The Honeycomb or Hexagon Patchwork pattern is aptly named. It is made of hexagon patches that when put together resemble a honeycomb.
The following information on this type of patchwork is from The Dictionary of Needlework: An Encyclopedia of Artistic, Plain and Fancy Needlework, 1887, by S.F.A. Caulfeild and Blanche C. Saward. It has been edited for use on this site.
This pattern, known by these names, is one commonly used in
Patchwork, as it is easily executed, produces many varieties of device,
according to the arrangement of the colors, and is a shape into which most remnants of silk or cretonne may be cut.
To make as shown in the illustration No. 1 below: Cut out a number of Hexagons and make each of their six sides three-quarters of an inch in length. Take a dark-colored patch, and sew round it six light patches. These should agree in their shades of color, but need not as to pattern. Into the angles formed on the outside of these light Hexagons sew dark-colored patches, and continue to work so as to give the appearance of a dark patch surrounded by a set of light patches.
Variation No. 2. Another variety of the Honeycomb
or Hexagon Patchwork pattern is made with Hexagons, and arranged to
form light-colored stars upon a dark velvet ground. It is useful when
only a few, but good, pieces of brocade or satin are available, and make
handsome sofa cushions or banner screens. The Hexagons are all the same
size, and should be three-quarters of an inch upon each side.
To make: Cut out a number of Hexagons in deep maroon velvet or dark peacock-blue velvet, to form the ground; then take the satin scraps, and from them cut out the same sized Hexagons. Pick up one of these, and surround it with six other pieces, arranged as follows: Should the center piece be pale blue, surround it with old gold; should it be crimson, with yellow-pink; should it be lavender, with purple; should it be yellow, with chestnut.
Make a set of these stars, and then reverse the colors, putting the center color as the outside color. Arrange as follows: Sew on two rows of the ground, and for the third row sew on the stars already made, and put one of the ground-colored Hexagons between each star; for the next two rows, only use the ground-colored patches, and then recommence the stars. Arrange these to contrast with those first placed, and to come between them, and not directly underneath.
Variation No. 3. In this variety of the Honeycomb or Hexagon Patchwork pattern it is intended to produce the appearance of Raised Work without the stuffing.
To work: All the pieces are made of equal-sided Hexagons, three-quarters of an inch to every side. Cut out a number of Hexagons, all in one light color, and of the same material – these should be either of French grey, maize, or sky blue – then cut out a number of Hexagons in dark maroon velvet, and a few in brocaded silks, either pale blue, green, chocolate, flame color, or peach. If brocade cannot be procured for these last pieces, work each with a small flower in silks, and in Satin Stitch.
Arrange as follows: Surround each brocaded Hexagon with six dark velvet ones, and make them all up in this way. Then stitch all round these a row of the light silk patches, so that every dark section is separated from its corresponding section with a border of light silk.
Finish this pattern with a straight border worked with flowers, and a ball fringe.
The Last and Best Book of Art Needlework
Over 100 pages of authentic Victorian instructions and patterns from 1895!
Sign up for VEAC! Everything you wanted to know about Victorian embroidery, needlework, crafts and more!
Priscilla Bead Work Book
Make Beautiful Victorian Beaded Purses, Jewelry & Accessories - Starting