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Thread: Trouble putting quilt together

  1. #1
    Member Jackie54's Avatar
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    Hi everyone, I hope all is well. Iam making a tumbling block quilt, but Iam having a problem in putting the tumbling block together. When I sew them together I get a puckering in the middle. Does anyone know what Iam doing wrong? I thought this was an easy quilt. Or is it me? Well everyone have a great quilting day.
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  2. #2
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    Sounds like one edge is stretching. Tumbling block pieces are not cut all on the straight-of-grain, so stretching tends to be more of a problem with them. Are you doing all of the sewing by machine? I would have starched the fabric heavily before cutting, to prevent stretching while working with the pieces. It might help to spray starch now. Starch stabilizes fabric so it is less subject to distortion and stretching.

  3. #3
    Power Poster cjomomma's Avatar
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    The only thing I can think of is that maybe your seam isn't straight. This what I have experienced when I get a pucker. Sorry I can't be more help.

  4. #4
    MTS
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    First question I would have to ask is if you are you sewing (or attempting to sew) Y-seams?

    Or are you sewing all the way to the end, like you do when you sew squares together?

    It's not clear if you're having a problem putting the tumbling block together (from the 3 diamonds), or joining tumbling blocks to each other?

    Can we see a picture?

  5. #5
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    Tumbling blocks is not an easy pattern because of the dreaded Y seams. It helps to mark the 1/4 inch seam lines and stop, right at the corner intersections. This leaves the seam allowances free to sew on the next diamond. Good luck! :thumbup:

  6. #6
    Senior Member tangledthread's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackie54
    Hi everyone, I hope all is well. Iam making a tumbling block quilt, but Iam having a problem in putting the tumbling block together. When I sew them together I get a puckering in the middle. Does anyone know what Iam doing wrong? I thought this was an easy quilt. Or is it me? Well everyone have a great quilting day.
    If you are using the Marci Bakers pattern, joining by strips, she has a really great video on it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWpSETMbws4
    If you watch the video on "oh my stars" part 1 and 2 she gives alot of great tips. Here is the one I did, I used a double layer of batt, I woun't do that again! I am still new!
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  7. #7
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    i am working on a tumbling block right now too- pic's tomorrow :)
    but anyway- i do alot of prep work- i cut my diamonds- then i sit with a ruler and pencil and draw the 1/4" line all the way around each one. it goes faster than you might think-and saves lots of time later. when i sew i stop right on the x's where the seams meet. no puckers, everything laying nice and crisp :)i will snap a couple pics of start to finish tomorrow to.
    if you are using english paper piecing you need to stitch right to the points.

  8. #8
    Senior Member lileth1374's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tartan
    Tumbling blocks is not an easy pattern because of the dreaded Y seams. It helps to mark the 1/4 inch seam lines and stop, right at the corner intersections. This leaves the seam allowances free to sew on the next diamond. Good luck! :thumbup:
    The Y seam was my problem. This is great advice!

  9. #9
    Member Jackie54's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTS
    First question I would have to ask is if you are you sewing (or attempting to sew) Y-seams?

    Or are you sewing all the way to the end, like you do when you sew squares together?

    It's not clear if you're having a problem putting the tumbling block together (from the 3 diamonds), or joining tumbling blocks to each other?

    Can we see a picture?
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  10. #10
    MTS
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    Thanks for the pics- if you can I'd love to see the back as well.

    This looks like a Y-seam problem and stretching problem.

    Even if the block is stretched, that extra fullness should be worked in within the 2 stopping points.

    The Y-seams on the individual block look like they are done well, and are laying flat.


    Are you marking your stopping point? Do you sew from the edge in to the Yseam or start at the Y and sew your way out?

    So hard to ask questions - it's such a visual thing.

    I'd love to see a pic of the back, along with a close-up of one of the joins that are bunched-up.

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