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Thread: Strip Piecing Question

  1. #1
    Junior Member J.M.'s Avatar
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    I know you can create four patches and nine patches quickly by strip piecing them. But I've always seen this method as a machine method, sewing the strips together with the sewing machine.

    I've been afraid to use it for piecing my Irish Chain top because I do all of my piecing by hand. I'm afraid that if I sew the strips together by hand, then cut them to make the nine patches, my stitches will come loose. Maybe not right away, but certainly later on.

    So, my question to you all is can you hand sew the strips together without your quilt falling apart because the stitches aren't secure?

  2. #2
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    I've done hand piecing for 9 patches and personally find it easier to handle and stitch the patch rather than do the strips. I knot off at the end of a seam and just start again with another patch, I don't cut in between. Sort of my chain stitching by hand. If you hand stitch a strip I'm not sure that the seam wouldn't fall apart as you cut into it. Good luck.:)

  3. #3
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    Strip piecing is strictly a machine sewing technique. Having said that, dakotamaid's method would be as close as you can get to the machine technique when sewing by hand. Very clever!

  4. #4
    Junior Member J.M.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99
    Strip piecing is strictly a machine sewing technique.
    That's actually good news. I'd hate to learn after cutting all those squares and piecing about half of the needed blocks that there was an easier way to do it :lol:

    Thanks for letting me know for sure. I'll just continue on with what I was doing.

  5. #5
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    I think you should only strip piece by machine. I think it would come apart by hand. Why do you hand piece, if you don't mind me asking? I do like to do some things by hand--but piecing is by machine only, in my opinion. It seems stronger somehow.
    Sue

  6. #6
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by susie-susie-susie
    I think you should only strip piece by machine. I think it would come apart by hand. Why do you hand piece, if you don't mind me asking? I do like to do some things by hand--but piecing is by machine only, in my opinion. It seems stronger somehow.
    Sue
    I know this question is directed to JM but I hand piece in the car, at ball games, visiting relatives, etc. Keeps me doing something while still talking and visiting. I have a hard time just sitting and doing nothing. :D :D

  7. #7
    Super Member SuziC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotamaid
    Quote Originally Posted by susie-susie-susie
    I think you should only strip piece by machine. I think it would come apart by hand. Why do you hand piece, if you don't mind me asking? I do like to do some things by hand--but piecing is by machine only, in my opinion. It seems stronger somehow.
    Sue
    I know this question is directed to JM but I hand piece in the car, at ball games, visiting relatives, etc. Keeps me doing something while still talking and visiting. I have a hard time just sitting and doing nothing. :D :D
    I give you a lot of credit! I cannot hand piece.

  8. #8
    Junior Member J.M.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by susie-susie-susie
    I think you should only strip piece by machine. I think it would come apart by hand. Why do you hand piece, if you don't mind me asking? I do like to do some things by hand--but piecing is by machine only, in my opinion. It seems stronger somehow.
    Sue
    Part of it is because I can do it wherever I want. On the couch in front of the tv, in the same room as my family, in the garden when the weather's nice. Another part of it is because I like to do it by hand. It calms my mind in a way machine sewing could never do.

    I'm not sure if machine piecing would necessarily be stronger. There are quilts older than 100 years around that were completely hand pieced and used, yet still survived to this day. I don't think it matters much.

    I make sure to do a backstitch every few stitches and a double stitch at every seam, to make it stronger. That's the way my teacher did it and she's never had a problem with a quilt falling apart either, and she's been doing it for 30 years. So I've never made the decision on hand vs. machine piecing because one was stronger than the other. I just like hand piecing and quilting more than doing it with a machine.

  9. #9
    Super Member jemma's Avatar
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    that i think is the trick start+stop with a back stitch or 2 and back stitch every 4/5 stitches -----as taught to me by my 86 year old quilting friend --she has some old quilts that are stable after many many washes

  10. #10
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    i hand piece alot too...and the only way i know of to use strip piecing when hand piecing you would need to do a little extra prep work...you would need to measure and mark at each spot you are going to cut...i stitch to 1/4" from the cutting line, stop, knot, cut, start again 1/4" on the next side of cutting line, and keep going until the strip is sewn...then when i cut my strips i am not cutting my stitches. i've found it easier to just piece squares instead. sometimes strip piecing is not a faster way

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