I’ve been diving into scraps this week, as I had a couple of days all to myself. Inspired by a quilt I saw in the Scrap Attack Flickr group, a scrappy star by Svetlana of s.o.t.a.k homemade, I decided to try it myself. It looked similar to lots of spiderweb blocks found in many traditional blocks, some published ages and ages ago, I thought I might be able to draw on my years of quilting and put it together myself.
First, download my scrappy stars paper piecing template by clicking on the link (NOT the picture). It should measure 10 inches from tip to tip when you print it out.
A tip I learned from Becky Goldsmith is to print out your paper piecing templates on vellum paper. I bought a package some time ago from my local paper store, so I went to the copy center and printed ONE copy of the diamond. Then I pulled the original off the platen glass and checked it for size. Yep. Same size. I wanted to make about eight stars (and there are six diamonds in each star), so I printed off 60 copies — about ten more diamonds than I needed, just in case.
Okay, so PANIC! When starting a new process or project, I can feel overwhelmed by it all. But then I said to myself, just choose six fabrics that go somewhat together, in fact the less they go together the better it will be. That’s all, then you can take it from there. I chose fabrics, laid them out, liked them. I cut 3″ squares for the two tips, then I cut the rests of the strips 2 1/2 inches wide by 6 1/2″ long. Yes, I know that’s way wide, but I liked some squoosh room when working with them.
Line up two at first, peeking through the parchment template to line them up straight. Stitch on the line. If you are not familiar with the technique, there are several YouTube videos (just google “paper piecing”). I don’t trim up the sides yet.
As you progress, you’ll need to trim off the excess in between your seaming. Lay it out flat on your cutting surface, and crease back the template on the stitching line, making a nice crisp crease. This also helps when you rip that paper off, later.
Line up the ruler, slice off the extra. Iron the fabric down into place, then keep going until you fill up your diamond.
From the paper side, use the marking to stitch around the outside edge. Since you are using scraps, some may be off-grain and this stay-stitching helps stabilize that outside edge.
Trim. It looks sooo pretty now, but now comes the real fun!
Lay them all out. * Smile.* Since you are working in such a large scale (20 inches from tip to tip), that star really makes an impact.
Or do I like it this way? Flipping them around creates a totally different look.
I have this clever device: a hinged mirror. I place ONE diamond, set the edges of the mirror on it, and voila! My block, in reflection.
This is what it looks like from the top, sitting on top of one diamond.
Check back Tuesday for how I put the pieces together. AND. . .Don’t forget to come back on Wednesday for our thread giveaway. We have ten different bloggers participating in the Leap Day Superior Thread Giveaway.