Friday, February 27, 2015

Making the NYB units

OK, so in between stitching on a Baltimore Album quilt and blocking 2 others this week (and mind you these don't really leave much extra time -- only that I choose to steal for my own sanity), I started on the little spikey NYB units.  They finish about 5" up the straight side, so not so large, and I need 24.  

First error was Monday when I cut all the pieces of blue and purple.  Unfortunately I didn't discover my error until yesterday.  Would seem that I cut enough pieces/triangles for about 16 blocks, not 24. Not sure what I was thinking, but it sure would have been easier to have cut all I needed then, rather than having to pull out 25 fabrics all over again!  Anywho...Here's what I am doing to make this (the curved missing portion/quarter circle  will be added by machine once all of these are made.  They look really pretty in person.  What doesn't convey well in photos are that some of the fabrics are gilded with gold.
This part of the unit is paper-pieced.  It's far from my favorite job -- kind of messy, slow, but it works for these.
Here's the back.  Before I go on, I have stay-stitched on 3 sides within the seam allowance to keep the bias edges from taking over the piece.  I do remove part of the papers beneath the purple spikes before the next few steps because the piece is easier to handle that way.
I have printed a template for the lavender quarter circle.  Disregard the templar piece shown in the picture, as I initially thought I'd applique the piece to the PP unit.  I changed my mind!
Let's look at how I am making these 1/4" (or slightly more) bias units.  It's a technique I learned this past fall in a Sue Nickels class at Houston.  I have used bias bars and bias turning w/ iron gizmos in the past, and they can work, but often the bias pieces feel stretched, or they require starch to make them hold the press.  This is easier.  These strips are 3/4" and cut on bias.

In my hand, just roll the 2 edges into eachother, and put a running stitch to hold it together.  It is relatively quick, and satisfies my need to have on-the-go projects.  I do NOT press these.  They are a little easier to work with unpressed.   You can press after they are stitched in place.

Next I use a tiny amount of glue stick and place the bias strip where I want it.  You could use pins, but they are a pain in the rump.
With a fine thread like silk or Wonderfil Invisifil, hand stitch the top edge of the bias strip to the PP unit.

I always print out a real-size pattern to have as a guide. 
 This pattern helps me to know that the lavender arc is where it belongs.  I also lightly glue this into place.  As a sidenote, if the lavender arc is cut a hair large, like 1/8" or so, then you have a little play in the stitching, and it can be trimmed to size after stitching.
Because there are lots of seams under that bias strip, it is important to trim things down as much as possible.  Keep the paper-pieced seams at 3/16 ", and you still may need to trim some areas so these aren't too bulky.

 Only another 23 more to go!..

1 comment:

LynCC said...

OK, I am seriously impressed with the 1/4" arcs in there!