I’ve been learning to sew from different women, books and blogs since about the age of 10. Primarily, I’ve taught myself through books and tutorials in the last year, because I’d forgotten most of what I learned when I was younger in these last 8 years of never sewing. However, no tutorial or book can cover every single tip and trick, so I read pretty much everything I come across.
Most of my quilts have been strip pieced, so they basically contain a lot of long strips pieced together to create the length of the quilt. Because of that, the precision in the width of each strip only matters to the extent that the quilt will be longer or shorter – it won’t mess up any surrounding strips. This weekend, though, I was working on a quilt with more pieced blocks than usual, and some of my blocks came out with about an eighth of an inch of extra fabric (see the red pieces).
Insert my mystified face. It’s no big deal because I can trim the block down to size, but why is there so much extra fabric here? I already use a scant 1/4″ seam so that the blocks don’t come out too small, but why are my blocks coming out too big?
Well, today, I stumbled upon Amy’s 5 quick tips to more accurate piecing post, and just in time! Matt is going to hate this tip, because it includes buying things. Amy suggests using my ruler, not my cutting mat, to measure my fabric. I was doing the opposite: using my cutting mat to measure, with my ruler covering the unused fabric. She further recommends getting a few rulers in the most commonly used block sizes for ultimate accuracy. Amy also discusses the above-mentioned scant 1/4″ rule, in case you haven’t heard that one.
I can’t wait to use this new piece of information to make my life easier! Have you learned anything new lately?