I always wanted to make a basket for my most used tools to keep it on the cutting table. Epp necessities Sew Along was a perfect opportunity to do that. This project uses the same principle as Round hexagon pincushion and combines my love for English paper piecing, simple quilting and applique. I used beautiful Tilda fabrics, linen and some scraps. I can´t say it is a quick make but it is totally worth all the time spend. It measures 8" in diameter and 8 1/2" tall, has 6 pockets on the sides and a peekaboo Tiny Dresden. This project is suitable for an experienced beginner.
What you need
- 56 1 inch hexagons basted by your preferred method ( you can find basting tutorial here )
- for the exterior:
- quilting cotton or linen fabric - cut 8 1/2" circle for the bottom and a piece 3 1/2" wide x 26 1/2" long for the side border. If you use linen, pre-wash it.
- foam stabilizer (I used Bosal Foam stabilizer in-R-form) - cut 8" circle and a piece 8 3/8" wide x 26 1/2" long,
- leather handles - cut 2 pieces 1 1/2" x 4 1/2"
- for the lining:
- quilting cotton - cut 8 1/2" circle and a side piece (see the notes regarding the length of the strip in the text #8)
- batting (9 1/2" x 26" (optional, if you would like some padding to the lining).
- for the pockets:
- cut a piece 10 " x 26"
- bias binding (optional, see notes in the text #13) approx 1 3/4 x 34",
- for the binding:
- cut a strip 2" x 29"
- water soluble marker
1. Arrange your hexagons in 4 rows with 14 hexagons in each row and sew your hexagon panel (here you can find a whipstitch tutorial) .
2. On the piece of linen fabric for the border mark a 1 inch line from the bottom.
Don´t remove the papers from the hexagon panel. We shall applique the top edge of the panel with papers in on the border fabric to give a nice crisp edge to your applique.
Pin the top of the panel in the way shown below - the top edge of the seams between hexagons is on the marked line.
Applique the panel.
3. Cut excess of linen fabric at the back to 1/2 seam allowance.
Remove the papers. Here is a short video
4. Cut the bottom piece, mark 8" circle and quarters of the circle with a water soluble marker. These markings will serve as reference points when we attach the bottom to the sides. Mark quilting lines at 45 degrees, making sure you start markings from the center. The distance between the lines is 1 inch.
Cut an 8" circle from foam stabilizer and place it to the wrong side of the bottom piece in a way that you have 1/4" seam allowance around. Make sure that you place the correct side of stabilizer to fabric.
Pin and quilt it.
5. Trim the short sides of the linen border to 1/2" seam allowance from the edge of the hexagon. My linen border was 25 5/8" long.
6. Trace the edge of the hexagon panel to the foam stabilizer on both short sides and cut out on the traced lines. Pin the stabilizer to the panel.
This is how it looks from the back. Note the placement of the bottom edge of the hexagon panel on the stabilizer. There is no stabilizer on the side seam allowance of the linen piece neither on the tips of hexagons at the bottom.
7. Mark the center of your panel and draw quilting lines. I drew the lines 1 inch apart. You can use any quilting design. Quilt the panel.
Tie the thread ends at the bottom and trim them to approx 1". We shall hide them when we applique.
8. After quilting the exterior panel measured 25 1/4" from side to side (including 1/2 inch seam allowances on each side). If you choose different quilting design or quilt with larger distance between the lines then there might be slight difference in measurements. I had to trim the linen piece at the top. Linen has a loose weave and easily shifts during quilting. The height of the foam stabilizer was 8" after trimming.
After you trim the upper edge, decrease stitch length to 2.0 and stitch a line 1/8" from the top to secure your quilting.
The width and height of your quilted panel is very important as you need to cut your lining accordingly. So I need the lining piece to measure 8 3/8" (I added 3/8"seam allowance) x 25 1/4" (don´t cut it now, see notes below in #12).
9. Now we shall sew the side seam. Hold your piece right sides together, linen part facing down, align the edges of your hexagons and start whipstitching. Since there is no paper inside, make sure that you are catching only a tiny bit (just few threads) of fabric when you are stitching. Stitch all the way down.
Now pin the linen sides together aligning the foam pieces and quilting lines if necessary, mark where the hexagon part starts and stitch as close to the foam as possible.
I also hand stitched along the seam through the foam on the hexagon part and attached the linen seam allowances to the foam.
This is how it looks from the front. You can´t see the hand stitching on the hexagon part.
10. Now we shall attach the bottom to the exterior panel.
Pin the back seam right at one of the quarter markings and align the next seam on 8" line and pin. Applique the first hexagon tip. Pin the next seam and applique the next tip.
Sometimes you might need to pin at the tip of the hexagon. Just go slowly and work with one tip at time.
The trickiest part is to applique last 2 hexagons to the top. But it is manageable - just use more pins and find the most comfortable way to applique.
Look how perfectly round the bottom is!
11. Attach leather handles to the sides. Fold the tabs in half and attach by machine using leather needle.
12. Now we shall work on the lining. You can use just a piece of fabric for the lining ( 8 3/8" x 25 1/4").
But I think it is better to add a piece of thin batting and quilt the lining piece. Since we shall add some pockets the batting would make the piece sturdier.
If you would like to do that, then cut your lining slightly bigger (9" x 26"), quilt it and trim to 8 3/8" x 25 1/4".
I also decided to add an embellishment to the lining. Tiny Dresden from Tilda scraps is a perfect detail (pattern by Deidra @quiltyobsession).
13. Adding a pocket to lining. Fold the pocket piece in half along the short sides and iron. if you don´t want the embellishment, then simply top stitch along the folded edge at 1/8" from the top.
If you would like to add the Tiny Dresden, then lay the folded pocket on top of the lining piece and mark the cut out underneath the Dresden (I used a bowl to trace the cut out).
Fold the bias binding in half lengthwise and iron. Attach the binding to the front, then fold it to the back and hand stitch in place.
Pin the pocket panel to the lining and stitch vertical lines for the pockets at the desired distance. I have 6 pockets.
14. Fold the lining piece in half and stitch the short sides together with 1/2" seam allowance. Iron the seam open.
15. Attaching bottom to the lining side panel. Fold the side piece in half and mark the half point at the bottom, then fold in half again and mark quarter marks. Pin the bottom to the side piece at quarter marks.
If necessary you can pin in between the marks as well. I prefer not to do it but rather adjust the edge of fabric with fingers as I slowly stitch around. Try not to pull the fabric on the bottom piece as it can easily stretch. Stitch with 3/8" seam allowance.
Turn the lining right side out and iron.
26. Now insert the lining inside the exterior piece and align it. You might need to trim the lining at the top. Pin the top with clips. Attach the binding to the exterior piece, fold in half and hand stitch it to the lining.
Your round hexagon basket is ready!
Fill it with your most used tools and enjoy the result!