I can fit 7 – 6″ finished hexies across the bottom of the panel. The hexies are not finished yet, so they don’t fit well. They extend further than the panel. Keep this in mind to keep track of where your rows are so you don’t get confused. If 7 finished hexies will fit across the bottom, that means 14 half hexies will establish the width of the bottom section and the top section. I started at the bottom of the panel and then worked my way up the sides. You may start at either the top or the Bottom, it doesn’t matter.

First attempt at my design was close, but I didn’t feel the yellow hexies I had were creating a vibrant connecting path. I tried again surrounding my path with darker hexies & decided to create some Star 60 Units instead.

Cutting the Diamonds: To create a Star 60 Unit that contains a diamond with side triangles that would create a 6″ finished hexie I went to the Basic Shape Cutting Chart in the Star 60 instructions. I followed the cutting instructions for 2 1/2″ finished units. For my diamonds, I cut a 2″ WOF strip. Trim the first edge at a 60 degree angle as shown above. Locate the Diamond Sub-cut Guideline in the next column for 2 1/2″ finished unit which is 3 1/2″. Align those guidelines with the raw edges of the strip and the angled cut just made as shown above. Each hexie will need 6 diamonds.

Cutting the Side Triangles.: Checking the chart for Side Triangle Strip size, I cut my 2 1/4″ WOF strips. Align the mark near the top of the tool with the top of the strip and the horizontal line on the tool that corresponds to the width if the strip (2 1/4″). Cut the side triangles then rotate the tool and cut again. Each diamond will need two side triangles. Follow the Star 60 tool instructions for Piecing the side triangles to the diamond.

Trimming Star 60 Units: We will be trimming the flat end of the unit only! Align the Flat Edge trim lines with the seams of the diamond. For lefty’s, rotate the unit so the flat side is on left side. Six of these trimmed Star 60 units are the same size as a stack of 6 equilateral triangles cut from a 3 3/4″ strip. These Star 60 units can be made in 17 sizes.

I loved the way the Star 60 units created a vibrant path to connect to the Yellow Brick Road. You notice a very light block near center of the top. That is Glinda the Good Witch. She wasn’t on the panel but I had to add her!

Cutting Whole Hexagons: I wanted a block that contained the Emerald City. I forgot to take a picture while I cut it, so the instructions below use a different fabric.

The Hexagon Cutting Chart allows you to cut whole hexagons in 15 sizes. For a 6″ finished (6 1/2″ Unfinished) hexie, cut a strip 6 1/2″ wide. Fold the strip in half. Our Horizontal Guideline Placement is 6 1/4″. Place the 6 1/4″ line on the fold and cut both sides. You now have a 6 1/2″ unfinished whole hexagon.

Once I was happy with the block placement, I number my rows across the top and under the bottom section. I stitched the rows into four sections, left, right, top & bottom..

I decided to add the bottom section to panel first. I didn’t want to leave the points because they would cover up Toto, and I couldn’t have that, so I trimmed the top points only. I don’t trim the outside edges until the top is all stitched together.

Adding the bottom section allows me to line up and match the dogears of the rows on the right side.

Lining up the dogears

Pin and stitch the right side rows to the center section using a partial seam. I left a good 8 inches open to leave room for adjusting placement of the top section.

I decided to applique the top section to the panel by leaving the points on the bottom of the top section. I took stitches out about 1/4″ down between the valley of the blocks and pressed the edges under 1/4″.

Lay out the center and the partially stitched right side rows. Lay the top section next to right side rows, matching up the dogears. This will show you how far down the top section will overlap onto the panel.

Pin it well, assuring it is straight and top stitch the center to the panel. Now I’m able to finish the partial seam for the right side.

Adding the left is very easy now. Just match up the dogears and stitch together.

Once the rows are all joined, I trim the points off the top and the bottom of the quilt top. I added a border to the top. I’m thinking about adding a small black border.

Above is a closeup of the showing Glinda & the Emerald City whole Hexie. One more technique I wanted to share is making Half Hexagons. The Star 60 tool instructions have a chart for cutting Half Hexagons in 8 sizes. I thought about making a Half Hexie Braid for a border but my top was too busy.

Half Hexies Braid: I followed the cutting instructions for 1 1/2″ finished half hexies. I cut 3 different 2 1/4″ strips. In the chart locate the “Bottom Horizontal Line” for 1 1/2″ finished half hexie, which is the 4″ line. Place it on the bottom of the strip and cut both sides. Rotate the tool placing the 4″ line on the top and aligning the edge just cut.

Above, I laid out my half hexies alternating the 3 colors.

Pick up the first two right sides together, nudging the top half hexie 1/4″ from the point and stitch together. Press toward the first half hexie.

Add a third half hexie by centering it over the two stitched hexies.

Keep adding half hexies until you have the length you want. After the first two half hexies are stitched and pressed, the remaining half hexies are pressed toward the unit just added. I think this a cool inner or outer border that I will be using on another quilt.

Above are “Inside the Twister” and “Yellow Brick Road with a Twist”.

Ruca the Technicolor Cat – OBW #77

Last January I had the great joy of meeting my half sister Marti for the first time. I also acquired many new family members.

When I saw this panel by Chong-A Hwang for Timeless Treasures, I knew I had to make a One Block Wonder for my Great Niece Alexa. Alexa has a wonderful cat named “Ruca”, whom she has had since she was in college. I met Ruca, a very special cat.

Even though this panel states it measures 24″ by 44″, by the time I cut apart the panels and squared it up, it was more like 23 1/2″ wide. For my finished hexies to fit evenly across the bottom of the panel I would have to make some adjustments. If I cut my strips 3 3/4″ wide, my finished hexies would be 6″ wide, which is not evenly divisible by 23 1/2″. I could just add fabric to the panel to bring it up to 24″ wide and then hide the extra fabric with appliqued hexagons as I have done before.

But I decided to trim the panel to fit the bottom rows of hexagons instead. If I cut my strips 3 1/2″, my finished hexies would be 5 1/2″ wide which would be evenly divisible into 22″. I don’t trim the panel until I’m ready to add the hexies. You can see that four finished hexagons (or 8 half hexies) will fit across the bottom of the panel. Here are my tips for Using Panels for a OBW:

Ruca the Technicolor Cat, OBW #77 measures 62″ X 62″

I am so pleased with how this OBW came out. It was wonderful meeting you Alexa, thank you for your hospitality.