Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Row Along Background Fabric and Seam Allowance Check...

Good morning:)
Today I wanted to talk about the background fabric for the row along quilt.
We didn't use any in row one (until today as you will see in a minute)....
but we will be using it in every row from now on.

Of course you will want to use your favorite background fabric...
we as quilters all have one that we love and keep on hand!
I am using my white solid that matches my fabric.
It's called Clean White #C100-01 by Riley Blake.
I will be using it throughout the quilt and in the borders also (which will be pieced).
White is great with my fabrics but if more of an ivory solid goes with yours...go for it!

Another option of course is to use what you have on hand...if you are doing this...you will need to make sure that your background scraps go well enough together and are not too busy so that they take away from the prints you are using in the rows:)

Now for some technical talk...about seam allowance when piecing a quilt.
As you well know...cutting accurately is the first important step to making a quilt block but even if you have cut each piece perfectly...you're block will not measure what it should if you do not sew with an accurate 1/4"seam allowance.

How can you make sure that you're seam allowance is accurate?

There are many online tutorials that will help you with marking a 
1/4" seam allowance on your machine.
Here are a few good one's that helped out my friends in my church group class;
click here and here
But whichever way you have done....I cannot tell you how important it is to TEST your seam allowance to make sure that you truly are sewing with a 1/4"seam.
Never guess or assume it's correct....always test several times to make sure that you understand and are confident that you are stitching accurately.
If you had problems with the row one 4 patch blocks not measuring 2 1/2" x 2 1/2" each...and you cut accurate 3" squares to begin with...
use the links that I just provided and test your seam allowance out.
I promise...just by taking a little time to do this...it will save you ALOT of "unsewing" in the end.

Okay ...with that being said...I will tell you what works for me....
I have used The Angler 2 for years and I love it and always recommend it to my students.
I use it not only for sewing a 1/4" seam allowance but also for my easy corner triangle method!
 for a demo on the Angler 2...how to install it...and how to use it.

Okay...onto a little bit 
about cutting rows the correct width.

Cut from your background fabric and sew onto each end as pictured above.

Fold your row in half and line the folded edge up onto your cutting mat like this.

Use the measurements on your mat for this. 

Always measure from your center fold out of your row and trim off the excess white using your rotary cutter and placing your ruler directly onto the HALF measurement like this.
Always use your ruler to check that your lines are straight before cutting.

Doing it this way ensures that you have the same amount of background fabric on each end and that your row will fit...and be perfectly centered.
Also...by cutting the end background pieces bigger than you actually need them...and then trimming to the measurement needed it helps to make sure that each row will measure exact and gives you a little room to play with.

I recommend doing this step with each and every row so
 that you don't have to do it all in the end...
that would not be fun and you might put off finishing your quilt just for that reason!

I also wanted to show you that I added a button to the side of my blog that leads directly to the

Feel free to add it to the side of your blog!
You will need to link it to the group by copying and pasting the flickr group home page address because I don't know how to attach it to the button for you...sorry...wish I did ...but I don't;)
It's been so fun to see everybody's row 1's showing up and now I can hardly wait to see your row 2's!!!

Okay peeps...
I'm off to meetings this morning!
Have a quilty kind of day:)

***edit July 2013
The instructions for the
BIMB Row Along Quilt
are in my new book
"Quilty Fun"

to get your copy!


trish said...

Thank you so much Lori! Fabulous instructions!
I can't wait until tomorrow!! Will get all my chores done today so tomorrow can be for sewing! :0)
Have a great day. Trish xo

✾Jamie Lee Cooley✾ said...

Super! Does tat mean there is a little wiggle room for those of us who are not always perfectly accurate? Hooray! My first strip came out a little big.

Judy said...

Thank you Lori. I did have trouble with my sewing foot with the edge guide. I changed the foot and it came out much better. I will do the test and try to find the template you use. I'm sure I will need it Thank you.

legato1958 said...

Excellent piecing tips , especially for beginners like me! I ordered several of The Angler 2 's (for gifts and myself!) ( The UTube video made it clear how it is used, too.)

Your new fabric line is so gorgeous!!

Thanks for teaching us and giving great reasons to quilt!


Janet S said...

Very cute!

Kim said...

Hi Lori~

I am late to the group! LOL I just saw the butterflies on another blog and had to come discover the source. I joined the flickr group and tried to load my fabric choices, since I had some questions for others....however, my pictures aren't showing up in the group page. Do they need to be approved first?

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