06 August 2013

More lessons to learn

I've been "talking" so much and showing so many lovely pictures it might have escaped your attention that I have up until now not created one single sewn quilt piece. It did to me so I set about to create my first piece. I wonder if these are called "blocks" even though they are small??? A question for another day

This little prepared piece looks so sweet and innocent sitting on the table but lurking behind it were A LOT of lessons.... (see how raggedy the edges look? hehe)

This was the first lesson (actually lesson 4 in the process). DO NOT push the paper clips all the way onto the pattern piece. Why, you ask?Well, first (lesson 4) the thread will catch on the hook of the paper clip. Next (lesson 5) when you try to pull the paperclip off, the blunt end of the hook will want to pull the fabric you JUST SEWED off the pattern piece.

Lesson 6 - The are 2 ends to a paper clip, one longer than the other. Always have the LONG end of the paper clip on the fabric side and the short end on the plastic side facing you. Why, you ask? The short side will not have to be pushed on so far but the long end can provide a great grip helping it stay in place while sewing. I did find it easier to remove the paper clip that was between what was sewn and what I was sewing.  I found the paper clip hanging out the right side got in the way of my stitching. And now on the stitch.

I started the tacking process on the lower right side. I took stiff thread in white (easier to thread with stiff thread and the color will not be confused with the whipstitched seams later on)  I took 2 back stitches.

I rotated the piece clockwise and tacked the next corner with 2 back stitches. You see how the thread went over the paper clip. On this one I still sometimes caught the thread while trying to remove it but even more frustrating was the paper clip was getting in my way while I was trying to get the corner held tightly with my left thumb nail.

I continued around the piece until I had all four corners

I tied off at the fourth corner. I did not stitch back to the beginning (why do it). All four corners were secured. It saved me another stitch to make and later remove and it saved me thread.

Here are the first 2 actual pieces I stitched on to the plastic piece. They look so innocent but it probably took me a half hour to do them. Later that night, while watching Netflix, I stitched a bunch of them lickity-split!! Oh no, my age is showing!!!!


  1. Congratulations to your first basted pieces. I guess we've all been through the troubles you describe, before basting became easier and easier. My epiphany (if you want to call it such) was the suggestion to use Clover Wonder Clips to hold the fabric to the shape. Sure, this is specialist equipment, but I wouldn't give them up for anything, since they are also great for holding the pieces together during the whipstitching process.
    In the case of the pattern you are working, a unit consisting of two squares and two diamonds would be considered a block :D Happy sewing!

  2. Yikes! There's a lot to this piecing project... guess by the time you get to your 100th piece it will be second nature! Definitely patience work, I'm thinking...

  3. You are inspiring me to get out my little bag of hexagons for travel.

  4. Glad you are learning! Everyone needs to get into a personal rhythm with basting and stitching, and it usually takes some trial and error. Remember though, you don't need to remove the basting stitches! Leave them in, they will help your seams stay flat when you layer and baste the quilt.

  5. I have been learning some of the same things as I have been starting my own EPP project. I only paperclip two sides of my diamonds and remove the paperclips as I go around the diamond.


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