For a woman that doesn’t technically cook, my mother spends an inordinate amount of time buying bits and bobs for the kitchen. I came across this hexagon hot pad (trivet) pattern on Aussie site @mypoppetblogs. As well as being the perfect mammy gift, it seemed like a super simple way for me to try paper piecing for the first time.
I’ve been following the sewing sensation that is @MisterDomestic for some time now and he is 💣 (to use one of his favourite emojis). I watched one of his YouTube tutorials on EPP (English Paper Piecing) a few weeks back and it was a r-e-v-e-l-a-t-i-o-n.
It’s a technique I formerly considered too advanced for my limited skills. He breaks everything down so simply and cheerfully though, that no sooner had I watched the first three-minute clip I was on Amazon placing my order for a glue pen and 6″ ruler.
Difficulty rating: * (out of 5)
I had some acrylic hexagon templates already, which I got free with a magazine last year, so I used those to make my own ‘hexie’ templates. Interruptions notwithstanding, it took all of 30 minutes to hand-stitch these babies together.
Fiddly bits? I used paper templates which were fairly easy to rip out (I won’t be able to re-use though). Some of the unsewn corners did come unstuck at this stage, but I pressed them back into shape afterwards 😉
Tips for Success
- I glue-basted my hexagons rather than the traditional stitch basting. If it’s good enough for Mister Domestic! (see also @talesofcloth, one of my top seven modern quilters to follow)
- Try to match thread colours to the hexagons more precisely – I used a bright red to sew two creamy patches together, which you can see pretty clearly in the top pic. Whoops!
- Another tip to minimise stitches showing through is to use a thinner needle 😉
- The last step in the tutorial calls for hand-stitching the layers of the hot pad closed. The next time I make one of these, I will machine top stitch all the way around as I think it will give make the finished article look much cleaner. Yes, my hand-stitching still needs work!
Worth making? This was such a speedily satisfying make and EPP is SO much easier than it looks. I’m hooked! I’m really looking forward to experimenting with some more complex designs.