• Question and Answer Part Two

    Today, I would like to post answers to some of the questions I received in the past.

    What size square do I cut if I want the quilt squares to end up a 12 inch sq. My gut tells me 13 inch, is this right? 1/4 fir the in seam and 1/4 on the other three sides?
    In order to end up with a 12" square, a quilt square must be cut 12 1/2", because you use 1/4" on each side as seams.

    What kind of thread should i use on the sewing machine that does not break did all adjustment on machine but thread keeps breaking. Thanks
    Use new thread on your sewing machine that is dual duty all purpose thread. Some people prefer using 100% cotton thread. I like to use mercerized cotton 37%---polyester 63% all purpose thread. Thread that is too old will break easy in your sewing machine. Also make sure your sewing machine is threaded correctly. I have had thread to break because I thought my machine was threaded OK, but it wasn't. If all else fails take your machine into a dealer and ask for help.

    Subscriber comments:
    I had a sewing machine repair man tell me that often when you buy cheap thread (like 10 spools for a dollar) the thread doesn't hold up and it either breaks or the sewing machine gets all messed up. So I always buy name brand, good quality thread.
    Subscriber comments:
    The problem can also be the needle. It needs to match the thread.
    Subscriber comments:
    Another cause for breaking thread is putting the needle in wrong into the needle bed. Try reversing it and it might work. I know I have put it in backwards and the thread shreds and/or breaks every time.
    Subscriber comments:
    It is vitally important to thread your machine with the presser foot in the up position. Otherwise, the tension discs are engaged while threading and will cause breakage. You can thread the needle with the presser foot down, but not the machine.
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    One of the problems I have with my sewing machine is that when I start at the edge of the fabric it pulls it down into the bobbin area and the fabric gets caught in there. It also sometimes bunches up when I go over a seam unless I pull it from the back. I have had the machine serviced, but it seems to be a quirk with this machine. Do you know of any machines that won't do that?
    When starting at the edge of your fabric, put a small piece of doubled up fabric through the machine first and then onto your piece and it will not go down through into the bobbin area and get caught. Then cut off the small piece after you finish your block, and use it when you start the next block. I use a "New Home" machine and now I believe they are made by "Jahome" machine company. I have found this above method works very well in many different kinds of sewing machines. Also, if the fabric bunches when you go over a seam, don't pull it from the back as this might bend or break the needle. Instead, use your hand to manually turn the wheel, while gently feeding the fabric at the same time. It works for me.

    Subscriber comments:
    I, too, have had that problem - however, I've discovered that if you hand turn the wheel to get that seam started and go real slow for the first 1/2 inch or so, the fabric doesn't seem to get caught in the throat plate. Hope this helps.
    Subscriber comments:
    I found to prevent the material from being pulled into the bobbin area, put a small piece of tissue paper on top with it hanging over the top. You can easily pull it off when you finish sewing.
    Subscriber comments:
    Some problems with sewing machines can be eliminated by being certain the bobbin thread came from the spool that you are using on the top.
    Subscriber comments:
    Another solution that works well for me is to double fold a piece of material & place it under the foot before the thick seams. Do not sew thru it. The foot will go right over the seam with no pulling or pushing & the stitches will be even. There is also a small plastic device called a "Hump-Jumper" it does basically the same thing & it's inexpensive! I have used both ways.
    Subscriber comments:
    Regarding the problem with the fabric bunching up and going into the needle slot and then into the bobbin area. If your sewing machine has a slot rather than a round hole for the needle to go through and you can get a plate that has a round hole for the needle it should solve the problem nicely. It sure worked for me.
    Subscriber comments:
    Whe you start your seam, place your fabric a half inch or so back past the preser foot, back stitch the few stitches, then go forward with your seam. I have done this for years, your back tacking is done to start with..
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    If I want a finished block of 8 inches that has 4 triangle sections. What size should the triangles be?
    To have a finished 8" block using 4 triangle sections, you should cut two 9 1/4" squares. Place right sides together. Draw a diagonal line on the lighter color square (so you can see the line), stitch 1/4" from line on both sides of the line. Cut on the line. Press. Layer these two (two color) squares again right sides together with colors opposite. Draw a diagonal line. Stitch 1/4" from line on both sides of the line. Cut on the drawn line. You now have two squares with quarter square triangles (four triangles).

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    Morning, I am piecing a quilt that I have decided to put together on the diagonal. The squares measure 12 inches. How do I figure out the size I need for the setting triangles and corner triangles.
    When setting together 12" squares on the diagonal, I find if I draw myself a grid on grid paper using 1 square as 1 inch, then draw out several 12" squares together, then from that you can measure across the squares and get an exact measurement you need to cut your corner triangles. Also check in several quilt books where other quilts are made on the diagonal for extra help. You may want to cut yourself a square a little larger-- cut it in half on the diagonal and trim to match what size you want -- do not forget to add seam allowances to the measurements of the setting triangles.

    Subscriber comments:
    To know how big to make the side triangles, measure the block, add 2 inches and cut a square that size, then cut in half diagonally. This will give you 2 side setting triangles. For the corners, measure the quilted square from top to bottom, and cut a square the same size. Then cut that square on the diagonal twice, giving you 4 quarter squares for the corners. These may be a little bigger than needed but can easially trimmed to fit.
    Subscriber comments:
    The last about 12" on diagonal set.... If you do what the 1st comment says you will have a bias edge that should be a straight edge! This can cause problems with stretching, wrinkling,etc.
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    If you have any questions you would like to ask then use the suggestion box at the bottom of the page.
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