Thursday, February 07, 2008

How to Make Patchwork

There are many kinds of patchwork. I'm hooked on the kind that uses expensive top-quality printed cotton, fancy tools such as rotary cutters and self healing mats, and involves very precise measuring, cutting and sewing - a single thread-width too wide or too small can make the difference between a lovely quilt and a lumpy wonky disaster.

But there is another kind of patchwork (actually there are several) more suited to recycling used clothing, upholstery fabric, and so on. It uses paper or card templates to ensure accuracy, even with fabrics of different weights or stretchiness. It's called English paper piecing and my mum taught me to do it when I was very young. I'm going to teach it to you now.

1. Measure a square accurately and cut it out of heavy card. Use this as your template to cut lots more squares of waste paper or card. If your fabrics are quite heavy, card is better. Paper is adequate for lighter fabrics such as cotton. You can use any size of square. Bigger squares mean less sewing and your quilt will be finished quicker. Smaller squares make better use of your fabric with less waste. 4" squares is a good compromise.

drawing of a scrap of fabric and a square of paper2. Cut pieces of fabric that are larger than your papers all around. You need at least 1/4" overlap at all points. Place a paper square on to the wrong side of the fabric scrap, then fold the edges over and secure.

drawing of a scrap of fabric folded over a square of paper3. Traditionally you secure the fabric on to the papers with large tacking stitches, and this is what I always do. But Gabrielle from Permaculture in Brittany uses masking tape, and Stephanie from A Roker Artist once used staples (she was using very heavy upholstery fabrics - staples would make big holes in finer fabric so I don't recommend them). Check that the pretty side of the fabric is showing - if the grotty side is showing you've tacked your fabric on upside-down.

drawing of a scrap of fabric tacked onto a square of paper4. When you have a stack of tacked (or taped) fabric squares, lie two of them face-to-face and stitch them together with small neat stitches. Just nip the edges of the fabric. Try not to sew through the paper, although it can't be helped sometimes. Open your pieces out flat - they should lie nicely and the stitches should be unobtrusive.

drawing of two squares sewn together5. Keep sewing squares together. Don't remove the papers until the square is entirely surrounded by other squares.

6. That's it. You can stop when you run out of fabric or when your patchwork is as big as you want it. I'll write another post soon about how to turn your patchwork into a quilt. But you could also turn it into a tablecloth (just hem the edges), curtains (there are instructions all over the internet for how to make curtains), clothing, a duvet cover, or anything you like.

Other shapes you can use are hexagons (if you arrange the colours carefully you can make the traditional pattern known as Grandmother's Flower Garden), diamonds (careful colour placement makes the traditional pattern known as tumbling blocks), rectangles, lozenges or any other shape that tesselates.drawing of tesselatinng hexagonsdrawing of tesselating diamonds











This is Part 1 of a three part series. Part 2 is Another Way to Make Patchwork and part 3 is How to Make a Quilt.

11 comments:

heather t said...

That's pretty cool. I like that you can sew as you go and not have to wait until you have enough scraps to do the entire layout. If you have a scrap that looks good next to this other scrap, sew 'em together and build as you go.

I do prefer the lumpy, wonky, disaster tho. Maybe that's because that's how mine tend to turn out. :D

Moonwaves said...

Hi Mel

I remember my sister starting to learn to do this in school and helping her however she lost interest very quickly and so I never found out how to finish it. I'm still not sure from your description. So, when do you take the paper out? And what happens if you have sewn through the paper - in fact, how do you manage not to sew through the paper (this is possibly where my sister was going wrong and thus lost interest but I was only about 7 at the time and don't remember). If the material is folded all around the paper, how do you manage to sew anything without getting the paper? You can just imagine to yourself that a very clueless seven year-old is asking these questions as really, that's where I am in terms of sewing.

I did a workshop a couple of years ago at the Knitting and Stitching show to learn patchwork and it was a similar technique except that we used cardboard, ironed the material over the carboard and then removed the card before starting to stitch. So, I've still not figured out how to do it with the paper still in there.

Melanie Rimmer said...

Good questions, Moonwaves.

When do you take the papers out? You can leave them all in until the end and take them all out together when it's finished. Alternatively (if you don't have enough papers and want to reuse them) you can take the paper out of any square that's already surrounded by squares. Does that make sense?

How do you not sew through the paper? You make very litle stitches. Imagine that instead of papers you used thick card. You couldn't possibly sew through the card. So you'd use your needle to pick up a little bit of the fabric at the edges of the card and sew that. Does that make sense? If you accidentally sew through a little bit of the paper now and then (and you will) you'll have to rip the paper slightly to get the paper out. It doesn't matter. Just be careful not to tug roughly and rip the stitch instead of the paper. The point is that you shouldn't be taking great big stitches that go 1/4" into the patch and through the paper, because if you do, when you try to fold the patches apart they won't lie flat, and your squares won't be square.

The ironing method sounds like it would work. The whole point of this technique is to get accurate squares that fit together perfectly. Fabric is stretchy and floppy, but paper is stiff and rigid. There are all sorts of similar techniques - in the USA they have a product called freezer paper that is coated with a plastic layer. When you iron it onto fabric it sticks temporarily. I've cut that into squares or hexagons and used it to do EPP (English paper piecing) without tacking. I've also used spray starch and then ironed patches, which makes them stiff like paper. You can sew starched ironed patches accurately, and then wash the starch out at the end.

Do ask if anything else isn't clear.

Crafty Gardener said...

I have a quilt made using this method. I'll have to get some photos of it. It was made about 30 years ago out of all recycled material. I think I still have the templates that I used.

joanie said...

The recycled fabric quilting is by far my favourite. Thanks for showing us this old technique.

esto es nuevo para mi said...

thanks from Spain!

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I am new to patchwork. My interest in patchwork was due to the amount of clothes that I see thrown away and the need to use this material in one way or another. I normally enjoy doing things with my hands so I believe this is the solution to my old clothes. Your instructions seem very straight forward so I will give it a try. Will let you know how it goes.

liwo said...

成人電影,情色,本土自拍, 美女交友, 嘟嘟成人網, 成人貼圖, 成人電影, A片, 豆豆聊天室, 聊天室, UT聊天室, 尋夢園聊天室, 男同志聊天室, UT男同志聊天室, 聊天室尋夢園, 080聊天室, 080苗栗人聊天室, 6K聊天室, 女同志聊天室, 小高聊天室, 情色論壇, 色情網站, 成人網站, 成人論壇, 免費A片, 上班族聊天室, 成人聊天室, 成人小說, 微風成人區, 色美媚部落格, 成人文章, 成人圖片區, 免費成人影片, 成人論壇, 情色聊天室, 寄情築園小遊戲, AV女優,成人電影,情色,本土自拍, A片下載, 日本A片, 麗的色遊戲, 色色網, ,嘟嘟情人色網, 色情網站, 成人網站, 正妹牆, 正妹百人斬, aio,伊莉, 伊莉討論區, 成人遊戲, 成人影城,
ut聊天室, 免費A片, AV女優, 美女視訊, 情色交友, 免費AV, 色情網站, 辣妹視訊, 美女交友, 色情影片 成人影片, 成人網站, A片,H漫, 18成人, 成人圖片, 成人漫畫, 情色網, 日本A片, 愛情公寓, 情色, 舊情人, 情色貼圖, 情色文學, 情色交友, 色情聊天室, 色情小說, 一葉情貼圖片區, 情色小說, 色情, 色情遊戲, 情色視訊, 情色電影, aio交友愛情館, 色情a片, 一夜情, 辣妹視訊, 視訊聊天室, 免費視訊聊天, 免費視訊, 視訊, 視訊美女, 美女視訊, 視訊交友, 視訊聊天, 免費視訊聊天室, 情人視訊網影音視訊聊天室, 視訊交友90739, 成人影片, 成人交友, 本土自拍, 免費A片下載, 性愛,
成人交友, 嘟嘟成人網, 成人電影, 成人, 成人貼圖, 成人小說, 成人文章, 成人圖片區, 免費成人影片, 成人遊戲, 微風成人, 愛情公寓, 情色, 情色貼圖, 情色文學, 做愛, 色情聊天室, 色情小說, 一葉情貼圖片區, 情色小說, 色情, 寄情築園小遊戲, 色情遊戲情色視訊, 情色電影, aio交友愛情館, 言情小說, 愛情小說, 色情A片, 情色論壇, 色情影片, 視訊聊天室, 免費視訊聊天, 免費視訊, 視訊美女, 視訊交友, 視訊聊天, 免費視訊聊天室, a片下載, aV, av片, A漫, av dvd, av成人網, 聊天室, 成人論壇, 本土自拍, 自拍, A片,成人電影,情色,本土自拍,

uhfdf said...

情色電影, aio交友愛情館, 言情小說, 愛情小說, 色情A片, 情色論壇, 色情影片, 視訊聊天室, 免費視訊聊天, 免費視訊, 視訊美女, 視訊交友, ut聊天室, 視訊聊天, 免費視訊聊天室, a片下載, av片, A漫, av dvd, av成人網, 聊天室, 成人論壇, 本土自拍, 自拍, A片, 愛情公寓, 情色, 舊情人, 情色貼圖, 情色文學, 情色交友, 色情聊天室, 色情小說, 一葉情貼圖片區, 情色小說, 色情, 色情遊戲, 情色視訊, 情色電影, aio交友愛情館, 色情a片, 一夜情, 辣妹視訊, 視訊聊天室, 免費視訊聊天, 免費視訊, 視訊, 視訊美女, 美女視訊, 視訊交友, 視訊聊天, 免費視訊聊天室, 情人視訊網, 影音視訊聊天室, 視訊交友90739, 成人影片, 成人交友,

免費A片, 本土自拍, AV女優, 美女視訊, 情色交友, 免費AV, 色情網站, 辣妹視訊, 美女交友, 色情影片, 成人影片, 成人網站, A片,H漫, 18成人, 成人圖片, 成人漫畫, 情色網, 日本A片, 免費A片下載, 性愛, 成人交友, 嘟嘟成人網, 成人電影, 成人, 成人貼圖, 成人小說, 成人文章, 成人圖片區, 免費成人影片, 成人遊戲, 微風成人, 愛情公寓, 情色, 情色貼圖, 情色文學, 做愛, 色情聊天室, 色情小說, 一葉情貼圖片區, 情色小說, 色情, 寄情築園小遊戲, 色情遊戲, 情色視訊,

fgeegf said...

aaaa片, 免費聊天, 咆哮小老鼠影片分享區, 金瓶梅影片, av女優王國, 78論壇, 女同聊天室, 熟女貼圖, 1069壞朋友論壇gay, 淫蕩少女總部, 日本情色派, 平水相逢, 黑澀會美眉無名, 網路小說免費看, 999東洋成人, 免費視訊聊天, 情色電影分享區, 9k躺伯虎聊天室, 傑克論壇, 日本女星杉本彩寫真, 自拍電影免費下載, a片論壇, 情色短片試看, 素人自拍寫真,

做愛的漫畫圖片, 情色電影分享區, 做愛ㄉ影片, 丁字褲美女寫真, 色美眉, 自拍俱樂部首頁, 日本偷自拍圖片, 色情做愛影片, 情色貼圖區, 八國聯軍情色網, 免費線上a片, 淫蕩女孩自拍, 美國a片, 都都成人站, 色情自拍, 本土自拍照片, 熊貓貼圖區, 色情影片, 5278影片網, 脫星寫真圖片, 粉喵聊天室, 金瓶梅18, sex888影片分享區, 1007視訊, 雙贏論壇, 爆爆爽a片免費看, 天堂私服論壇, 情色電影下載, 成人短片, 麗的線上情色小遊戲, 情色動畫免費下載, 日本女優, 小說論壇, 777成人區, showlive影音聊天網, 聊天室尋夢園, 義大利女星寫真集, 韓國a片, 熟女人妻援交, 0204成人, 性感內衣模特兒, 影片, 情色卡通, 85cc免費影城85cc, 本土自拍照片, 成人漫畫區, 18禁, 情人節阿性,

免費成人影音, 彩虹自拍, 小魔女貼影片, 自拍裸體寫真, 禿頭俱樂部, 環球av影音城, 學生色情聊天室, 視訊美女, 辣妹情色圖, 性感卡通美女圖片, 影音, 情色照片 做愛, hilive tv , 忘年之交聊天室, 制服美女, 性感辣妹, ut 女同聊天室, 淫蕩自拍, 處女貼圖貼片區, 聊天ukiss tw, 亞亞成人館, 777成人, 秋瓷炫裸體寫真, 淫蕩天使貼圖, 十八禁成人影音, 禁地論壇, 洪爺淫蕩自拍, 秘書自拍圖片,

Anonymous said...

免費a片 a片 免費av 色情影片 情色 情色網 色情網站 色情 成人網成人圖片成人影片 18成人 av av女優avav女優情慾 走光 做愛 sex H漫 情色 情趣用品 情色 a片 a片 成人網站 成人影片 情趣用品 情趣用品アダルトアダルト アダルトサイト アダルトサイト 情趣用品
補正下着

Share it