Monday, July 25, 2022

Happy hexie flower mug rugs

Hi! It would seem that hexies are back into my life. They are very meditative to prepare and to stitch together (i.e. relatively mindless but enjoyable for a short time). 

Happy Purple & Spots

July's colour for the 2022 Table Scraps challenge is purple and the theme is circles, spots and dots. Until last year I had very few fabrics with spots but because of a wonderful gift of scraps, I now have tons.😊

Two English paper pieced, appliquéd, purple & spots mug rugs

As soon as I saw the July theme of spots, I knew that I had the perfect scraps to English paper piece (EPP) some hexies. I also had some gorgeous purple hand-dyed fabrics in my scrap bin. This project was meant to be!

Making the Mug Rug

My first try at stitching the hexies onto the background and batting was a dud since I used free motion quilting (FMQ). It was a mess. I don't often take things apart, but I did this time. I then took my time, pinned down my hexies and very carefully used the walking foot to stitch on the outside of the hexie flower. If you enlarge the picture below you can see puncture marks of very crooked stitch lines around the edges of the flower, 

Second attempt at appliquéing the hexie flower

Using a walking foot

Hexie flower stitched down

The next step was to make the mug rug. I had actually planned ahead a little bit and knew that I wanted an envelope or pillowcase type finish. The background piece was twice the length of the mug rug so that it could be used for the background. Below you see that the edges are stitched on two sides of the fabric and the one side is the fold. I left one side open so that I could flip the front out.

Leaving one side open
I learned a couple of lessons during the making of the first mug rug that I was able to apply to the second one (see below). 

Stitching the envelope of the second mug rug

Stitched on two sides, ready to be turned inside-out.

Flipped over through the open side

I found that the trickiest part was closing up the open side. Again, I learned a couple of things with the first one that I was able to put into practice on the second.

Over-stitching around the four edges of the background

Two Finished Mug Rugs

First happy hexie flower mug rug

Second happy hexie flower mug rug

Mug rugs in the clover

Mug rugs on a very large Hosta :-)

More Mug Rugs in progress

A third mug rug appliquéd and stitched by hand (WIP)

Last hexie mug rug (WIP)

What I learned
  • My most important lesson learned is to attach a hexie flower to the background using a walking foot, not FMQ. Lines need to be straight. With all of the layers of fabric, it's a perfect job for the walking foot.
  • It was very useful to make one mug rug at a time. I was able to use a couple of tricks that I learned from my first try:
    • It was easier to make the batting a ¼" smaller than the background, and then use the outside of the batting as a guide to stitch around the edges.
    • When leaving an opening to turn the mug rug over, it's best if the opening is a smaller opening than a full side. It was very easy once right-side out, to stitch up the open portion when a side had been partially stitched on both ends.
  • You may have noticed that none of my hexie flower mug rugs are centered. I was hoping that I would get better at that as I made more but I seem to have regressed, so my advice is to make it obviously not centered so that it looks like a design feature. 😊

Related links
Linking parties
I'll be linking up to many fun linking parties, including Muv's Free Motion Mavericks which is still on until tomorrow; as well as Joyful Quilter's 2022 Table Scraps Challenge, as soon as the party opens. Off The Wall Friday, Monday Making, Design Wall Monday, Patchwork & QuiltsSlow Sunday Stitching, Beauty Pageant, Oh Scrap!, Put Your Foot Down, Needle & Thread Thursday, Midweek Maker

Project details

Happy hexie flower mug rugs 
4¾" x 4½" and 4½" x 4½"
Materials: commercial scraps, hand-dyed background fabric, ¾" English paper pieced hexies
Techniques: English paper piecing, appliqué, quilting with walking foot.


  1. Great idea for hexies, Andree!!! Cute mug rugs!!! I read all your "What I learned" comments with great interest!

    1. Thanks so much Nancy. It's fun when I can learn from my work and of course writing it down means that I may remember...or more importantly, I'll be able to find it if I re-read the post :-)

  2. I love your hexie mug rugs and thank you so much for sharing what you learned. I hope to tackle one of these one day when I am less intimidated. Happy quilting.

    1. Thanks so much Melisa. They were a lot of fun. The hand stitched ones are coming along slowly. Hope you get to make some :-)

  3. Your mug rugs are wonderful and love that you passed along the tips you leaned.

    1. Thank your Deb. There is always so much to learn I make it up as I go!

  4. These little mug rugs are so cute! I love the polka dot fabric and orange & purple are a favorite color combination.

    1. Thank you Michelle, they were a lot of fun to make and those are great colour combinations.

  5. Your new coasters put a smile on my face, Andree! If you had waited to finish up the extras, you would be set for August's TABLE SCRAPS Challenge, too. Angela called for ORANGE... Yay!!

    1. Thanks Joyful :-) That could be a good idea if I don't have time to make anything else. I am excited about the embroidery prompt though, so will probably put in a little bit of orange and lots of embroidery....we'll see :-)

  6. You nailed it - both purple and spots.

    1. Thanks Karen - not always easy but this one was :-)

  7. Hello Andrée, love the picture with the hosta!


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