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Thursday, February 6, 2014

Paper Piecing Art: Learn with Jennifer!

Originally posted on Sewooked, edited for Fandom in Stitches
I recommend watching this video full-screen.

Way back in 2011, I was invited to be an instructor for STITCHED, a subscription-based online classroom community that offered workshops by experts in different craft-related areas. The entire shebang was conceived of and hosted an extraordinary artist, Alma Stoller.
My own workshop Paper Piecing Art: Beginner and Beyond, was geared to take students step-by-step through the paper piecing process.
I shared every tip and technique that I myself use when paper piecing. Now, over a year after the completion of the STITCHED 2012 Workshops, I offer my own class here, free for you.
Many of our patterns here on Fandom in Stitches are paper pieced, and ALL of our paper pieced patterns can be made using the techniques taught here.
This video will be especially useful if you have trouble aligning your patterns or piecing those tricky angles!
If you’re already a paper piecer, you might pick up a trick or two; if you’re new to paper piecing or have tried before and it didn’t quite click, I hope this helps you on your paper piecing journey! 
Jennifer’s Tools:

Paper Piecing Art uses Waiting for Rain, a pattern designed by myself especially for the workshop.

Looking for a text-based tutorial? You can find that here!

Need more help? Check my Sewhooked paper piecing resources!

Don't quilt alone! Join us for quilty discussions and fandomy goodness on the Fandom In Stitches Facebook Group!

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  1. Thank you so much for sharing your tutorial! I have been paper piecing for a few years but you shared a few tips that I can't wait to try :-) I do have one question for you, how to you handle really thick seams when you are paper piecing? I have worked on a few patterns where the seams get so thick it makes it very difficult to work with. Do you have any tips that might help? Thank you so much for all of the work that you do. I really enjoy playing with your patterns!!!

    1. Hi Tabatha,

      It just so happens that I wrote an explanation for this previously, so I am going to cut and past that here. Please let me know if you have any more questions. I'm always happy to help!

      ****From the PoD Facebook Group****

      Several of you have commented that you're having trouble getting your seams to lay flat or that they are too bulky to press. This happens when you have too many layers of fabric inside the seam.

      If you're piecing and realize that's going to happen (Deathly Hallows Symbol, Harry's Glasses, Time Turner, etc.), try grading the seam allowance. As long as you've used a small stitch, which, for a variety of reasons, I always recommend when paper piecing (I use a 1.4), you can trim your seam allowance to as small as 1/8". If you don't feel comfortable cutting that much seam away yourself, I'd recommend an Add-An-Eighth Ruler (http://amzn.to/1E9lJdE) in addition to my favorite ruler for paper piecing, the Add-A-Quarter (http://amzn.to/19BXWHM 6" & http://amzn.to/1AogIuP 12"). These are completely optional. You can achieve the same seam allowance with your existing ruler and even with scissors as long as you're careful.
      I also grade the corners where the Units (A, B, C, etc.) come together to help with the bulk. After all that, press, press, press! A little moisture from something like Mary Ellen's Best Press (http://amzn.to/1Jrr0BK) can also help, just don't overdo it if the paper is still on your block or you'll end up with a soggy mess.


      I hope that helps!


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  4. I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for the excellent video tutorial you made for us.

    I came across a Harry Potter quilt yesterday on Pinterest that used most of, if not all of your patterns and knew I just had to make one for myself, my sister, and my friends that introduced me to Harry Potter.

    I've been sewing for nearly ten years but was always too intimidated to sew a quilts. I just made by first quilt earlier this year for my sisters newborn baby and most of the squares were not even close to lining up LOL, but my sister loved it. I'd never heard of paper piecing before finding your site and I'm more than a little intrigued. When I first saw the patterns print out I thought what on earth is this, where are the instruction, and how am I going to figure this out?!? Your video brought everything into perspective. Your explanations are insightful and you make it look so easy! I'm excited to print off your patterns and dive into my scrap fabric box. And hopefully by the end I'll have designed a few patterns of my own to share.

  5. Thank you for all the instructions. It helped me so much. I have made three of the How the Grinch Stole Christmas blocks from Fandom Stitches, but need suggestions on how to put them together for a wallhanging or quilt. Can you point me in the right directions to figure this out? Thank you for all you do.

  6. Do you have an affiliate link for the add-an-eighth ruler?

  7. Thanks Jennifer, I loved your paper piecing tutorial. My only question is about removing all the paper from the finished product. You didn't mention any quick tips for doing this. I am planning to make a tote bag with one of your Harry Potter designs.
    Thanks Janet

    1. Hi, Janet! I have some additional resources, including a tutorial about removing paper, on my personal website. You can find them here:https://sewhooked.com/paper-piecing-resources/

      Happy stitching!