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Topic: My First Paper Piecing and Question  (Read 1075 times)
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Not a Knitter
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« on: April 22, 2007 07:48:44 PM »

My mother threw down the gauntlet last week and said she doesn't think I have the patience for paper piecing. Of course, this made me say "I'll show her."

I studied several tutorials on the Web and here's my first 6-inch square:

My first couple of attempts failed because, well, I was impatient and didn't take my time, but once I got into the flow it went really well and was a lot of fun. However, since I was just doing this one to get the basic technique down I didn't pay a bit of attention to the grain of the fabric, thus, this one is totally wonky if you stretch it any direction. Which brings me to my question:

It seems to me the best course of action in the future is to iron on a light interface to my fabric beforehand next time so that I don't have to worry about the grain, etc. Has anyone else done this when working with paper piecing. How did it turn out? Did it make things too bulky?


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« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2007 09:46:26 PM »

I think it looks beautiful.  Smiley I don't know a thing about paper piecing though.

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« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2007 12:17:05 AM »

Well, it depends on what you are using it for. If you want to make a quilt, it will be too thick to be comfortable with all the interfacing. Plus, I'm sure it will be a nightmare to quilt.  If you want to use just the block itself in a frame, I don't see anything wrong with it. 

Remember to iron straight down & not back & forth (like for clothes). This will reduce the amount of streching. Also, letting the blocks feed through the machine themselves (with out holding or pushing them) reduces the strech/distortion.

Oh, I thought of something else... If you want to make a quilt out of a bunch of PP blocks, you can always sew them together with the paper still on so you don't distort the block. I've been thinking of getting that wash away paper which would be great of doing this.... although that paper seems quite expensive.

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« Last Edit: April 23, 2007 02:43:29 AM by mini » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2007 05:11:40 AM »

The block is awesome!  I also know very little about paper piecing, but it seems like you could starch the fabric while you are sewing to minimize stretch.  Once the blocks are set together, especially if you use sashing cut on grain, I don't think the strechiness will matter too much, and then you can rinse the starch out.


If you are working on (or thinking about starting) a postage stamp quilt with 1.5" squares, I have scraps and squares to give away.  PM me if you're interested.
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2007 07:51:02 PM »

This is gorgeous!

I'm pretty sure you don't need to worry about the direction of the fabrics in paper piecing. Just be gentle with the blocks and they won't stretch much.

You can do the block on a muslin foundation.  I did this once according to some directions for a string quilt in Quiltmaker Magazine. 

I think the place where you really need the patience with foundation piecing is if you are making a big pile of blocks.  You have to do each block individually instead of like an assembly line in regular machine piecing, so it feels like it takes forever.

« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2007 11:53:39 PM »

Actually, now that IamSusie mentions it, I have to change my mind... I think sew-in interfacing could be OK. It would be like muslin...
Originally, I was thinking of "steam a seam"... "Steam a seam" or other "steam on" interfacing could be a bit tough to quilt through...

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