Caliper + Protractor = ACCURATE HEXAGON!!!!!!!!!

OK, those who follow my blog know that when I start a quilt and run into problems it means that there is a BIG problem with the pattern.  If you read my previous post you know that I had issues with the small templates that come with the pattern so I reversed engineered the templates for rotary cutting.  It took a some time to make a few samples until I achieved perfection! I was on a roll!  Well, little did I know I was on a roll like a large ball of twine that was heading downhill.

This is where I was yesterday, after I called a quilting buddy for some guidance and tips Thursday evening on attaching the first ring to the middle hexagon!

Notice I stopped working on the melons….. I realized that there was a problem with this pattern.  Not sure what, but a problem.  Puckers, star points cut off, and the hexagon not matching up with the seams on the triangles!!!! Grrrrr

This morning I decided to do an early morning house cleaning and then I am free to work the problem out!  Well, it has taken me 3 more hours to work on the problems.  In order to find the problem I cut out 6 each 3 1/2″ squares, marked the 1/4″ seam line, and 6 each setting triangles and marked the 1/4″ seam line.  NO PROBLEM – right – WRONG.  When I pinned the first square and triangle together the triangle was about 1/8″ larger than the 3 1/2″ square.  But I worked around that for the purpose of just getting this test started!  Here is the ring made from the background fabric!  Looks good doesn’t it – well now the problem is on the outside of the ring – the triangles are off about 1/8″ or 1/16″ of an inch and we all know what that will do if I continued on with the 2nd ring of the Medallion.

Test Pattern for the first ring in Robin’s Nest

After sewing the test ring, I thought – OH BOY – time to sew the test center hexagon on my new improved ring!  WRONG AGAIN.  I went to the pattern and started checking the pattern for the large hexagon – and it is off at least 1/8″ or 1/16″ on 2 or 3 sides.  I called for my Engineer and he brought his protractor and caliber and I pulled out Marti Michell’s large hexagon template and between us we now have a perfect Hexagon pattern for the center that should patch all points!  But that does not help the fact that we still have an issue with the lovely triangle template that came with the pattern.  Now the issue is the outside of the ring – to try to continue on without resolving that issue the entire Medallion will be a total disaster.  Thank goodness I stopped working on this quilt at this point because to continue on would be another total disaster.  Here is the hexagon pattern that was provided.  IT has the problem.  All sides should have been 3″ but the are not!  Another Grrrr!

Original hexagon pattern

This is the one that Clay and I worked on and it is perfect – 3″ on each side with 1/4″ seam allowance added.


Here is what I am working toward:

Robin’s Nest Medallion

I have now turned over the triangle template problem over to the Engineer – good project for him to work on in the morning!  ME – I am headed for my chair and watch a movie and forget that I have put a lot of hours into a quilt pattern that has problems.  Jaydee sent me a picture of Robin’s Nest being made by another quilter and it is easy to see that they had issues but kept going – Good Luck to them!  Maybe I am just too much the perfectionist, but when I pay good money for fabrics and patterns and have to totally revamp the pattern by making corrections that the Designer should have caught, it tends to be upsetting.

Tomorrow is another day and I will be ready to move on and hopefully it will work out.  I will have to remake by 6 red stars – too much ripping on the current ring!  When will I ever learn to double check anything these Designers publish?

Have a great week-end.

POST SCRIPT:      Quilter Error – I double checked the triangle template against the ‘test’ piece this morning with a fresh look.  I think I may have picked up 3 of the triangles where I did not cut them accurately – So now I  have CAREFULLY cut out a new batch for the ‘start over’!  I will also be making my notes that I have to pay close attention to when cutting, sewing the ring together.

18 Replies to “Caliper + Protractor = ACCURATE HEXAGON!!!!!!!!!”

  1. I have run into pattern problems also and sometimes it is a big problem – when I sent an email to the fabric company that put the book out (Fat Quarter Shop) they never even bothered to reply to me – I love their store but will not buy one of their pattern books again.


  2. Karen, I cannot tell you how disgusted I am! I will be sending Karen an email in the morning about what I have found. There is no reason for this. I have see a few pictures and the pattern has a flaw in the Medallion and should be fixed. No wonder quilters give up on patterns. No wonder they are doing “modern” quilts – no brainer quilts. I have spent a week trying to get to the point where I was yesterday and bingo – what a mess. But I will fix it and hopefully I can get past the Medallion as the remainder of the quilt looks like changes can be made if there are other issues!!!!! And they wonder why the traditional quilters who have held this business up for years has abandoned their work!

    Have a good Sunday – I am enjoying the movie! Far away from quilting!


  3. Your better with math than I am, I would have just given up. At least this is happening at the beginning and you’ve caught the error. Hopefully things will go better now. Blessings!


  4. I admire your determination, Kathy! The medallion is a lovely design, and you will have a great quilt when finished! I am sure that by posting your journey, you will be helping others who want to make this design.


    1. Hi Laura, I am Nanette. I really did not think that this pattern would be the most difficult but it is. I am starting over again now that I know the pitfalls. Have a great day and thx for commenting. I always like to share my fun and games with patterns! LOL


      1. Argh! I knew your name! Spending time on too many blogs today, instead of slow stitching! I’m sorry!

        Now that brownies are baked, and I’ve done my damages to blogs, I think I’ll slow stitch while watching baseball. Chocolate will help! 🙂


  5. I would have scrapped the project at the get go thinking it was probably my seam allowance causing the problem.


    1. At first I though it was my seam allowance. Now I am drawing the seam allowance on all sides of the triangle and when I make the new stars (you know when you start ripping that it will give one more headaches) I will also draw a 1/4″ seam allowance marking on the inside of each star! Matching dots just does not cut it for me! Have a great day! I am gearing up for a hot summer – getting into the 90’s Wednesday – Summer is here!


  6. Oh, boy! What a headache, for sure. This is a really neat quilt, though. Sorry it took me so long to visit your link on BOMs Away – been furiously trying to get a commission quilt finished up, and had extra class sessions for Taekwondo testing. 🙂


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