English paper piece hexagons and appliqué them to a linen square to create a personalized pincushion. Fabrics for hexagons are from the Garden Flight collection by Eulalia Mejia for P&B Textiles. The Essex linen is from Robert Kaufman Fabrics.
Hexagon Ring Pincushion
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Inspired by: Petals & Plumes from designer Cathy Habermann

Project tester: Doris Brunnette

Finished pincushion: 5-1/2" square

Materials For One Pincushion

Yardages and cutting instructions are based on 42" of usable fabric width.

  • 10" square print (You may need more if you want to fussy-cut hexagons.)
  • 8×14" rectangle linen
  • Sturdy paper, such as cardstock
  • Glue stick
  • Polyester, cotton, or wool stuffing or crushed walnut shells

Cut Fabrics 

Cut pieces in the following order. 

From print, cut:

  • 6—2-1/2" squares 

From linen, cut:

  • 1—7" square
  • 1—6" square

Prepare Hexagons

1. Click on "Download this Project" above for the Hexagon Pattern. Use a pencil to trace pattern onto sturdy paper six times. Carefully cut out paper templates on traced lines. 

2. Pin a paper hexagon template to wrong side of a print 2-1/2" square (Diagram 1). Cut out print hexagon, adding a 3/8" seam allowance to all edges. (Your seam allowances do not have to be exact because the template will be an accurate guide.)

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

3. Add a small amount of glue to one paper template edge. Fold fabric seam allowance over template edge; finger-press and hold until glue secures fabric in place (Diagram 2). 

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

4. Repeat Step 3 with remaining edges to make a basted hexagon (Diagram 3). Do not remove paper template. 

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

5. Repeat steps 2–4 to make six basted hexagons total.

Assemble Pincushion Top

1. Referring to Diagram 4, layer two basted hexagons with right sides together. Align edges to be stitched; pin. Beginning at one corner with a backstitch, hand-sew aligned edges together with tiny whipstitches that catch a few threads of each fabric fold; do not stitch through paper templates.

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

To whipstitch, pull needle through both layers of fabric from back to front at A (Whipstitch Diagram). Wrap thread around edges to back and pull needle through both fabric layers at B. Continue in same manner, spacing stitches the same distance apart, to opposite corner.

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

2. At opposite corner, backstitch and knot thread by passing needle through a tiny backstitch loop. Finger-press joined hexagons open. Check seam from right side to see if stitches show. If they do, restitch seam with smaller whipstitches.

3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 to join remaining basted hexagons in pairs (Diagram 5). Join the three pairs into a hexagon ring. 

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

4. Using a dry iron, press hexagon ring from the wrong side. Remove paper templates by gently pulling glued fabric away from paper.

5. Center hexagon ring on linen 7" square; pin (Appliqué Placement Diagram). Using a small whipstitch, appliqué inner and outer edges of hexagon ring in place to make pincushion top. Trim pincushion top to 6" square.

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

Finish Pincushion

1. Layer pincushion top and linen 6" square with right sides together (Diagram 6). Sew together using a 1/4" seam allowance, leaving a 2-1/2" opening in one edge, to make pincushion cover.

Hexagon Ring Pincushion

2. Turn cover right side out. Firmly stuff with polyester, cotton, or wool stuffing or crushed walnut shells. Hand-sew opening closed to complete pincushion.