Saturday, July 21, 2012

Paper-Piecing Stars

A year ago I chose to use the paper-piecing method to construct a quilt for my grandson, Dylan (present for his 18th birthday 2013).  I have given myself another year to finish it -Yes, I know I am nuts LOL.  I chose the paper-piecing method for its convenient mobility. I have been working with one piece at a time, so I am able to pick it up and take it with me wherever I go and bring it out when I have a few spare moments in the evening watching TV or when we are away caravanning and camping.

I cut out and covered 432 cardboard Hexagons shapes with muslin, background fabric. I also cut 2,430 diamonds from cardboard. I chose cardboard not paper because I plan to re-use the cardboard 2 to 3 times more in other projects.
Each star block consists of 6 cardboard diamonds covered by fabric 1/4" larger than the cardboard and 2 hexagons covered by fabric 1/4" larger than the cardboard. I am using three Gutermann's threads Cream, Brown & Grey.  The light Cream thread 829 for the light value fabrics, medium Brown thread 1125 for the medium value fabrics and dark Grey thread 305 for the dark value fabrics.
Using whip-stitch I sew 3 diamonds together first, by placing 2 diamonds right sides together and whip-stitched along the edge, just catching the edge of the fabric and missing the cardboard, (as the cardboard will be removed later), then I whip-stitch the 3rd diamond to the others, this makes one halve of the star, then I repeat the process to the remaining 3 diamonds that are left, (second halve of star), then it’s a simple task to whip-stitch the two halves together in one straight line down the centre.
The next step is to whip stitch the 2 covered hexagons to the star (this completes one star block).

  I will need to make a total of 405 Stars blocks.

Once all the Star Blocks have been made I will need to join the star blocks into strips. The 1st rows will consist of 14 star blocks whip-stitched together and 2nd row will consist of 13 star blocks. I will need to repeat this step until all the star blocks are sewn together into strips.

It will be necessary to add a single diamond to both ends of each Row 2 to complete the design.

For the top and bottom of the quilt, a row of single hexagons joined by the pair of diamonds is needed to complete the design. This will form the quilt centre (main body of the quilt). 

Then I will need to cut 4 outside border strips from fabric (not sure what colour yet or how wide these border strips will be cut), but they will need to be cut wider than the finished width, as part of the border will go under the quilt centre.

The plan is to applique, using blind stitch, the quilt centre to these side borders leaving a portion at each corner unstitched to allow me access to join the corners by a mitre, then applique the unstitched section to the border.

It's a great opportunity to use some fabrics from my stash and try out different colour combinations and techniques to make the stars spin.
Until next time happy quilting


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