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Thread: Intimidated By On Point

  1. #1
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    Intimidated By On Point

    I have seen so many beautiful things here and at quilt shows, that are placed on point. I am so afraid I'd mess it up that I don't even try. Is there an easy way for someone (started in 1992) who sometimes still feels like a beginner?
    Life is not a movie. No one is going to yell "CUT" when you make a mistake. - Anne L. Fulton

    I am from the South....39 miles south of Boston.

  2. #2
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    Setting on point is not so hard. Just tilt your head and you will see your blocks are just rows getting longer and then shorter with triangles finishing each row. Bonnie hunter has a chart that gives measurements to cut your triangles. I have faith in you. Just give it a try

  3. #3
    Super Member ube quilting's Avatar
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    It is still straight line quilting. Find a simple on point pattern that you like and do a few sample blocks to learn how to do the setting triangles. It is not hard. Read, read, read the directions and follow them. Once you make your first you will love making more. Be fearless! Try a wall hanging as a starter project.
    You have to take that first step.
    peace
    no act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. Aesop

  4. #4
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    I agree with cjsews. I thought setting pieces on point would be hard ... until I tried it. I used a pattern for my first attempt. That way, I had instructions to follow. It wasn't hard at all, and now I feel confident setting blocks on point in my own designs. The only tricky part when you do it yourself is knowing the size of the setting triangles. But Bonnie Hunter offers all the help you'll need.

    Good luck! Enjoy the process!
    As much as I hate it, my seam ripper is my best friend.

  5. #5
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I agree. It's really all straight lines. The trick is to cut the setting triangles so that the straight of grain is on the edge of the quilt so it doesn't get all wonky. As mentioned, Bonnie Hunter has all the math:
    http://quiltville.com/onpointmath.shtml

    I usually cut them a bit bigger. Attach them to the row, then trim.
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  6. #6
    Super Member sewingsuz's Avatar
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    I usually cut them a little bigger also. try it, it is not hard at all.
    Suzanne
    Asking a seamstress to mend is like asking Picasso to paint your garage.

  7. #7
    Senior Member AVFD215's Avatar
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    Just Do It. Start with a small 24 inch by 24 inch. Not much fabric invested, use scraps if you can.
    You will be pleasantly surprised.

  8. #8
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    I hear your concern, Boston--was there myself. I find if I take my time laying the blocks out on design wall (extra bed) it really helps. I also invested (that is what it felt like!) a 22" sq ruler that I use making t-shirt quilts, but also wanted because it has a scale on it for cutting the setting triangles and corner triangles without me having to do math. But there are many charts out there that help with that too. I say go for it! It's such a simple way to get a much different looking quilt.

  9. #9
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
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    setting on point is really not difficult. If its the bias in the setting triangle you worry about I find starching bias really makes it easier to handle
    Brother (XL-3500i, CV3550, SQ-9050, Dreamweaver XE6200D), Juki MO-2000QVP, Handiquilter Avante

  10. #10
    Super Member madamekelly's Avatar
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    my first on point setting was a "just wing it" and it turned out ok. I have been making quilts many years but because I have health issues, I will probably never call myself a real quilter. If I can make it work, I know you can. Start small is my only advice. Mine was a queen, and also my first queen quilt. Like I said, if I can, you can. I believe in you.
    If you always do, what you have always done, The results never change. Change is the wings you give yourself.

  11. #11
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    I love on point and agree it is not hard. What helps me is to # the rows. Use flower pins with numbers written on them to keep your self aligned. Try it.
    The Future is Now!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjsews View Post
    Setting on point is not so hard. Just tilt your head and you will see your blocks are just rows getting longer and then shorter with triangles finishing each row. Bonnie hunter has a chart that gives measurements to cut your triangles. I have faith in you. Just give it a try
    I totally agree - tilting your head to see the rows is the key! Like many other things with quilting and other crafts I just did it not knowing it was supposed to be hard. The first quilt that I made was a double irish chain on point. Luckily I had a pattern with great directions so it truly was not difficult.

    I also agree with the other poster who mentioned labeling your blocks/rows. I use sticky notes and pin to the blocks/rows. I also find that sometimes it helps to start with laying out the longest row (diagonal corner to corner) and work to the smaller corners with the subsequent rows. Makes it a bit easier to see sometimes and make sure you're laying out your blocks in the proper order if there is a secondary design happening in the quilt.

    As the saying goes...just do it! You'll love it.

  13. #13
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    Sketch it on paper, number the rows on the sketch. Turn the sketch so it looks like rows. Make the quilt to match the sketch & number the rows the same. Dip the triangle fabric in starchy water, dry and press before you cut the triangles. This will control the bias. This is so row friendly, you can even assemble & quilt by the quilt-as-you-go method. Go fo it.....the prettiest quilts i've made were on point.

  14. #14
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    When you see a picture of a quilt on point, turn the picture so the rows appear to be straight across. Then you can count how many blocks you need per row. Each row gets setting triangles which are not that hard to calculate. As many have written, it is also possible to oversize the setting pieces and cut them down later. We are all beginners, the first few times - no matter how long we've been sewing/quilting. You can do it!
    Martina
    Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric!

  15. #15
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    I'm a newbie and just figured this out

    I am working on a quartered stripes quilt, which I hated as soon as I had enough blocks made to see how it would look. My quilting mentor suggested I add sashing, which helped a lot. The ladies on Garden Web's quilting forum suggested I set it on point, which I decided to do. So, I downloaded some 1/2" graph paper and laid it out. Quartered Stripes has 2 different patterns, which are alternated. That's the explanation for the Xs on the squares. I wrote everything down, so it should be easy to copy.

    (I decided not to set it on point, as I would have to "unsew" all those blocks to make the triangles for the edges. I just want to finish this top.)

    I numbered the rows and wrote down how many squares across it would take.

    bkay
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  16. #16
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    The worst part about on point is the triangles at the ends. Before that it's just rows. Go for it!

  17. #17
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    Told myself I wouldn't post these anymore, but Boston's plea touched my heart.

    Jan in VA
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    Jan in VA
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  18. #18
    Super Member citruscountyquilter's Avatar
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    Jan's illustration is great (as usual). Thanks Jan.
    I recently did a quilt on point with sashing and corner stones. The tricky part for me was getting the sashing on the correct sides of the squares. The interior squares take sashing on two sides as the other two sides will be covered by the sashing on the adjacent square. The squares that touch the setting triangles however need sashing on three sides as the setting triangle will butt up to it and will not have any corresponding sashing.
    I starched my setting triangle fabric to help stabilize the bias edges. I cut them as Jan illustrated.
    I put my corner triangles on last.
    I laid my blocks out on the bed because it was too big for my design wall and then took a picture of it. Being able to refer back to the picture helped me immensely.
    When everything was put together I trimmed my setting triangles to match them up with my squares.
    I stay stitched (about 1/8" so the stitching would be in the seam allowance for the binding) around the edge of the entire quilt top so the bias edges wouldn't stretch in the quilting process and to keep all the edges where the rows joined from coming apart. Once that was done I didn't have to be so careful handling the quilt top.
    Go for it. I'm sure you will feel that when you're done the final effect will be worth the effort.

  19. #19
    Super Member annette1952's Avatar
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    It isn't hard to do & you have so many people here to help you if you run into a problem. Once you do one then you will wonder what you was intimidated about! lol Any time though that we try something new I think we feel this way. Just do it & you will see. Also I am sure there are tons of videos out there if that is easier for you. Have fun!

  20. #20
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    Turn the pattern picture on the diagonal, that usually helps me. But truthfully...every time I make an on point quilt I have to refer to the internet for instructions...and I have been quilting for 40 years.

  21. #21
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    Thanks so much everyone for the advice, encouragement, and for the visuals. Next time a block calls to me, I may have the courage to topple it, so to speak.
    Life is not a movie. No one is going to yell "CUT" when you make a mistake. - Anne L. Fulton

    I am from the South....39 miles south of Boston.

  22. #22
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    It really isn't any different than straight line quilting, just sideways! The difference is with the edges. So, for your first one (and to get past your fear) simply make regular rows , tilt them sideways and then trim the sides to make it square (rectangle). I know that sounds very simplistic, but if you do it with a small quilt, you will see how it goes together and then you will not have a problem working on a larger one.

  23. #23
    Super Member NZquilter's Avatar
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    I've done at least 3 quilts on point. What I find helps me is to lay everything out on, if you are lucky to have one, a design wall. I use my queen size bed, and take pictures as I go. That way I will remember exactly where everything will go after I need to clean it up. You can do it and I think you will love the results!
    Last edited by NZquilter; 04-17-2017 at 11:32 AM.
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  24. #24
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by citruscountyquilter View Post
    Jan's illustration is great (as usual). Thanks Jan......I stay stitched (about 1/8" so the stitching would be in the seam allowance for the binding) around the edge of the entire quilt top so the bias edges wouldn't stretch in the quilting process
    Thank you for extending the instructions on this method I wrote. Because the setting triangles made with my method are larger than needed, ON PURPOSE, there is room to trim this section of the quilt all around; I did not mention this in the instructions posted. BUT...Allow yourself slightly MORE than what would be the 1/4" seam allowance when you trim and the quilt blocks will "float" when the border is applied. No risk of losing your points this way!
    If you'll note, cutting the squares for the setting triangles the way I do does not give you BIAS edges, so there should be no distortion on handling and quilting. (Nonetheless, I routinely stay stitch around all my tops. as you mention, before quilting, too.)

    Jan in VA

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    Last edited by Jan in VA; 04-17-2017 at 01:51 PM.
    Jan in VA
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  25. #25
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    I have the Fons&Porter Easy diagonal sets ruler. Has directions for cutting side set triangles and corner set triangles.
    Use for blocks up to 12"......... You will enjoy using this ruler.

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