Sunday, 7 July 2013

Production Line

I needed to find a way to speed up the piecing of my flannel improv blocks. Once I started to develop a method I wondered how I could work on multiple blocks at a time. The answer - like most answers - came to me in the middle of the night.

I figured if I layered  them on sheets of A3 copy paper I could work on a stack of blocks at a time, moving between sewing machine and iron easily and keeping the pieces for each block separate - like a series of jigsaw puzzles - and gradually building them up. (Off-cuts of batting or flannel would probably work just as well, but I didn't have these to hand and copy paper is cheap and can be reused multiple times).

First, stack the pinned pieces next to the sewing machine - each block on its own sheet of paper.

Once all the pieces for the block are joined, move the whole sheet to another handy place. (In my case my extension table was sitting behind the machine not being used.)

When all the current pieces have been joined pick up the whole stack and move it to your ironing mat to press and trim.

The mini blocks are now ready to audition the next fabrics to be added.

Then each block can remain on the paper as further additions are made until it has reached the required size. (In my case 11 1/2 ")

As clear as mud? It's working for me - helping to piece quickly and keeping each block separate. As there are so many pieces of varying size it's not practicable to chain piece but this is helping me to avoid chaos,

Sue xxxx

PS: This is supposed to be on my 'Tips and Tutorials' page but I can't work out how to do it. Help!

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