Friday, February 4, 2011

teensy tiny tute

I finally got a chance to work on my paintbox blocks again.
I'm certainly no expert
but I have made quite a few of these blocks
and in doing so 
have managed to develop a system that works pretty well for me.

I like working with 3 colors at a time,
which makes 6 blocks.
2 colors / 4 blocks don't quite create a 'circle'
when chain piecing
and 4 colors just don't fit on my little ironing table,
so 3 it is.

First I lay out all my pieces in order 
so I can grab them quickly.

I sew the top seam first for all six blocks
one right after the other 
without cutting the thread
then grab the one I'd started with
and add the bottom piece.

I snip the thread between the last and the first block that I sewed
and bring 
what had been the last block in my six-set
around to the front 
(creating the 'circle' I mentioned earlier)
and continue sewing the other 5 blocks

When I have both the top and bottom pieces of the block
sewn on
I remove my little circle from the machine
 and cut the blocks apart,

press the seams toward the outside,

and then repeat the process - this time
adding the sides of the block.

With this method
the only thread I waste
 is that little bit up there on the left.

After pressing the seams 
I give the square a spray of starch, 
iron again,

and then repeat the whole process again.
In no time at all
I've got six blocks ready to be squared up.

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