Monday, January 5, 2009

Sometimes It's the Little Things

I have been working hard on a new paper-pieced quilt recently. To me, paper-piecing is very similar to color by number. As you attach the colors in the correct sequence, a picture appears. There are 64 squares in this quilt, with 3 different block variations. I would usually complete a block at a time and sew the rows together as the blocks are finished. This time around I am constructing all of the sections and will piece the blocks once the paper-piecing is finished. I don't get the same sense of accomplishment as seeing the rows go together, but I like finishing all of one particular section. It's a very similar feeling to chain piecing.

I have added a new tool recently, the wooden iron. I was very sceptical that it would improve my piecing. Silly me. First though, you have to understand my sewing set up and then you will understand why this $5 tool is has had such a big impact. Honey and I live in a just the right size house. It has 3 bedrooms, 2 floors and a basement. The "office" is on the second floor. It is a strange room that is 7' wide and 16' long, but looks like 2 squares that have been offset. We have our desks and computers set up here. My sewing machine was originally in this room and so my cutting table is set up here, as well as my stash (everything that is not in the storage area off our bedroom that is). My serger, my iron and ironing board are also in the office. When I upgraded my sewing machine, it moved to the first floor into "the little bedroom" which has no bed. This room could hold a larger worktable. I recently purchased a long arm quilting machine. That went into the basement of course. The end result is I have sewing machines etc on every floor of the house. I'm sure you can picture how this works. I design and cut out my quilts on the second floor, bring the fabric down to my sewing machine on the first floor, run back upstairs to press, run back downstairs to sew, run back upstairs to press and cut a few more pieces...

I bought this little $5 wooden iron. It works much better than finger pressing and I don't have to worry about a hot mini iron falling on the floor or being knocked over by the puppies. I can finish a paper-pieced section to run upstairs to press. So... I am sewing all of the paper-pieced sections before I construct them into blocks.

My plan is to turn the basement into my studio and move everything down to one level. In the meantime, sewing can be an aerobic sport.

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