Monday, October 24, 2011

How to Paper Piece - Part 3

I know, it's been a while between my How to Paper Piece posts.  Here I talk about the tools you'll need to paper piece and here I talk about some good books and patterns.

First you want to set your stitch length to 1.5.  You want to reduce the stitch length and increase the number of stitches per inch.  Why?  This perforates the paper a lot to make it easier to tear away after you're done.  It also creates more stitches so that a shorter length comes undone when moving and tearing the paper that you'll see we'll have to do.  I would also recommend using a 90/14 needle as it will punch a bigger hole in the paper, also making removal easier.

Step 1 - Place your piece for the #1, RIGHT SIDE UP on the BACK OF THE PAPER PATTERN.  Your piece should overlap all sides by at least 1/4".  I will double check this by holding the fabric in place and lifting up the paper and looking through the paper to the fabric to ensure all sides are covered.  Once in place, pin your #1 to the paper with the pin PARALLEL to the line connecting #1 and #1.

Step 2 - Place a piece of cardboard or thin plastic on the line connecting #1 and #2.

Step 3 - Fold the paper back on to the cardboard/plastic. Folding the paper down has two benefits, it extends the line to show you where to sew beyond the actual line and it weakens the paper to also make it easier to tear off after the block is finished.

Step 4 - Place your Add-a-Quarter ruler against the cardboard and folded paper and cut.  You just created your 1/4" seam!

Step 5 - Place piece #2 on top of piece #1 RIGHT SIDE DOWN.  (All pieces will be placed right side down from now on.)  Place it on the 1/4" steam that you created in the previous step.  Place a pin parallel to the line that you will sew.

Step 6 - Sew on the line between #1 and #2.  Begin sewing a little more than 1/4" from the start of the line and finish a little more than 1/4" after the line. (see below)

Step 7 - Iron your piece open.  The paper piecing will determine where you iron towards.  If you know that you will be ironing towards a lighter fabric, place that lighter fabric just slightly beyond the darker one before sewing so that it doesn't show through when you iron it open.

Step 8 - Continue repeating steps 2-7 for each piece until you finish your block!

Note: This block is from the Carol Doak Yahoo Group's Simply Radiant Star BOM. 

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