Paper Piecing Success!!


I consider myself pretty adept at most techniques of traditional quilt making.  Paper piecing, however, has always been a huge stumbling block.  Every time I tried to paper piece a block, I thought that paper-piecing addicts must be a crazy bunch.  Why would anyone put themselves through this?  My ability to place and then sew and then flip a piece of fabric and have it end up where it should, despite cutting it almost twice the size necessary, always ended in frustration. 

I have been forced though to confront my lack of paper piecing ability.  I am starting (again) on a Dear Jane quilt – this time as b.o.m. through Stitchin’ Heaven (their instructions are absolutely wonderful).  Also, my youngest son has asked for MoonGlow by Jinny Beyer, as a grad present in a couple year’s time,  how could I say no?

I have been a past member of the The Quilt Show and receive their email newsletters.  When I saw that Carol Doak – “the queen of paper piecing” – was a guest on an episode, I had to renew my membership.  I am trying to cut down on quilting expenses this year, but I felt that the annual membership was less than the cost of some quilt classes, and as I don’t attend any of those, then, here’s my class! 

I watched a wonderful demonstration by Carol, and I think finally the lightbulb moment has come.  I attempted, successfully and without many arrggghhh moments, a paper pieced Dear Jane block.

Then I had to face my first Dear Jane triangle – paper pieced.  Oh my.  An hour later, voila!  Yes, it took me that long….because I was doing a lot of talking to myself, and I did make a few errors.

So I proudly and happily carried my little block over to the cutting mat to square it up using my DJ triangle ruler that had been sitting unused for a few years.  Acckkk!  Why is my triangle so small?  What on earth have I done?   It turns out that the foundation paper I printed from my CD was the wrong size triangle.  Ohhhhh…I wish you could have seen me after that discovery!

This morning, I’m starting again – on the correct size triangle – and I think I’ll have it done in about a half hour – pretty good progress!


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