If you love the ease of paper piecing and the accurate results you get, but don’t enjoy picking out all the paper pieces in the end, don’t despair. I came across a video that I want to share with you. It explains a method that eliminates that last step. It still uses paper. You just don’t sew through it. Instead of sewing over the printed line, you fold the paper back on the line and sew next to the line. Another improvement is that instead of regular paper that you would secure with either a pin or a dab of washable glue, the video shows to use freezer paper that can be pressed to the fabric to secure it. It all looks so easy. I will definitely give this a try in the future. If you have already tried this method, I would love to see your comments on how you like it.
Here is the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mt5NvlBhAoM
Have fun and enjoy your weekend.
In February I mentioned that I planned to design and make a paper pieced quilt. I now want to show you my progress and pass on some things I have learned (sometimes the hard way). I started by drawing the center block in Electric Quilt 7 (EQ). I love EQ and have been using it for many years and have designed a whole lot of quilts in it, but very few paper pieced ones. I started with the center block and slowly added surrounding blocks. When I did not like a block, I just kept drawing a different one until I came up with one that pleased me more. I only had to design a quarter of the whole quilt as it consists of identical quadrants, like a large 4-patch. Once I had a quilt that I liked I then printed it out and EQ added the seam allowances where required and I was able to start piecing. At first I printed on copy paper, but found it stiff and hard to pick out. So I switched to ordinary tracing paper. I had a couple of tablets that I had bought at Michael’s for just a few dollars each and they worked great.
Here is the first block:
A block can be divided into several segments:
A1, A2, and A3 belong to one segment. B1, B2, and B3 are also one segment and C1 and C2 are another segment.
The center consists of 4 copies of Block 1:
What I learned so far.
- If you are new to paper piecing, watch some videos on YouTube. There are lots of them.
- It is important to reduce the stitch length as it is easier to rip the paper out when it is time to remove it. The default stitch length on my machine is 2.5 and I lowered it to 1.8. You can go even lower than that, but be aware that if you ever have to remove some stitches it is almost impossible to do so.
- Organize. Stack the pieces that belong together in neat little piles together with their paper templates.
Well, this is not so tidy, but they are stacked together.
- Work on one block at a time so you don’t mix up the pieces of different blocks.
- When stitching over a line, follow that line exactly to make sure you end up with the correct size block.
- Press carefully so the seams are as flat as possible.
- When sewing the segments together, I first fold back the paper seam allowances or cut them off as they are very difficult to remove after the segments are sewn together.
- Do not remove the outside paper and fabric seam allowances of the blocks just yet. All the blocks should measure 6 1/2″ square before you sew them together so an extra bit of fabric may come in handy if you have to fudge the size of the blocks somewhat.
The fabric I used is Happy Hour, my daughter’s latest line of fabric by Timeless Treasures. I love it and I guess I am not the only one as Cozy Quilt Shop quickly sold out of most of the colors I needed. I have been assured that more is on the way.
I’ll post pictures of more blocks when I get them done.
Here are a couple of links to YouTube videos.
First one is on mitered borders by Susan Claire – the GourmetQuilter.
The Youtube link is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9zOZNoSdW_U
The next one is on attaching binding with a flange. This one is by Aunt Marti from 52 Quilts. YouTube link is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8N6nv90H2c
I may have shown this method in the past, but it is an excellent method that is worth repeating. Not only does it look great, but it is done completely by machine and does not involve hand stitching.
And last but not least a picture of one of my older designs that my daughter, Daniela of Cozy Quilt resurrected with new fabric and updated with new yardage requirements if you wish to cut it with the Accuquilt Go cutter.
Have a great weekend everyone.