Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Page 2 of 4 FirstFirst 1 2 3 ... LastLast
Results 26 to 50 of 79

Thread: Will I ever get better at matching seams?

  1. #26
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Keller, TX
    Posts
    7,515
    You need to pin at each intersection by placing a pin through the first square at 1/4" then through the next square at 1/4" then back through the seam very straight. I sew as close to the pin as possible before I remove it so that I don't get much shifting. I also press my seams open. Fork pins are also a good tool to use. Good luck!
    Linda

  2. #27
    Senior Member Spudgm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Idaho
    Posts
    333
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by pinkyrue01 View Post
    Hi everyone! I'm a beginner but I've been trying to quilt for the last 6 months. Will I ever get better at matching seams? I watch a lot of tutorials and they just speed on through rows and everything looks great. Even if I go super slow my seams don't ever seem to match. Is this just something I'll get with practice?
    I really struggled with this also, but as others have said - going slow and pinning really help and then you just need practice. Hang in there it will get better.
    -Life is like a quilt...bits & pieces, joy -and- sorrow, stitched with love- http://spudgrandma.wordpress.com/

  3. #28
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Knot Merrill, Southern Indiana
    Posts
    5,735
    I would like to recommend a good book and accompanying DVD. "Mastering Precision Piecing" by Sally Collins. I ... and a few others here on the board call this book the "primer". Her methods will teach you how to concentrate on getting accurate seams starting with cutting, pinning, sewing and pressing.

    the amazon link below should pull up a search that will show both the book and the DVD.

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss...n+%2Caps%2C234
    May your stitches always be straight, your seams always lie flat, and your grain never be biased against you.

    Sue

  4. #29
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Western Wisconsin
    Posts
    12,161
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by pinkyrue01 View Post
    What do you mean by holding my top strip higher?
    It's hard to describe. It's an industrial sewing technique that evens out how two pieces feed (when the sewing machine is not doing a good job of it.)

    One thing you can do is lift up both strips in your hand so you are feeding into the presser foot at about 90 degree angle. Basically what this is doing is putting more stress on the lower strip and less strip on the upper strip. This corrects a tendency on some machines to feed the bottom strip faster than the top strip.

    Test your machine by taking two strips of the same length (say, two strips width-of-fabric). Start the strips so the ends are exactly together. After sewing them the entire length, see if one strip is shorter than the other strip. If it is, chances are it is the bottom strip that is shorter. The above technique will help correct that tendency.

    You can also sew by holding just the top strip higher and just holding down the bottom strip a bit with your thumb, but I find that more difficult to do. Sort of like trying to pat your head and rub your tummy at the same time.

    If you do the test and the top strip is shorter than the bottom strip, then your presser foot is probably too tight. On a lot of machines you can lighten the presser foot pressure.

    Also, using a walking foot to piece will even out how the two strips feed. However, I find using a walking foot annoying when I am piecing.
    Last edited by Prism99; 01-09-2013 at 05:54 PM.

  5. #30
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    5,784
    I agree you need to do accurate cutting. Once I got my june tailor shape cut I found my strips were more accurate as well as my seams
    Brother (XL-3500i, CV3550, SQ-9050, Dreamweaver XE6200D), Juki MO-2000QVP, Handiquilter Avante

  6. #31
    Super Member 117becca's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    dayton OH
    Posts
    1,884
    pin, pin, pin, pin....I also always will pin at intersections making sure things don't move.
    my name is becca and i'm a quilt-a-holic :-)

  7. #32
    Banned
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Sturbridge, Ma
    Posts
    4,014
    Those who don't pin and still get matching seams have discovered a magic technique. The rest of us have to pin, pin, pin,pin to get the seam to match. It is all part of the technique of the craft. And don't be mislead by those experts on YouTube.......They have done it a long time. They know their equipment and they probably use little tricks we don't see on the tube. And afterall it might be easy to get one block right.....but what about the rest of the quilt. It is just like the demos at quilt conventions showing freemotion and machine quilting. Always on a 12" square. Never on a full size quilt.

  8. #33
    Super Member hopetoquilt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    2,873
    I quilt for fun. I rarely pin. I iron seams in opposite directions and then just lock the seams together. A little tug and pull while holding onto the locked seam... And it works for me.

  9. #34
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    370
    I use a wooden iron or bone folder and do not use an iron til the block is finish.

  10. #35
    MTS
    MTS is offline
    Banned
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    4,301
    Quote Originally Posted by JustAbitCrazy View Post
    I once took a precision machine piecing workshop from Sally Collins, and it is hands down the best class I have ever taken. If you can get a copy of her book, it is worth it's weight in gold. I have only adopted a few of her methods, and my piecing life is sooo much easier!
    Quote Originally Posted by DogHouseMom View Post
    I would like to recommend a good book and accompanying DVD. "Mastering Precision Piecing" by Sally Collins. I ... and a few others here on the board call this book the "primer".
    Excellent advice!

    And like JustABitCrazy wrote, you don't have adopt all of Sally's methods (I didn't), but just knowing where and why things can go wrong will be a huge help.

    It always boils down to the cutting, sewing and pressing - individually or any combination or all three.

    The Art of Machine Piecing - I bought it when it first came out - best money I ever spent on any quilting book.

  11. #36
    Super Member lovelyl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    SW Ohio
    Posts
    2,103
    Blog Entries
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by love 2 sew View Post
    I learned the most I ever have about piecing from this book. I checked it out at the library. The best for me was how to accurately chain piece, ending with the needle down and butting the next piece to be sewn against it. Pin, pin, pin and go slow. Going slow means you can sew over pins. Loved it!
    What is the name of the book? I would like to request that my local library purchase it! Thanks!
    Linda
    There may be times we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest. - Elie Wiesel

  12. #37
    Member wpbmommy1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    South Florida
    Posts
    89
    I feel your pain! I am working on a half triangle piece to show off some hourglasses and although each square individually was almost perfect (see, almost) once I began sewing my rows together it began to look like a hot mess. Of course, any person not familiar with quilting has looked at it and ooohed and awwwed over it but when I look at it the seams just taunt me!! I have found the best method for this particular project of mine is to pin where the seams nest and to hold the fabric together firmly while I'm sewing, not so firmly that it warps but just that it behaves and then right when I get to that nesting point I take the pins out and sew right over and it does the trick. That has worked so far and then when I press it it all looks much better. Good luck, I am a beginner like you and I think we just need to keep practicing and quilting and quilting and quilting.

  13. #38
    Super Member Sandygirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    4,431
    When you pin the fabric together, make sure that the seams are ironed opposite each other vs going the same way. The seams should be snug up against the other. Then pin. Try that to see if your results are improved.
    Sandy
    Sandygirl

    Janome 9900 / Janome 9700 / Janome Decor 3050 / Janome 1100D serger
    Singer Centennial model (inherited from my late, fav aunt!)

  14. #39
    Super Member quiltmom04's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    2,877
    Pin, pin pin! Sometimes your seams will go together without pinning, but most times, you'll have to pin. But I find that not actually pinning the seams, but pinning OVER the seams, helps keep it straight . When you put a pin in the sem allowance and then do that little motion to make the point come back out again, it WILL throw the seam out of alignment. I pin about 1/4" before the seam and 1/4" after the seam. Also those 2 pronged pins work very well for pinning on each side of the seam.

  15. #40
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Front row
    Posts
    14,661
    Blog Entries
    2
    Notice the opposite side of the pieces you are sewing. If they don't match evenly together then no matter if you match at the seams the row will be crooked. I always match the opposite sides of the seams and that may mean I have less seam allowance for one fabric piece for the seam. If it is more then 1/16 less then I know I messed up somewhere. I stop and find out why before sewing more. I took Sally Collins class and it isn't for the hurry up and sew type people. Each step is very precise. She had a video class on The Quilt Show last year which was excellent.
    Got fabric?

  16. #41
    Super Member gardnergal970's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Covington, Indiana
    Posts
    1,657
    I've found that even pinning can give me wonky seams but since I've begun using Clover Clips, I'm more successful. I clip at each seam intersection. When I've sewn to the clip, I stab my seam ripper into the seam and slowly sew until at least one half of the seam is secure. As others have stated though, the more accurate my cutting, the more accurate my seams and the less I iron and the more I press the more accurate my seams.

  17. #42
    Senior Member hannajo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Brooklyn, NY
    Posts
    819
    If I'm having an especially difficult time, instead of sewing from one end of the blocks to the other, I will start by sewing over the seams first. I open it, and if it is lined up, I can finish it up. If it's not lined up I don't have too much to unsew.
    ~hannajo~
    I know enough to know that I don't know enough.

  18. #43
    Super Member Grama Lehr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
    Posts
    5,037
    I will tell you this, the more you practice, the better they get.
    Marie

    You don't stop laughing because you grow old. You grow old because you stop laughing.
    A smile is something you can't give away; it always comes back to you.

  19. #44
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Front row
    Posts
    14,661
    Blog Entries
    2
    I love Clover Clips! Did you know they have a larger size now?

    Jumbo Wonder Clips! 2-1/4" long Made to hold bigger bindings easier! A great alternative to pins, especially when working with heavy weight fabrics, piles, and vinyls. Wonder Clips can hold layered sections of sewing projects such as handle connectors to handbags and piping without distortion. It holds quilt binding while sewing and it is easy to see and easy to find when dropped on the floor. Clip base is flat for easy feeding to presser foot, and is marked with 3/16", 1/4", 3/8", 1/2", 3/4" and 1" seam allowances.
    Got fabric?

  20. #45
    Senior Member Prissnboot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Houston TX
    Posts
    786
    This is what helps me, in addition to the excellent tips I've read on this post (haven't read them all tho) - match your seams up and pin your fabric, except align the pins to where you will be sewing, so the pin acts as the seam. Now unfold your fabric and see how your seams match. It's a lot easier to unpin and repin than to unsew and resew! Good luck, welcome to the quilting world, and enjoy your journey!
    She looks for wool and flax And works with her hands in delight.

  21. #46
    Power Poster gabeway's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Kansas City, MO
    Posts
    10,488
    I agree with the pinning to make it work.
    Wayne & Gabriele, the married quilters.

  22. #47
    Super Member misseva's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    East Arkansas
    Posts
    2,425
    Blog Entries
    3
    I pin at the intersection and always use my walking foot.
    TwandasMom

  23. #48
    Super Member mike'sgirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    starke,Florida
    Posts
    2,005
    A friend of mine told me a trick that she learned from a quilt teacher. Match up your intersections, pin, then sew about 5 stitches just over the intersection. Check. If its off, rip, and do over. This saves you from sewing the whole row and it coming out off. When you are happy with your intersections, sew the row.
    Also, you will get better with time. It just takes practice, and one day you won't have to sew those 5 stitches, you will just have to pin, and sew the row. Keep at it.

  24. #49
    Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    95
    Blog Entries
    7
    It could be your feed dogs too. Some machines actually can pull enough to cause the material NOT to match up due to the feed dogs gradual pulling and stretching the material underneath so it doesn't match material on top.

  25. #50
    Super Member feffertim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Desert Hot Springs Ca
    Posts
    2,531
    Blog Entries
    14
    Quote Originally Posted by JustAbitCrazy View Post
    I once took a precision machine piecing workshop from Sally Collins, and it is hands down the best class I have ever taken. If you can get a copy of her book, it is worth it's weight in gold. I have only adopted a few of her methods, and my piecing life is sooo much easier! She does machine pieced miniature quilts which are made of very complex miniature blocks, perfectly pieced. She knows her stuff!
    I agree, I have her DVD and it's wonderful. I learned so much from her

Page 2 of 4 FirstFirst 1 2 3 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.