Block 6 – From our little hive to yours x

It’s lovely to hear the little bees humming, busily working together, nurturing the hive – it reminds me of the hum of the sewing machine, and how just like the busy little bees, so much can be achieved when we work together x X

From our little hive to yours x

This months block “From our little hive to yours” is mostly an EPP (English Paper Pieced) project which can be sewn in the sunshine, on the beach, or nestled up in a cosy spot.

Block 6 measures 10 1/2” square before joining to other blocks.

So lets get busy, to make the block you’ll need….


11” square Off-white or Low volume fabric (e.g. Moda Bella Solids 9900 200)

Fat Eighth – Ivory/Cream floral (Caroline no. 18650 11)

Fat Eighth – Aqua (e.g. Caroline no. 18652 12)

Fat Eighth – Green floral (e.g. Caroline no. 18653 14)

1″ square – white or glittery fabric (for bees wings)

Gutermann Sulky Cotton (30 weight) col. 4001 – Parchment for hand-quilting

Embroidery floss in yellow and brown or black

Gutermann Sew-all thread in dark grey (col. 701) and taupe (col. 854)

Optional: Stabiliser or lightweight interfacing , silver thread for wings

Equipment: Sewing machine; Iron, ironing board and pressing cloth.

Notions: Clover water erasable pen (or similar), Small sharp scissors, thimble,

small fine quilting needle, embroidery needle.

Optional: safety pins or basting spray.

If you plan to Quilt As You Go*, you’ll need an 11” square of wadding, and if you’re following the 3 layer QAYG method you’ll need an 11” square of backing fabric.

(*For more information on the QAYG method, please read through Quilt Construction notes)

So let’s begin:

Print out the hive template or


Cut out the template pieces, using a ruler, rotary cutter and mat.

Prepare the pieces

• Pin the paper hive pieces (1-5) number side up, onto the wrong side of the ivory fabric

• Cut out, leaving ¼” margin around each of the paper pieces.

• Turn over the ¼” allowance and tack.

• Pin the side pieces L1-3 and R1-3, to the blue fabric. Cut out, leaving ¼” margin around each piece.

• Turn over ¼” allowance on three sides of these pieces, leaving a raw outer edge.

• Pin pieces L4–5 and R4-5 to the green fabric. Cut out, leaving ¼” margin around each piece.

• Turn over ¼” allowance on three sides of these pieces, again leaving a raw outer edge.

Now you’re already to sew the pieces together.

Working on one row at a time, place side piece (L1) on top of hive piece (1), right sides together.

Using an over stitch, take a “tiny bite” out of the folded edge, and keeping stitches close together, sew along the straight edge.

Line up side piece (L2) on the other side of the hive piece (1), and sew in place.

Repeat for the remaining rows, till you have 5 rows of paper piecing, plus top and bottom.

For the top and bottom pieces fold over and tack just the edge next to the hive.

Place the rows in order, Sew row 1 to row 2, and so on until all the rows are sewn together.

Press and remove the papers.

To make the borders

From the Off-white or Low volume fabric cut:

• 2 – 6 5/8” x 2 ¼”strips (cm)

• 2 – 11” x 2 ¾” strips (cm)

Machine sew the 6 5/8” strips to the sides, then sew the 11”strips to the top and bottom. Press seams.

So now our hive is made, there’s just one more thing this hive needs, to make it a home ….

Embroidery – Using a water erasable pen and a lightbox (or tape to a brightly lit window) trace the little bees, so two of them hover close to the hive, and 2 on the border. Trace the word “Honey” onto the hive, or you could add a name.

• The stripy little bodies of the bees were embroidered using just 2 strands of Anchor Moulin in yellow and brown. Sew short lines of chain stitch across the bees body or use satin, or stem stitch.

• To make the little wings, fusible webbing or applique glue holds tiny fabric wings in place, before sewing a line of backstitch using silver thread to hold them firmly in place.

• Alternatively back stitch the wing outline using a dark grey or taupe thread.

• Two French knots form the antennae. While a curvy flight path is marked out in running stitch, using dark grey thread.

• Finally, the word Honey is sewn using tiny backstitches in taupe coloured thread.

Well done! Your block is now complete!

If you choose you can continue and Quilt your block as you go, follow steps below.

Quilting options

If using the Quilt As You Go (QAYG) method

• Layer your block, using an 11” square of cotton wadding and an 11” square of backing fabric, if following the 3 layer sandwich method 2.

• For the 3 layer sandwich, also leave a small margin un-quilted inside the 10” design window, to make it easier to peel back the layers when joining blocks.

• For more information on both QAYG methods, please see Quilt Construction notes.

Secure the layers using safety pins, or your preferred method of basting.Now you’re ready to quilt, thread a small fine quilting needle with Gutermann Sulky cotton 30wt. This is a thicker thread than used for piecing.

Quilt 1/8” inside the hive, closely following the outline of the hive

In preparation for joining Sampler block to Irish Chain blocks, trim a sliver of each side of the Sampler square, till it measures 10.5” square, to match the other blocks.

Congratulations! Block 6 – From our little hive to yours is complete!

We’d love to see the beautiful Sampler blocks you make, so please do post them on Instagram using the hashtag – #SweetestThingsSampler.

Till next time, from our little hive to yours,

Happy sewing x X

Dawn – Honeybee Cloths

2018-07-19T19:36:00Z 2018-07-19T19:38:00Z

Flying pinwheels

Hope you’re having a lovely summertime – It’s been quite a breezy one here, just the weather for spinning pinwheels! Our fourth block before piecing and quilting is one of my favourites, it reminds me of happy seaside holidays – pinwheels spinning in the sea breeze, bright and colourful in the sunshine.

In total 4 pinwheels are needed for our Skinny Dippin’ Quilt, each one is made up from 4 very easy to make “ flying geese” units and 4 plain rectangles.

Taking a little extra care early on to cut out pieces to precise measurements, and checking a ¼” seam allowance is used when joining pieces together, makes it easier to match the centre points of the pinwheel, when it comes to joining the units together.

In the completed quilt the pinwheels can be used in the side borders, or even an extra row if you’d like to make a longer Skinny Dippin’ Quilt.

Full instructions for making Flying Pinwheels here.

Happy sewing x

ps. the little pinwheel pictured sunning itself in the title pic, is made from Fast2Fuse, using a super-duper tutorial by Destri which can be found here 🙂
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Bright and breezy buntings

June is here! So it’s time for the second block in our Skinny dippin’ Quilt-along! June’s block is bright and breezy bunting on a summery aqua sky. If you missed the first block to make a neat little row of beach huts, you can still find it here🙂

In total you’ll need 4 rows of bunting, these can be made quickly and easily either using a folded “prairie point” technique or machine pieced method. The machine pieced method uses less material, while prairie points require less sewing, and have a dimensional element to them. If you have any left over charm pack squares these are perfect for either method.

So bring on the bunting!

For the folded “prairie point” bunting you’ll need:

5 – 5” x WOF strips – or 40 charm pack squares

4 – 3½” (11.5cm) x WOF light aqua solid

4 – 2″ (5cm) x WOF light aqua solid

This is enough to make 4 strips of bunting. Each bunting strip will run across the width of the quilt, with other blocks in the Quilt-along eventually to be sewn inbetween the bunting strips.

You’ll find full instructions how to make the prairie point bunting here.

Lewis & Irene’s Coastal “In the Sea” is a really versatile print – lots of variety! There’s little seahorses, crabs, shoals of fish and seaweed which means that different parts of the design can be used to good effect. The bunting units come together very quickly too – they’re such fun to make !

Once you have a pile of points, you simply slot each folded prairie point into the previous one, pin to hold in place, and sew. In no time you have several rows of bunting!

If you’re making the machine pieced bunting you’ll need:

10 – 5” squares in selection prints

40 – 3 ½” x “ light aqua (Moda Bella Solids – Ruby Ice 9900 169)

4 – 2 ½ ” x WOF white cotton (for bunting string)

Just as for the previous technique this makes 4 rows of bunting. Though with this method there’s room for one extra bunting triangle per row.

There’s a little more cutting and sewing than the prairie points method, as you slice the squares diagonally from corner to corner, and trim a corner from the rectangle, but once the cutting out’s been done, it’s simply a matter of chain piecing and joining –

Full instructions to make Machine pieced bunting here

Whichever method you use, we’d love to see your bunting blocks. Please feel free to post your pics to our Honeybee Cloths Facebook page.

Also remember to “like and share” on Facebook or if your not on Facebook leave us a comment below, and you’ll be entered into our draw to win a Coastal Skinny Quarter bundle.

The next block will be here in one months time, so till then happy sewing x
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Let’s go skinny dippin’

Summer is nearly here – so it seems like a good time for some “skinny dipping sewing”! Each row or strip in the 4 month Quilt-along measures 36″ or 90cm wide. So by the end of the Quilt-along, the strips can be sewn together to make a strippy quilt. There’ll be opportunity to do applique and folded patchwork too.

The first block in the Skinny Dipping Quilt-along is so easy – the beach hut unit is very quick to make. You’ll find full instructions here. But here is the shortened version….

Sew the beach hut units together and before you know it you’ll have a neat row of sweet little beach huts!

Lewis & Irene’s Waves print runs across the width of the fabric, from selvedge to selvedge. Cutting it as a Skinny Quarter (25cm x 110cm) makes it perfect for the waves behind the beach huts. It comes in three colourways too, so as well as the white waves version above, we made a Sea blue strip and an aqua version too…

Once your strip of neat little beach huts is complete, applique some bunting, using bondaweb and running stitch to outline the string of bunting. Perhaps machine sew the outline of a plank door and add a little button for the door handle. Or personalise your beach huts – the world’s your oyster!

We’d love to see your beach huts, so please feel free to share them on Honeybee Cloths Facebook page. Also remember to “like and share” on Facebook or if your not on Facebook leave us a comment below, and you’ll be entered into our draw to win a Coastal Skinny Quarter bundle.

The next block will be here on 1st June, so till then happy sewing x
2015-05-01T11:45:00Z 2015-05-01T11:45:00Z