I know I know. Really I should be blogging my next instalment of the #ettaquiltproject but I've been really off my game recently what with Rikki being off so much and the passing of my friend [I really want to write a whole post about him but 1. I can't start writing it without crying and 2. I'm not sure you guys would want to read it? Maybe I'll just write it for me when I'm ready and you guys can skip it if you want]
Anyhoo with the #ettaquiltproject I'm pretty sure the only person playing along is my big sis so I figured I'd slow down the pace a bit because she doesn't have a lot of time to sew!
But here's some English paper piecing tips of you are looking to start or your finding it hard!
1. Use Card [cereal packet / Xmas cards] as your templates instead of using paper. Its a lot more durable so you get more wear out of them and they are easier to fold fabric over accurately so you end up with neater corners etc.
2. Use bulldog clips. This is one I recently discovered, I used to use pins but I just kept stabbing myself as I tried to tack bulldog clips are a much easier and safer way!
3. Woven Fabrics. I'm not saying you need to go all out and buy expensive quilting cottons I mean after all these quilts were typically made out of scraps and old clothes. But using a woven fabric over a stretch fabric is definitely the way to go.
4. Use at least 1cm seam allowance. Believe it or not but too much seam allowance can actually make piecing more of a faff! a 1cm seam allowance gives you enough to work with without swamping you in fabric.
5. Use different colored threads for tacking and sewing! Mainly this just makes it easier to remove your tacking stitches because you just remove all the ******* coloured threads!
6. Good lighting. Did anyone else Mum used to tell them off for doing things in the dark and tell them they'd go blind? Just mine? Okay.... But in all seriousness threading a needle in poor lighting is enough to have you reaching for the wine, threading it in good light is a more more pleasant experience but you'll probably still want the wine!
7. And speaking of needles! Keep them sharp! For both tacking and piecing, the whole process is just a lot quicker with a sharp needle!
8. Make a vague plan. Think about what sort of style you want? Will it be scrappy? Are you doing a pattern repeat? Do you want to use a colour story? A lil bit of planning in the short term can save a lot of aggro in the long term!
9. Buy extra fabric! Not because your going to mess up [although that might happen] But because your going to love and cherish your quilt and hopefully use it lots which means holes or stains may happen and its always useful to have some extra fabric for repair work!
10. Try and use plastic template for making your card templates. Basically I make my templates I draw around 1 "master" shape. In theory this means that every single card template will be the same size, however if you use a card template as your master the repeated drawing can actually make the sides wear down and you end up with a smaller template! I tend to use either plastic templates or metal ones!
11. Iron fabric before cutting out. Mainly this just helps you to be more accurate and to limit fabric waste. Its also a huge help if your using recycled clothes to make your quilt. And be sure to iron your finished blocks so they sit flat!
Hope these help! Do you have any top EPP tips?