Monday, 29 August 2016

How to attach borders to English Paper Piecing

A number of people have asked me how I attach borders to my English Paper Piecing.  I did write a blog post here when I attached the borders to my la passacaglia quilt, but I also took some photos as I finished up my Tumbling Colors and Inner City quilts, so will explain again here.



Here's what I did:

1. I decided where I wanted my borders to sit on my quilts.  Often there's two opposite easy edges with straight lines, and the other two edges are a bit trickier. I'll deal with the easy sides first.

the side of this quilt are straight, but the top and bottom aren't

2. I removed the paper pieces from the edge pieces and pressed the seam allowances out so they sat flat.




3. I laid the 1/4" mark on the ruler on the exact point where I wanted the border to meet the centre of the quilt.  I then trimmed with the rotary cutter so I had a 1/4" seam allowance to sew with. I had pieced with 3/8" seam allowance so there was a bit to trim off.



note that the 1/4" line is on the point where the paper pieces meet - see 9 3/4" on the ruler.

4.  I cut my border strips in the usual manner (measure across the centre of the quilt and cut to that length), pinned carefully, and sewed on the machine with the 1/4" foot.





5.  I pressed the seam towards the border and admired the beautiful points!





6. Now for the top and bottom of this quilt.  Once again I had to decide where I wanted the border to sit.  I laid the 1/4" mark on the ruler where I wanted the border to meet the centre. I had to cut off more on the top and bottom, just because of the way this design is. Think of it like a brick wall.  The top and bottom may be complete rows, but there will always be half bricks to on the sides.

see the 9" mark is sitting right on a point.

again - nice tidy points at the top

7. Different designs will need to be treated differently.  Here's how I trimmed my Tumbling Colors quilt.  I knew I was going to trim the top row, so only pieced half diamonds to avoid wastage.



I retained the points down the right hand side


8.  The back of the quilt is still very messy, but that's what happens with English Paper Piecing (EPP).  I did use my applique scissors to very carefully trim some of the excess points, but then I just turned it over and pressed it flat from the front.  I really don't worry about the seams sitting flat on EPP.




I hope you find that useful. I'm currently hand quilting both of these quilts with bright threads and big stitch hand quilting.  I'll show you once they are finished.

3 comments:

Ruth said...

Very clear - thanks for that Wendy!

Marsha Hodgkins said...

Well explained, Wendy. This is exactly what I would do but I'm sure it doesn't feel intuitive to everyone and having an expert explain it is worth every word.

Love your work; you are an inspiration to many of us! Marsha from QuilterinMotion

Granny Maud's Girl said...

That's what I would do too, but I doubt I could explain it as clearly and succinctly. :)