Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Hexagons with and without the path

After my post yesterday I had a comment and a couple of emails about the use of a path. Kathy had commented that she has seen hexagon flowers sewn together randomly in a quilt without the use of a path. That is exactly what I did when I made my hexagon quilt Ausiegons. I made flowers but instead of one round of hexagons around a center there were four rounds of hexies. It takes some planning to complete the quilt.


When hexies are sewn together in this manner the quilt will become a parallelogram rather than a rectangle. To correct this I added filler pieces to the top, bottom and sides and then the quilt was appliqued to a brown border to give the quilt a rectangular shape. There is nothing wrong with this sewing hexagon flowers one next to the other - the quilt just has a different look and feel but it takes some planning to make the filler shapes because they will have to be different to accommodate the shape of the quilt . If you are a beginner it may be a little challenging planning to fill in the sides to create a rectangle.

To demonstrate the effect of  flower hexies with and without a path I did a quick sketch to demonstrate. The sketches on the left are sewn together without a path and on the right with a path. On the left you can see the slope developing whereas on the right the quilt remains squared. If you sew your hexagons together into diamonds the same issue will arise if a path is not used.

If you chose to add a path there will still be filler pieces created for the top, bottom and sides but the top and bottom fillers will be the same as will the side fillers. And importantly the quilt will have a different look. So before you make the decision whether or not to use a path do give some thought as to how you want your quilt to look and perhaps even sketch it out on hexagon graph paper. The paper above was downloaded from Print Free Graph Paper. You can also find free downloadable design sheets at Paper Pieces.

I hope this explanation will be helpful! Until I post again, happy sewing!
Karen H


  1. Great illustration Karen - you are such a good, diligent teacher! Thanks for the useful links too :)

  2. thanks much-I just never would have know this would happen-thanks

  3. Thanks Karen! We can clearly see the différence between a quilt with and without a path !

  4. Karen I'm so grateful for this post...I've been considering putting my 30's hexagons together without a path...I just like how scrappy they look without the path. And, well honestly, I don't want to make all the plain hexi's. LOL!!!

  5. Thanks so much for the tutorial and diagrams. They really made it clear. Have a great day!

  6. Ausiegons is absolutely gorgeous!! Thanks for such a clear tutorial. You've got a knack for simplifying things.