Thursday, April 14, 2016

Foundation paper piecing in The Splendid Sampler ...

I have had lots of foundation paper piecing practice with the Sylvia's Bridal Sampler blocks and this week we had our first one in The Splendid Sampler....

On Wednesday I needed to remove myself from my sewing space ..... - it's a lovely big room with a huge window (it was built as a 'formal lounge' but it's not so formal now!!) but that centre fan/light is the only light I have..... as you can see I just get shadows over my working space ...

A nice young man with a lovely artist tattoo down his well developed calf came to sort things out for me.... sorry - no photo's ladies - he might have thought I was a bit wierd!!!

Tarka kept a close eye on him!! (she thinks anyone who comes to the house has come especially to see her!)

Anyway - I set myself up on the dining table where I could keep a watchful eye on the proceedings (I had to make sure he was getting it right you see????) and caught up on my The Splendid Sampler blocks...

First up was Foundation Paper Piecing.... now I hadn't done a lot before Sylvia's but we girls are using the Freezer paper method which I hadn't heard of until a few months ago ....

THIS online tutorial shows how I like to do it...  I even have one of those add 1/4 inch rulers shown in the tutorial, and find it invaluable for cutting those edges to line it all up (see above picture).  This method saves picking out all the little pieces, and I keep an old needle in my sewing box especially for piercing the paper.  Reading up some people do not find it as accurate as the traditional method, but I'm happy with it.

First up I tackled the Foundation Paper Piecing block called Family Affair and designed by Janice Ryan....

Then I did the Bonus block designed by Pat Sloan ( there is officially 100 blocks but we are lucky to get a few bonus ones thrown in too!)

For the piecing of blocks I like to use the double pronged pins ... they hold the edges securely when stitching to get those squares joining nicely (which still doesn't mean I get them right always though!!)

Pieces of Friendship designed by Lindsay Mayland was up next....

 And then the latest block Family Stars designed by Kimberly Jolly... which is the one I found the most challenging with making sure the right colours were in the right places ..... 

.. another one I finished during the week was Flying High designed by Janet Clare.... I have done some raw edge applique but not on this small scale - and found it lucky that it was okay to have it quite scribbly!!

While I sew, and iron, etc I am enjoying listening to:

I loved the movie, which is a bit different to the book but just as much fun....  We are so lucky to have free access to a good number of  e-audio books through our library

So, a good mornings work and this is where I am up to with my blocks..... 

(lots of people comment on my light - my daughter bought it for me especially because I love my blog and all the pictures).  They are available in Kmart (and probably elsewhere) and there are packs of extra letters which I got too.  Sooooo fun....

... By lunch time I had my lights all done.....  what a huge difference...

Righto, I better get back to customer quilts!!!  Have a lovely stitching day....


  1. Will have to go look at that tutorial on paper piecing. You have created some beautiful blocks there, I have done a few of Sylvias as paper piecing, I find it a bit easier than cutting lots of small bits!! The new lights look wonderful, no more sitting in the shadows for you now!!

  2. What a great post...... it's a wonder your visitor didn't help you with your sewing.... lol...
    Terrific progress on your splendid sampler. Good light makes all the difference.

  3. Hi Fiona ,lovely post my friend,i love those new lights,your blocks are amazing ,you are so clever Fiona xx

  4. So good to see that wonderful lighting. And of course I am pleased you had good entertainment while it was being done.
    And amazing work on the sampler blocks. Busy, busy!!

  5. Lovely to have all those blocks out of the way and some nice new lights. xx

  6. It all looks fantastic - sewing, mini quilts, new lights, Tarka <3 and those pins!!!

  7. Very busy - but how did you manage to drag your eyes away from said tattoo??
    I'm sure the lighting will help enormously - lights in the middle of a room are so useless. My DH reckons I can keep one power station going just with the lights in my sewing room.

  8. Let there be light - those are awesome! I have table lamps everywhere and it's a pain. Love love love your blocks, but paper piecing scares the pants off me....

  9. The blocks are great...and so are the lights. I am constantly moving my portable lights around (and tripping over them)...maybe that could be the next project.

  10. Dear Fiona,
    wonderful progress on your Splended Sampler blocks and what a difference in light in your sewing room. Great post.


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