I’ve been trying to puzzle out how quilters make tiny, intricate quilts so precisely since one of my daughters was given a sweatshirt with this heart on it many years ago:
Many things came together to bring me to Foundation Paper Piecing. 1) We went to a lecture by Linda Seward at Lady Sew and Sew in Henley where I bought her excellent new book. Having seen Linda’s quilts, I was inspired to try something new. 2) I had a bag of fabric scraps that were too good to throw away but too small to use for regular patchwork pieces. 3) I found this wonderful video by Karen Johnson of Connecting Threads that explains the whole process of Foundation Paper Piecing and gave me the confidence to give it a go.
There seem to be many different versions of Foundation Piecing some using calico but I followed Karen’s instructions using tracing paper which worked for me. She also uses an ‘Add-A-Quarter’ ruler that makes the whole process very easy.
After gathering all the supplies together, the next step was to find a pattern. I used one by Carol Doak that looked easy enough for a beginner and chose my fabric.
At this point I started Karen’s youtube video and paused it after every step.
The secret to this method of Foundation Paper Piecing is to keep the fabric on the wrong side of the tracing paper and sew with the paper uppermost in the machine. Place the first piece of fabric under the tracing paper so you can see the wrong side through the paper. Then add each subsequent piece of fabric right sides together.
Karen’s instructions are so easy to follow, I don’t have anything else to add except that I added a backing by putting right sides together and stitching around 3 and a half sides. Turn right way out and press. The gap left for turning can be used to stuff with lavender and adding a ribbon.