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Thread: My first attempts at paper piecing.....don't laugh!!!!

  1. #1
    bearpaw's Avatar
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    I decided to give pp a whirl since I'm going to be sewing along with the Dear Jane sew along in January. I printed a couple of patterns off the internet.

    The square in a square turned out ok. The sailboat......well......I reversed the background fabric and the sail fabric. And one of the pieces was too small.

    A couple of questions:
    How do you cut the right amount of fabric for each piece, do you just wing it, or is there some way to figure it out.

    Also, when you cut your 1/4" seams, do you use a ruler and rotary cut, or just eyeball it and cut with a scissor?

    I think I like paper piecing if I don't think about it too much. If I think too much, I confuse myself. :roll:
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  2. #2
    Senior Member estherblair's Avatar
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    your so brave and you did good good.

  3. #3
    Junior Member swimmom's Avatar
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    I love to paper piece - I cut much better points that way. Carol Doak has many patterns and hers usually tell you the size of fabric to cut. I also use a ruler that has a lip to give you 1/4 seam. You are right it is best just to do it and not to think too much - perhaps that is why I like it so much.

  4. #4
    Super Member Teacup's Avatar
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    I haven't gotten the nerve up to try PP yet, but I'm going to have to give it whirl sometime. These look good for a first effort. I've seen the cutting ruler with the lip mentioned above available online at several sites, but of course, not doing PP, I've never tried one.

  5. #5
    Super Member nanabirdmo's Avatar
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    paper piecing in a lot of fun. i think you definitely have the hang of it. as far as getting the right size pieces i am famous for using too small a piece because i think i should try to conserve fabric. i end up with a too small piece and boy is it hard to unsew those tiny little stitches. lol

  6. #6
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    I haven't tried it yet. Too intimidated. I think you did great.

  7. #7
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    bravo!!!!


    you're over the PP hump and are fast on your way to being a pro!


    cutting the shapes for the square in square is easy just cut it 0.5 inches larger then what you need and trim it down - that gives you plenty of room on each side.


    the boat thing is a different story because all the shapes are different sizes and all the angles are different too.

    in this case i would do strip paper piecing.

    you figure out the size strip you need to cover the large sections and go to work. it might be something like 5 inches high by the width of the fabric.

    sew the strip on to the paper, fold it over to cover the section, and trim the 1/4 seam for the next section.

    then when you need that color again just use the strip.



  8. #8
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    I think you did fine. When I started pp I had troubles also, but I really enjoy it now. I just eyeball the fabric needed, and I use my ruler for cutting the 1/4" seam. I'm working on one now, only need 135 more blocks. Needs to be done for Christmas.

  9. #9
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    I think you did an excellent job!!! :D :D :D

    I use a ruler and rotary cutter to trim the 1/4 in seam allowance.
    I take one of the patterns and cut out each section...I use these as a template and just add a half an inch all around to give myself some wiggle room :wink:

  10. #10
    Super Member Butterflyspain's Avatar
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    Hi great job for a first time. If you want to get the right size for your pieces, copy another pattern out on paper and then use that as your shape sizes. Cut each one 1/2" bigger all round and you canīt go wrong and you wont use excess fabric.

    I also mark the shapes in the colours I am going to use, that way you cut down picking up the wrong fabric which i used to do.

    Hope that helps

    Elle

  11. #11
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    I envy you for trying. I could never do it. GREAT JOB!

  12. #12
    bearpaw's Avatar
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    Thanks for the encouragement!

    Thanks for the tip on how to measure the pieces needed. Great idea to mark the template in the color of the fabric (as you saw, I did have trouble with this!

    Thanks again!


  13. #13
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kluedesigns



    in this case i would do strip paper piecing.

    you figure out the size strip you need to cover the large sections and go to work. it might be something like 5 inches high by the width of the fabric.

    sew the strip on to the paper, fold it over to cover the section, and trim the 1/4 seam for the next section.

    then when you need that color again just use the strip.

    Yup! This is what I do as well. If I am doing several of the same block I will actually cut the strip down to the length of the biggest piece. So I measure the unit in the paper at it's longest point by it's widest point regardless of what kind of crazy angles it may have. I have found that with many angled pieces I can get two out of a cut rectangle by flipping it so I wouldn't recommend it if you are concerned about print direction. A trick that I learned in a PP class is to hold the paper pattern up to the light with the piece of fabric placed where you intend to sew it and ensure it is covering all the space by at least 1/2" on all sides. Once you get the hang of it you will really like PP not to mention the spectacular results you can acheive with it.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by feline fanatic
    Quote Originally Posted by kluedesigns



    in this case i would do strip paper piecing.

    you figure out the size strip you need to cover the large sections and go to work. it might be something like 5 inches high by the width of the fabric.

    sew the strip on to the paper, fold it over to cover the section, and trim the 1/4 seam for the next section.

    then when you need that color again just use the strip.

    Yup! This is what I do as well. If I am doing several of the same block I will actually cut the strip down to the length of the biggest piece. So I measure the unit in the paper at it's longest point by it's widest point regardless of what kind of crazy angles it may have. I have found that with many angled pieces I can get two out of a cut rectangle by flipping it so I wouldn't recommend it if you are concerned about print direction. A trick that I learned in a PP class is to hold the paper pattern up to the light with the piece of fabric placed where you intend to sew it and ensure it is covering all the space by at least 1/2" on all sides. Once you get the hang of it you will really like PP not to mention the spectacular results you can acheive with it.

    i use paper that you can see thru so you never have to worry if your fabric is going to cover the area.

    here's a link to the paper i use


    http://webstore.quiltropolis.net/sto...3&Item_ID=1087


    not to mention that little bits of paper are never left behind the stitches. its amazing how great this product is - the paper just rips right out.


  15. #15
    Power Poster RedGarnet222's Avatar
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    Oh this is a learning process and the blocks came out so precise. Don't be hard on yourself about the misplacement.

    It is hard to figure out where to put what. I have sometimes put a small letter next to the nimber to keep me on track. The other thing that helps is to have a colored in picture of the block next to the sewing machine, that way you can refer to it.

    All in all, though, you did a great job on your first ones. Isn't it fun? Really different than the other way of setting squares.

  16. #16
    Super Member Quilt4u's Avatar
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    You did a great job. Very nice.

  17. #17
    Power Poster Mousie's Avatar
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    the only thing I'm laughing at, bearpaw, is a silly, willy, nilly ol' bear!
    You did great! :D

  18. #18
    kd124's Avatar
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    Way to go! You did great!

  19. #19
    Super Member ania755's Avatar
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    Nice job...!!! :lol:

  20. #20
    bearpaw's Avatar
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    Thanks again everyone....it was pretty fun once I got the hang of it.

    Thanks for the link to the paper, Klue, I think it will definitely help if I can see the line from both sides.

    Does anyone know of an online tutorial for the strip pp method? I'm pretty sure I get it, but would like to see a demo.

  21. #21
    Super Member Chele's Avatar
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    You did great! You get the concept, so that's huge! I have to practice the concept every week or so to remember how to do it! It's so backward to me!

    So many great suggestions too. I ordered some of the paper Klue recommended. I've tried quite a few, but they are usually so hard to rip off!

  22. #22
    Super Member SharonC's Avatar
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    You did really well....it's your first time and you've got the concept down pat. Just like anything it's practice, and more practice. Your blocks are great--pat yourself on the back!

  23. #23
    Super Member Shemjo's Avatar
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    Great job with pp. I LOVE pp, and have muddled my way through a couple pieces. I had more problems with making sure my pieces were large enough. I finally decided larger was way better than ripping out those tiny stitches, and it is way more fun now! It is so fun because the finished product is so precise! :lol:

  24. #24
    Moderator sharon b's Avatar
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    Good Job ! I am thinking about taking a class in September at the LQS. I have the books and have tried one square but think more "professional " help is needed. You did good :thumbup:

  25. #25
    Super Member MollieSue's Avatar
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    You did a great job!!! :thumbup:
    I've not had the guts to even try it yet! lol!!!

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