Archive for the ‘On the Road’ Category

Let’s Play with the Lady of the Lake block!

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

This blog is full of ideas for using the Lady of the Lake block with Paris Flight (January  block) and Jim Dandy (March block).  Let the visual parade begin.

This is my layout for my row quilt showing the Lady of the Lake block row dropped in.  I plan to put up the foundation pattern for the triangle spacer rows this summer.  keep an eye out on the blog/website for that to appear on the 2015 O.T.R. page.

 So what if I just wanted to make my row quilt using the three blocks released.  Here is one setting I might consider.

Or maybe this.  I love the secondary pattern of the Jim Dandy block so might want to repeat that block in side by side rows for it.

Or how about just Lady of the Lake (center) and Jim Dandy (borders) in a quilt.   Almost looks like a flower bed with lattice around it.

But it’s this checkerboard setting that has my head imagining another project.

I am loving the secondary “circles” that are formed when these two blocks meet.

Short and sweet post.

Remember all the templates and EPP papers for the blocks, Paris Flight, Jim Dandy and Lady of the Lake PLUS Castle Wall are currently on sale on my shore page until midnight on Sunday, May 10th.

Happy Mother’s Day to all….I am taking the weekend off myself and going to enjoy doing a whole lot of reading in the gardens and laughing with friends and family.

Catch you all on Monday with a blog post and heads up a giveaway!

MickeySignature

 

 

Lady of the Lake – How to Part #2

Tuesday, May 5th, 2015

WARNING THIS BLOG IS VERY PICTURE HEAVY FOR THOSE DOWNLOADING ON A MOBILE DEVICE

Ok let’s tackle the rest of the block today.  Here is the breakdown of the block again in sections.  We tackled the B-A-Br (r meaning reverse) section last blog, and you will need 4 of those units for this block.

LadyoftheLake-units

Now let’s tackle the center  C-E-F-E-C section.  There is just one of these and since there are only single seam sewing there are no roundabouts to do.  The hardest part of this section are the slight curves in the seams joining E & F but you tackled those in the first sections so I am sure you are a pro by now.

LOTLsecA

The next section is the D-C-D-E section.  Two units to sew.  Everything thing gets sewn to E.  Start on either D, continue to C and finish with D.

LOTLsecB

Remember the trick to nice tight intersections and sharp points is the “roundabout move”.  This has been covered at length in previous blocks (Castle Wall, Paris Flight) so I won’t go back over it here, you can easily refer back to the blogs for a refresher.  But quickly a roundabout is all about passing your needle thru TWO pieces of fabric at a time and making a continuous stitch thru an intersection pulling all the intersecting fabrics together.  An example of this sequence if you started with the right side D piece in the image below, the roundabout would be finish with a backstitch at the end of D/E.  Pass thru D/C, then C/E, back to D/E and finish with D/C again.  Make a back stich and continue sewing C to E.

LOTLsecB.1

All units done.

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Now let’s join the two D-E-C-D units to the center unit of C-E-F-E-C.

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Because this entire length of seam is a curve you must pin.   I pin vertically at each end, at each intersection and then twice, splitting the length, in each D section.   Don’t forget your roundabouts at those two center intersections.

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Now on to the sewing the four corner units.  Yes you can sew these in one big circle around the block.  But that’s a lot of thread to load into your needle.  Too much thread to have a successful and zen sewing time.  So I have decided to just sew each seam individually as I would if I was at my sewing machine.
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Pin your ends and intersections.  Since there is no curve you shouldn’t need to pin your lengths in the B/Br edges.  But if you feel you need to then by all means do.

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The red circles indicate the roundabouts.

LadyoftheLakeFinalRoundabouts1

Two more corner units to go!

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And now when joining these units note that there will be NEW roundabouts as indicated by the green circles at the beginning and end of the block.  While some might think these are overkill I feel that in the long run they will make for crisper block when sewing rows together.   And what the heck it’s not like you aren’t a pro at these now to…so sew the roundabouts I say!

LadyoftheLakeFinalRoundabouts2

Ta-Da!  Your Lady of the Lake block is done!

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So as mentioned before, all my blocks will have red fabric in the area (piece D) indicated as a way of pulling my scrappy row by row quilt together.

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and I have started kitting the remainder of my blocks for the next two months of travel.

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Join me tomorrow for some inspiration quilt settings with the Lady of the Lake , Paris Flight, and Jim Dandy blocks!

On the homefront I will be shoving off to my guild visit with the Gems of the Prairie in Peoria, IL tomorrow morning.   This being said any orders that come in for templates by midnight tonight I will get them in the mail before I shove off…if not orders won’t go out until Monday, May 11th.

Off to finish packing!

MickeySignature

 

Lady of the Lake Block – How to Part #1

Sunday, May 3rd, 2015

WARNING THIS BLOG IS VERY PICTURE HEAVY FOR THOSE DOWNLOADING ON A MOBILE DEVICE

Let’s begin!  As I said previously this block really has intriqued me.  Don’t let the slightly curved seams scare you.  Hand piecing makes that a breeze and the design elements that they give are awesome.

I am not going to go over marking your fabrics using the acrylic templates as that has been covered already under the general info blogs at the beginning of the year and a very detailed blog here (yes it is for the Castle Wall block but the same info applies to all blocks).

Here are the templates.  There are six shapes in the Lady of the Lake Block.

Fabrics chosen for the block.  Remember what is tying together all my block in my 2015 On The Road Project is the use of red in each and every one.

I am not going to go over marking your fabrics using the acrylic templates as that has been covered already under the general info blogs at the beginning of the year and a very detailed blog here (yes it is for the Castle Wall block but the same info applies to all blocks).  But I will do a few quick pics to help refresh/guide an newcomers…and we have many!

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Ok it’s time to sew!.

Here is an orientation guideline for the templates.  NOTE: Piece B is used flipped over (in reverse) for half the pieces in the block.

You can find a PDF of this orientation guide on the 2015. O.T.R page under the Lady of the Lake Block.

Be sure to keep checking this page periodically for useful/information PDFs.

Let’s break down this block into sections.  There are three.

Br-A-B (4 units)

D-E-D-C (2 units)

C-E-F-E-C (1 unit)

Let’s start with the Br-A-B section.  There isn’t any continuous line sewing in this unit so it will be quick seams.  But there are slight curves, so let’s tackle how to make those happen.

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The pinning for these curved pieces is a bit different than what we have done before in the Castle Wall, Paris Flight and Jim Dandy blocks.   The templates have the corners knocked off on the points so that lining things up will be easier.   You want to line up each corner edge of B to the corresponding edge of A.

MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE CORRECT B or Br PIECE. 

In fact I suggest laying out your pieces in front of you orientating them correctly before you pick them up to sew.

I pin in a vertical manner as shown  in the seam allowance using an ultra fine pins on each edge.  Then I gently ease in the curve of each piece to each other and put a third pin vertically directly thru the center.   You may wish to check that your seam lines line up with a quick needle check before you begin sewing.  But if you take care marking and cutting your pieces you will find that a little extra time/care in doing so makes life sweeter when sewing.

Now you can begin to sew

IMPORTANT!   Sew two or three threads above your drawn line!

This compensates for the fact that getting into the exact edge of the template with your marking pen/pencil is

nearly impossible.   TRUST ME this is how you end up with a 10.5″ block (unfinished) and not a 10.25″ or smaller block at the end.

Make a backstitch to start off.

And backstitch every inch as you are sewing and always finish a line with a backstitch even if you are going on to another piece without knotting off.

Running stitch.    Remove pin when you reach it with your needle and thread.

Sew to the end of the seam, back stitch and knot off.

Now in order for the curved seam to lay flat we need to make some cuts into the seam allowance.

Three small cuts will do it. Be sure to leave several threads between the end of you snip and the sewn seam.

Viola!  a lovely flat gently curved seam!  SEW EASY to accomplish with hand piecing!

Now continue on with the other side (Br) and then finish up the remaining three Br-A-B units.

Tomorrow we tackle the rest of the block.

’til then,

MickeySignature

2015 On The Road Project – Block Three

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

Releasing May’s block just a few hours early…I’m sleeping in tomorrow!

  LADY OF THE LAKE 

is this block name!

LadyoftheLakeBlockImage

I am truly loving this block so much that I am considering a side project just with this block in it.   Those gentle curves just make my hand piecing heart pitter-patter.

If you following on facebook you know I have been teasing the last few days with fun pics such as this.    Not giving to much away…lol. Blog 05.0102

Wait to you see some of the secondary designs I will be sharing on Tuesday.

As you can see by the image above I am placing the red in the curved inner triangles on each and every one of my blocks in my quilt.   Remember the use of red in each block is what I am using to unite all my blocks in my scrappy row quilt.

 

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Six templates for this block makes it one of the more complex in my project.   But it is good to challenge ourselves sometimes and push our skill set further.  These curves make this block rock in design and are so easy to sew by hand vs. machine.

      I have finished block one for my quilt while taking pictures for the step by step instructional blog that will post on Sunday.

      And I will also have a blog on Tuesday showing you what row I plan to use my block in and several other layout options for you to consider in your project.

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And of course just as I was almost done making this first block the lightbulb went off in my head about making a small portable design wall so that I can obtain great lighting for photography of the block(s) at any time.  So honestly the blog pics in Sunday’s how to will be much better by the end!

 I do have the Acrylic Template sets, and English Paper Piecing sets (one and six blocks) in the store and you can order now if you wish.

And since this block release coincides with Mother’s Day Month,

I am offering the Acrylic Templates and the Six Block EPP papers set at 20% off from now until midnight on May 10th.  

In fact I am extending this sale to include the Paris Flight, Jim Dandy AND Castle Wall templates/EPP papers!

Karen Kay Buckley Pins SMALLERAnd another new product in the shop is the  new SMALLER version of Karen Kay Buckley’s Perfect Pins.  I am loving working with both sizes in my hand piecing.  This pins are truly perfect to me.

I hope you like this block and will join along with us on my facebook page as blocks are created and posted/shared for all to see.  I just love seeing them all!

Happy May!

MickeySignature

Jim Dandy & Paris Flight – Meet in a Quilt

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015

Today’s blog is filled with ideas for using the Jim Dandy block and Paris Flight block together in a quilt.

JimDandyBlock

I am putting red in the center surrounding triangles in my row of Jim Dandy blocks.  This use of red in each and ever block will be the “tie that binds”all the blocks together in my scrappy row quilt.

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This is where the row of Jim Dandy blocks will be in my quilt.  Remember I am making two rows of Paris Flight blocks, I have one done and will work on the second throughout the year when I have time.  I can pretty much guarantee that all seven of my Jim Dandy blocks for the quilt will be done by the end of March with my travel schedule.  So I will then switch back and make some more Paris Flight. (and Jim Dandy sample blocks for the workshop I will be putting up soon).

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Here is an idea.  You can use my row quilt layout but fill in four rows with Jim Dandy!

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How about a medallion setting using the two blocks?

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Traditional checkerboard setting.

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or a row by row with no breaker rows.   I like the fact that the block edges don’t line up.  I think that makes each row stand out.

I can see this setting done in a cool colors/hot colors palette.

On the “home front”.   I am currently sitting in my hotel room in an iced over Moline, Illinois.  Today is a double lecture day with meetings at 1pm and 7pm.   Right now by the amount of ice on the windows/trees and lack of sunshine I am concerned as to whether I will be able to share my quilts with this wonderful group of quilters.  We have had two lovely days of workshops and would hate to have my stay end without the trunk show.

Time will tell.   Come on sun!   SHINE!

Take Care,

MickeySignature

Jim Dandy Block – How to Part 2

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

WARNING THIS BLOG IS VERY PICTURE HEAVY FOR THOSE DOWNLOADING ON A MOBILE DEVICE

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Today we are going to tackle a corner unit of a Jim Dandy Block.  It is made up of  two A’s ,  one B, and two C’s – with one of them being a reverse of the C unit.

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Here are my pieces ready to go.

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Sew an A to each side of B as indicated by the green lines.

These will be short lines of sewing.

knot off at the end of each line.

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now on to the C & Cr

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The C & Cr pieces can be added to the A-B-A unit with one longer line of sewing.

There will be three Roundabout Moves as indicated by the red circles.

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Start and sew just as you have done before.

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Here is the start of the second Roundabout adding the Cr piece.

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Finishing up the center Roundabout.

Sew to the end of the Cr piece and knot off.

Repeat for the remaining three corner units.  Press each corner unit in the direction that seams fall naturally.

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Now let’s join the corners to the center.

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Sew two opposite corners to the center.

NOTE treat the center point(s) intersection as a Roundabout to obtain a sharp point on both the center square and piece B.

Press seams outward.

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Then finish by sewing the remaining corners to the center following the same course when it comes to intersections/Roundabout Moves.

Ta-Da!  A Jim Dandy Block!

Tomorrow I am planning to share where I am going to use this block in my quilt….and some other ideas.

’til then,

MickeySignature

Jim Dandy Block – How To Part #1

Sunday, March 1st, 2015

WARNING THIS BLOG IS VERY PICTURE HEAVY FOR THOSE DOWNLOADING ON A MOBILE DEVICE

So let’s start to hand sew this fun block shall we?  

I am not going to go over marking your fabrics using the acrylic templates as that has been covered already under the general info blogs at the beginning of the year and a very detailed blog here (yes it is for the Castle Wall block but the same info applies to all blocks).

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Here are the templates.  There are four shapes in the Jim Dandy Block.

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The back of my cut out pieces for my first block.

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And the front.  Take a moment to cut striped or directional fabric so that it appears pleasing to the eye.  These little things go a long way in creating a beautiful quilt.

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Here is an orientation guideline for the templates.  NOTE: Piece C is used flipped over (in reverse) for half the pieces in the block.

You can find a PDF of this orientation guide on the 2015. O.T.R page under the Jim Dandy Block.

Be sure to keep checking this page periodically for useful/information PDFs.

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We are going to start with the center block and four surrounding triangles.

These can be sewn together with one continuous strand of thread so make sure you needle is loaded.

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Place the triangle on top of the square, right sides together, lining up the long edges.

I pin on the drawn line using an ultra fine pin.  Check the back to make sure the pin falls on the drawn line on the square also.

If not unpin and shift the pieces until this happens.  Remember there is always a bit of fudge factor when lining up pieces due to them being hand cut.

Never rely on your edges…always pin and match up your drawn lines.

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IMPORTANT!   Sew two or three threads above your drawn line!

This compensates for the fact that getting into the exact edge of the template with your marking pen/pencil is

nearly impossible.   TRUST ME this is how you end up with a 10.5″ block (unfinished) and not a 10.25″ or smaller block at the end.

Make a backstitch to start off.

And backstitch every inch as you are sewing and always finish a line with a backstitch even if you are going on to another piece without knotting off.

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Running stitch.    Remove pin when you reach it with your needle and thread.

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Finish with a backstitch.

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Now in this center unit there are four intersections that we will preform the Roundabout Move.  This is when you pass your threaded needle thru two pieces at time in a circular fashion at the intersection of joining a new piece.  By performing the Roundabout Move you will have a tighter intersection with no gaps/pin holes and nice crisp points.   Ok…here we go!

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Use a pin to line up the corner of next triangle (#2) to the last corner of the triangle (#1) you just sewed to the square.  Line up your long edges and place your pin on the drawn line.  (don’t forget to check the backside to make sure the pin lines up on the square’s line also).

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Pull your needle thru from Triangle #1 to Triangle #2.    Pull all the was thru with thread.

Then pull needle thru Triangle #2 to Square at the same point of the drawn line (remember just a few threads above it)

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Pull needle and thread all the  way thru.    Then bring needle thru the Square to Triangle #1.

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Side view of the move of the needle from Square to Triangle #1

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And finally repeat the move from Triangle #1 to Triangle #2.   You will ALWAYS end a Roundabout with the same move you started.

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Make a back stitch and sew Triangle #2 to the Square.

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Repeat these steps for Triangle #3  & #4.

End this unit by making a Roundabout Move between Triangle #4 and Triangle #1 and knot off.

Tomorrow we tackle a corner unit.

’til then,

MickeySignature

 

2015 On The Road Project – Block Two

Saturday, February 21st, 2015

EARLY RELEASE OF THE NEXT BLOCK IN MY PROJECT!

A look at my calendar late last week brought to my attention a detail…and important detail…that somehow I didn’t think of when setting up the release date of March 1st for the next block in the One The Road Project.

I won’t be home on March 1st.

And yes I know I can set up a blog post with scheduling to go up at any time I choose.  But to clarify…I won’t be home to press the button to put the acrylic templates/EPP papers in the store.  I won’t do that type of website change on a hotel unsecured internet for obvious reasons.   And more importantly I won’t be home to get your orders out.   And since I won’t be home until late in the day on the 4th this would mean some would be waiting a long time.

So I decided to post the block this weekend on Sunday.

Then today’s plans of trying out our “new to us” cross country skis fell thru due to the bitter cold conditions I thought…I will post the block today!

So here it is!

JIM DANDY is this block name!

JimDandyBlock

Isn’t it grand!

So much potential with that obvious “fussy cut friendly” center and those inset chevrons…no worries with hand piecing!

The dimensional aspects of this block are exciting.

As you can see by the image above I am placing the red in the center triangles on each and every one of my blocks in my quilt.   Remember the use of red in each block is what I am using to unite all my blocks in my scrappy row quilt.

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Jim Dandy Quilt Block

I have finished block one for my quilt while taking pictures for the step by step instructional blog that will appear late next week.  (I need a few days              recovery from this morning’s internet problems/hoop jumping…trust me.)

   And I will also have another blog next week showing you what row I plan to use my block in and several other layout options for you to consider in your             project.  I hope you will check back for that blog as I have been having a lot of fun designing options in Electric Quilt for you.

I do have the Acrylic Template sets, and English Paper Piecing sets (one and six blocks) in the store and you can order now if you wish.  I will process  all orders received by 5pm CST tomorrow (Sunday-Feb 22nd)  for shipping on Monday but then I am out the door for two days to a semi-local gig.   I will be back home mid week and will get any other orders out before leaving again a week from today.

So now you see why I decided to push up the release.

JimDandyTemplatesJimDandy EPP 6 blocksJimDandyEPP ONE Block

I hope you like this block and will join along with us on my facebook page as blocks are created and posted/shared for all to see.  And keep making and posting Paris Flight blocks and Castle Wall Blocks….I just love seeing them all!

Enjoy your Saturday,

MickeySignature

2015 On The Road Paris Flight – Hand Piecing the block

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

WARNING THIS BLOG IS VERY PICTURE HEAVY FOR THOSE DOWNLOADING ON A MOBILE DEVICE

It all starts with the block palette.  Remember treat each block as it's own little quilt and play! Stretch your wings and try a new combo of colors to you.  And keep an eye on your textures.

It all starts with the block palette. Remember treat each block as it’s own little quilt and play! Stretch your wings and try a new combo of colors to you. And keep an eye on your textures.

Work this block in quadrants.

Work this block in quadrants.

And each quardrant is split into two halves.

And each quardrant is split into two halves.

These are the templates.  I have left the brown paper on them for this picture so they are easily seen.  The three circled templates will be used in reverse also in this block.

These are the templates. I have left the brown paper on them for this picture so they are easily seen. The three circled templates will be used in reverse also in this block.

 

THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT TIP!

This triangle can make or break you in this design.  You will need 8 of it, 4 right side and 4 reverse.  The tip I have for you is to mark the outside edge of the template for orientation.   This is like marking the outside edge of your papers for EPP.   I use this ruler tape.  But you can mark it with anything...even a permanent marker.  Just mark it!

This triangle can make or break you in this design. You will need 8 of it, 4 right side and 4 reverse. The tip I have for you is to mark the outside edge of the template for orientation. This is like marking the outside edge of your papers for EPP. I use this ruler tape. But you can mark it with anything…even a permanent marker. Just mark it!

Here it is marked.

Here it is marked.

 

Pretend this paper is your fabric.  After you trace the template, draw a "X" or two...or three in the seam allowance to indicate that this is the outside edge.  Trust me this will be a great help when sewing together!

Pretend this paper is your fabric. After you trace the template, draw a “X” or two…or three in the seam allowance to indicate that this is the outside edge. Trust me this will be a great help when sewing together!

 

For information on marking pens and tips on marking (freezer paper stabilization) please see my blog post linked here

So now go trace your templates on your fabrics and cut out your pieces.

 

Here is my block ready to be sewn.  I lay out every block just to make sure I haven't reversed, or forgotten to reverse, anything.  And to make sure that I like my fabric choices.  Things can look differently when the fabric is cut to the scale of the block vs. the "blob" you pulled when putting together your palette.

Here is my block ready to be sewn. I lay out every block just to make sure I haven’t reversed, or forgotten to reverse, anything. And to make sure that I like my fabric choices. Things can look differently when the fabric is cut to the scale of the block vs. the “blob” you pulled when putting together your palette.

Here is our quadrant now marked with piece #'s for easy reference and outside edges on those tricky triangles.

Here is our quadrant now marked with piece #’s for easy reference and outside edges on those tricky triangles.

The arrows show the sewing sequence.  Start with #1 and work to #5 on the upper triangle.  And start at #8 and work to #6 on the lower triangle.  Have you needle loaded with enough thread to sew all the seams.    Now let's tackle the next tip.  The intersections as shown with the red circles.

The arrows show the sewing sequence. Start with #1 and work to #5 on the upper triangle. And start at #8 and work to #6 on the lower triangle. Have you needle loaded with enough thread to sew all the seams.
Now let’s tackle the next tip. The intersections as shown with the red circles.

As detailed as I am being in this post I know that for some this may not register at first.  It’s ok.  We are only human.   Don’t give up.

I am putting a link here for the piecing post I did for the Castle Wall Block back in September.

Since that block is a little less complicated,if the following steps cause you panic, go back and read this blog and then jump back here and reread… sometimes seeing the same thing done two different ways/sequences makes things clearer.

Onward we go!

I am going to tackle the 3-piece half of the quadrant first.  I line up piece #7 on piece #8.  I pin on the line.  Always make sure you drawn inner lines match up by pinning.  Do not count on the accuracy of your cut outer edges.

I am going to tackle the 3-piece half of the quadrant first. I line up piece #7 on piece #8. I pin on the line. Always make sure you drawn inner lines match up by pinning. Do not count on the accuracy of your cut outer edges.
NOTE : I am using glass head pins here so that they can be seen. I still prefer Karen Kay Buckley’s new super fine pins that you see in the Castle Wall blog. I will be adding these pins to the web store next week.

And let's sew.  I sew SLIGHTLY ABOVE MY DRAWN LINE.  This compensates for the actual girth of the drawing of the line.   These templates have a 1/4" seam vs a 3/8" seam.  This makes them usable for hand piecing AND for fussy cutting for EPP.  So remember to sew ABOVE the drawn to compensate.

And let’s sew. I sew SLIGHTLY ABOVE MY DRAWN LINE. This compensates for the actual girth of the drawing of the line. These templates have a 1/4″ seam vs a 3/8″ seam. This makes them usable for hand piecing AND for fussy cutting for EPP. So remember to sew ABOVE the drawn to compensate.
Backstich at your beginning. Make a small running stitch. I backstitch every inch on the pieces in this block and always finish with a backstitch before I join the next piece. Here we go….ready to CIRCLE AN INTESECTION?

 

And now you are at your first intersection.  An intersection is where three or more pieces meet.

The trick in hand sewing to accomplishing nice neat intersections resulting in sharp points and no pin holes is making a circle around each and every on when you reach it.

If you have roundabout traffic stops, or have ever encountered on, it’s like that.  You literally go around in a circle.

At this intersection we are joining Pieces #8-7-6 shown in the diagram above.

OK. somewhere I lost a picture so this direction is just going to be written.

Stab Stitch thru Piece #8 to #7.  Pull your thread thru.

Now pin Piece #6 to the opposite side of #6, right sides together (see next pic).

Stab Stitch thru Piece #8 to #7.  Pull thread thru.

With Piece #6 pinned to #7 stab stitch thru the very point of the drawn line. Pull your thread thru.

Here is the backside of this previous picture showing the stab stitch coming right thru the drawn point.

Here is the backside of this previous picture showing the stab stitch coming right thru the drawn point.

 

  Your needle should now be between Piece #6 and Piece #8.  Continue stab stitching thru TWO pieces of fabric at a time…ie, now go thru 6-8, then 8-7, and finally 7-6 where you will start to sew your second seam along the pins shown in the picture above.

Don’t forget to back stitch and finish off with a knot.

Here is your first sewn triangle.  I will tackle pressing tips once the next triangle is complete.

Here is your first sewn triangle. I will tackle pressing tips once the next triangle is complete.

Now we will tackle Pieces 1-5.   Refer to the graphic above with the green arrow for your sewing sequence.

This is my first seam between Piece #1 & #2

This is my first seam between Piece #1 & #2

from the right side

from the right side stabbing needle thru to prepare for the addition of Piece #3

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Piece #3 pinned in place. I switched to the Karen Kay Buckley pins. And you see I have stabbed thru the point with the needle. My next stitch will be a stab thru #3 to #1, and then #1 thru #2 (again), and finally #2 to #3 exactly where we are in this picture. Doing this may seem tedious but the results are wonderful. Sharp points and no pin holes in your intersections!

Sew your seam!

I've sew piece #3 to #2 and now ready to sew #4 to #3.  When I can I do stack my entire block in order of sewing (see background).  This makes for mindless sewing late at night.

I’ve sew piece #3 to #2 and now ready to sew #4 to #3. When I can I do stack my entire block in order of sewing (see background). This makes for mindless sewing late at night.

Keep sewing until all intersections have been circled and all five pieces of this triangle are together.

Next up ….PRESSING MATTERS!

With this block I have found that pressing the units (ie. triangles) really makes a difference when sewing them together to make the quadrant square.

My tip: PRESS the center triangles seams out on both pieces!  You make think this contradicts the traditional one in and the other out for nestling of seams but with and sewing you have control over those seams and with circling the intersection it really doesn’t matter like in machine piecing.  Press in in this fashion allowed me to really match up the points.

Center Triangles (Piece #3 & #7) pressed with seam allowances out.

Center Triangles (Piece #3 & #7) pressed with seam allowances out.

Sew these triangles together along the center.  I press this seam towards the Piece #6-7-8 Triangle.     This square should measure 5.5″.  If you are too small, which is common the first time you hand piece sew your seams another thread width or two above the drawn line.   Just as in machine piecing.  Keep measuring and adjusting until you find your “sweet spot”.

Once you have four quadrants sewn then arrange them following the line drawing of the block and sew together two units.  Press these seams in opposite directions for the traditional nestle.  Now joint the these two units together (think large 4 Patch).

DISCLAIMER: That center is going to be ugly.  It’s 8 points coming together.  Take your time circling it, go slow and even do it twice if you feel your block needs it.   You can do it.  The first block is always the hardest…just push thru.

Now I once my final block seam is sewn take a look at that center.  If I like what I see I give the mess in the back a slight trim and then I press that final seam open and the wad in the center into submission.   Best Press is my friend and will be yours to!

Here is my hand pieced Paris Flight Block!

Finished Paris Flight Block.  Your block should measure 10.5".

Finished Paris Flight Block. Your block should measure 10.5″.

 

Whew…I need a nap.  🙂

Can’t wait to see your blocks.  If you have a question please post it in the comments or on the facebook page and I will do my best to answer them in a timely manner.  I have a full day of travel tomorrow and lecture in the evening so it may be a day or two.

For those new to the blog…you can find the templates, papers, and all kinds of other goodies in the store on my website.  Just look for the tab at the top that says “Store” and click thru.  You can also find links to my facebook and pinterest pages in the column on the left.   Normally I would put links here but WordPress is starting to act up on this blog post.  I think it needs a nap too.

Enjoy your day,
MickeySignature

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015 On The Road – Paris Flight EPP Style

Monday, January 5th, 2015

WARNING THIS BLOG IS VERY PICTURE HEAVY FOR THOSE DOWNLOADING ON A MOBILE DEVICE

Ok let me answer a question I get asked a lot ….what does EPP stand for?

EPP = English Paper Piecing

Yes I know many of you know this but some don’t.

English Paper Piecing is wrapping fabric around a paper shape, basting it and hand sewing together.

Many people apply the generic term of Paper Piecing to this…I like to stick the word “English” in there to further define it from foundation piecing.   Foundation piecing is when you have a paper pattern and you are sewing fabric to it along sew lines, flipping fabric back and sewing another to create a block or unit of a block.   This is sometimes also referred to paper piecing.  And thus causes new quilters all kinds of rightfully so confusion.

So I will use the term English Paper Piecing or EPP for short.

Now let me say I will most likely be making 80-90% of my blocks via hand piecing (which I will cover in a blog tomorrow).   Hand piecing works best for me in this type of project as I am literally shoving my block into a small bag and into my backpack to work on while on the road.   I have found that even a hexie EPP project gets mangled with bent papers doing this.   And when working on book samples for the Pieced Hexies and Pieced Hexies Deux books on the road I was constantly ironing EPP hexies in my hotel room.   To avoid this snafu I am going to hand piece on the road and occasionally do an EPP block to share while at home…or if it’s a driving gig and I have the ability to pack things with more care.

So on to specifics about the Paris Flight EPP Block.

 

Four shapes of the Paris Flight Block

Four shapes of the Paris Flight Block

These two pieces will be used in the reverse also in the block.

These two pieces will be used in the reverse also in the block.

Lay out all the pieces in the block and mark the edges with hash marks.  Make sure these hash marks are at least 1/2 inch in length so they will be visible after fabric is basted.  I also mark the four quadrants of this block by number.  This helps keep things in order.

Lay out all the pieces in the block and mark the OUTSIDE edges with hash marks. Make sure these hash marks are at least 1/2 inch in length so they will be visible after fabric is basted. I also mark the four quadrants of this block by number. This helps keep things in order. MARKING THE OUTSIDE EDGE IS VERY IMPORTANT. THIS WILL BE A MAJOR HELP WHEN SEWING PIECES TOGETHER.

Lay them out on the fabric with enough space between to mark a 1/4 inch around each piece.

Lay them out on the fabric with enough space between to mark a 1/4 inch around each piece.  NOTE: I used a dot of glue stick, specifically sewing blue glue stick, to hold papers in place.  Just a dot.

I use several different marking pens and even a mechanical pencil to mark my cutting lines.  Match the best pen/pencil to the job for each fabric.   NOTE: you can use the Paris Flight acrylic templates to mark you fabrics for cutting and side step this process if you wish.

I use several different marking pens and even a mechanical pencil to mark my cutting lines. Match the best pen/pencil to the job for each fabric. NOTE: you can use the Paris Flight acrylic templates to mark you fabrics for cutting and side step this process if you wish.

 

Using a ruler I mark a 1/4 seam around the entire piece.

Using a ruler I mark a 1/4 seam around the entire piece.

To "knock off" excess fabric and make basting a bit easier I measure 1/4" flat from the paper point tip.

To “knock off” excess fabric and make basting a bit easier I measure 1/4″ flat from the paper point tip.

Here is the tip with the excess knocked off.

Here is the tip with the excess knocked off.

 

All ready to be cut out.

All ready to be cut out.

NOTE: if you are using a fabric with a directional print take the time to lay out your papers to use that print to your advantage.   This fabric has a nontraditional stripe print.  By laying out all the papers to flow with the strip it will be less chaotic on the eyes when the block is put together.  These "little things" can make or break a block.

NOTE: if you are using a fabric with a directional print take the time to lay out your papers to use that print to your advantage. This fabric has a nontraditional stripe print. By laying out all the papers to flow with the stripe it will be less chaotic on the eyes when the block is put together. These “little things” can make or break a block.

 

All pieces cut and laid out.  I do this with every block just to make sure I like what I have chosen.  Easier to trade out a fabric now then later when sewn together.

All pieces cut and laid out. I do this with every block just to make sure I like what I have chosen. Easier to trade out a fabric now then later when sewn together.

Basting done.  I won't cover basting here as it is covered in a tutorial on the paperpieces.com website.   Just remember to keep those point flags flying on these shapes!

Basting done. I won’t cover basting here as it is covered in a tutorial on the paperpieces.com website. Just remember to keep those point flags flying on these shapes!

 

Time to sew the four quadrants of the block  together.

Time to sew the four quadrants of the block together.

I sew the two halves of the square together.  And then the longer seam down the center matching up the intersections.

I sew the two halves of the square together. And then the longer seam down the center matching up the intersections.

All four quadrants are sewing together. Next step are to sew the squares together like a four patch.   But wait.....

All four quadrants are sewn together. Next step is to sew the squares together like a four patch. But wait…..

Look what happens if you twist the squares!  A whole new block!  Let's call this London Flight.   So here is another variation you might choose to use in your row quilt.  This project is going to be full of variations so truly it will become a very unique quilt of your own.

Look what happens if you twist the squares! A whole new block! Let’s call this block London Flight. So here is another variation you might choose to use in your row quilt. This project is going to be full of variations so truly it will become a very unique quilt of your own.

Paris Flight Block.   Now off to sew six more together for this row.  Four will have a red in the outside center triangle (see yesterday's blog for graphic) and three will have the red in the inside triangle.

Paris Flight Block.
Now off to sew six more together for this row. Four will have a red in the outside center triangle (see yesterday’s blog for graphic) and three will have the red in the inside center triangle.

Whew..that was a lot of pics.  But I didn’t cover EPP with the Castle Wall block so wanted to do so in detail with Paris Flight.   Tomorrow I will cover hand sewing a Paris Flight block.

I am busy kitting up five more blocks for on the road sewing as my 2015 work calendar begins on Thursday.

Beach Cities Quilt Guild in southern California here I come!

But first a Winter Storm Watch has just been issued for here at home.  Six inches of lovely snow.   I’m off to get these blocks kitted so I can sit and watch the snow fall later today.  I love it.

Enjoy your day,

MickeySignature