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Thread: Question about Paper Piecing

  1. #1
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    Question about Paper Piecing

    I am teaching myself how to paper piece blocks for a quilt , I have watched videos and read books about this , and have made my first block , it is a star , it turned out great, as i was ripping the paper of of the fabric I noticed some of the stitches came undone so i went back and renforced them , now on my next patter that i am making the directions say to take the bobbin and thread out of my machine and to "sew" over all the lines on the pattern piece first before using it ? because i didnt do it on the first pattern is that the reason some of my stitches came undone? i am using copy paper for my patterns, other than this problem i had , i am starting to enjoy paper piecing !!!

  2. #2
    Super Member charsuewilson's Avatar
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    Use a shorter stitch length. Instead of 12 stitches/inch, use 15 stitches per inch.

  3. #3
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Did you shorten your stitch length? I shorten mine down to about 1.5.

  4. #4
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    along with shortening your stitch length, before you rip that paper take the point of a pin and run in into that stitching line....it will help to tear that paper...then tear into the block not yanking away........gently is the word of the day.....It might be adviseable to look into either specific paper piecing paper-C Doak has a block of 100 I think, for less that $10, or someone suggested blank newsprint paper cut down to size vellum is usually too expensive at the office supply store, maybe on line might be a good place to find a thinner paper....I am sure someone here has the answer

  5. #5
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    yes shorter stitch length and stitch out into the seam allowance too. then always place your thumb nail on the stitches as you tear the paper away. move your finger down and tear, and so on. it helps keep the stitching safe from the tension of the tearing away of the paper.

  6. #6
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    I use regular printer paper .... shorten my stitch length as short as it will go to 1.0

    I have no problems taking the papers off and with no pieces of paper sticking in under the stitching ... or the stitching pulling apart.

    If I am doing an intricate block where the pieces are small or it is handles lots, sometimes the paper falls off too soon. Then I bandaid it back in place using painters tape that I can sew over, and press with a hot iron, without a problem
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Sew many ideas ... just sew little time!!
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  7. #7
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    I fold along the stitching line, then stitch right next to it. Then I don't have to tear anything.

  8. #8
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    I stitch on the line with a very short stitch. Then, I try to sit outside and tear the paper off--I live in the country and figure it is not littering. I fold the paper on the stitched line before ripping. I rarely have a problem.
    Laurie in NYC

  9. #9
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    I saw a suggestion on here somewhere to go to a medical supply store and get a roll of exam table paper or get a roll of blank newsprint paper. I have used regular printer paper but it is harder to tear away. All the tips here are very good ones. Sometimes just folding the paper back against the stitches breaks the fibers enough to help. Are you using a thin straight edge (template plastic) and an add-a-quarter ruler? Essentials! N

  10. #10
    Super Member SouthPStitches's Avatar
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    I don't have a lot of experience with a paper piecing, but read recently somewhere if you stitch along the entire pattern first without thread or bobbin, it will perforate it, making it much easier to remove the paper later. Can't say I've tried it, but just passing this along for conversation's sake.

  11. #11
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    I sew with a very short stitch also, then I fold the paper along the seam and tear from the inside out to the edge of the seams.
    Bernie

  12. #12
    Super Member nunnyJo's Avatar
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    love love love PP and I pull with tweezers and short stitches do help

  13. #13
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    I use a shorter stitch and freezer paper. Copy paper seems too heavy.
    Sue

  14. #14
    Super Member Buckeye Rose's Avatar
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    You can also spray a bit of water onto the paper before tearing....it softens the paper and makes it easier to tear....not to worry about the little bits of paper left, they will disappear in the wash!

  15. #15
    Super Member pumpkinpatchquilter's Avatar
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    I do lots of paper piecing...two things that can help in addition to dropping your stitch length, fold your paper along the lines before sewing to make them easier to rip when you're done. You can also perforate the lines by running the paper through your sewing machine without thread in it before sewing. Good luck!
    Valerie Smith - pumpkinpatchquilter
    Obsessed Quilter and APQS Long Arm Machine Quilter
    www.pumpkinpatchquilter.com

  16. #16
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    I hope you shortened your stitches and folded the paper before trying to remove it.

    Also I hope you used a thin paper and not computer paper. I tend to use 25% rag vellum that I got on sale from Staples years ago. Still haven't used it all up yet. I have also used that thin drawing paper from pads meant for children. I haven't used it but know that exam table paper also works.

    Have fun.
    Have fun quilting! If it isn't fun, you will miss a lot.
    ali

  17. #17
    Super Member retrogirl02's Avatar
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    A friend of mine uses old telephone books for free, thin paper. I have tried it with regular printer paper and like that it is so stiff for intricate work. When I can, I sew, fold the paper at the seam, finger press and tear from the seam side while I hold the main piece in place. It seems to work for me but I don't do a lot of paper piecing. I hope you're having fun experimenting with this technique.
    OVER THE RAINBOW JANE is the name of my Dear Baby Jane----though it should be poor, neglected & may never ever be finished baby jane!
    http://retrofabulous-retro.blogspot.com

  18. #18
    Senior Member rush88888's Avatar
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    i remember on this forum somewhere that someone said to pull the paper apart, like both horizontally, not one horizontal and one vertical.
    "perfection is the enemy of done."
    "the secret to having it all is knowing you already do."

  19. #19
    Senior Member sewplease's Avatar
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    It probably does help to perforate the paper first as your pattern directed, but in my opinion that could get rather tedious. Small stitch, fold before tearing, and start tearing in the middle of the seam will help prevent those loose stitches.
    Laura

  20. #20
    Junior Member Alexandra's Avatar
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    I use Stitch-N-Tear Lite for my foundation piecing and I love it. I shorten the stitch length. But it is very stable, translucent, goes through the ink jet great and is very easy to remove. On a few small projects such as a table topper, I just left it in because it is so thin and flexible.

  21. #21
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    Thank you everyone for the help ! i thought i reduced my stitches enough , but after reading your ideas i reduced them from a #2 to a # 1 and my stitches were a lot smaller and when i took the paper off it was so much easier and i didnt have any seams come undone !!! Love all you guys and this site !!!

  22. #22
    Super Member Yarn or Fabric's Avatar
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    I no longer sew through the paper. I use washable glue sticks instead. Love it. I've taught the method to a few friends and they are hooked as well When I do sew through paper, I also lower the stitch length (which always stinks when I have to rip them out not that I would ever have to do that lol.

  23. #23
    Super Member kitsykeel's Avatar
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    I have tried it both ways and find Peckish's way of folding the pattern and sewing along the edge of the line to be easy and saves all that tearing and little pieces of paper all over the floor. Also good because the pattern can be used again and again. She has so many ideas and in another post or on youtube she showed how to knot the end of thread when hand sewing. Very clever.

    E=Peckish;5865613]I fold along the stitching line, then stitch right next to it. Then I don't have to tear anything.[/QUOTE]
    Kitsy

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