Are you a quilter? Have you ever tried paper piecing? There are two different kinds of paper piecing – and they are very different. English Paper piecing uses paper templates and hand stitching. You might be familiar with the flower designs made from hexagons – a very popular motif in English Paper Piecing. Then there is the other kind of paper piecing – also known as “foundation piecing”. That is the kind of paper piecing I’m talking about today. Paper Piecing – or foundation piecing – uses a pattern printed onto a paper “foundation”. The fabric is stitched together, through the foundation paper, using the printed lines on the paper. This makes paper piecing a supremely accurate way to quilt – because both the structure added by using the paper and being able to follow the lines on the pattern exactly make it perfect. It is much more time-consuming than other piecing methods, but when making a quilt block where accuracy is important, paper piecing is the way to go.
I’m on the Thermoweb design team, which gives me access to some of their latest and greatest products, including this one that is brand new on the market – StitchNSew EZ Print Quilt Block Sheets. It is a printable material that can be used for paper piecing. It is not woven, like fabric, has many of the same properties as paper, but is translucent. I used the material recently when making the refrigerator magnets you may have seen in my review of ProMAG Magnetic Papers, and on the Thermoweb blog.
Here is what Thermoweb has to say about the StitchNSew EZ Print Quilt Block Sheets:
StichnSew EZ Quilt Block Sheets provide support and are easily removed by tearing away up to the stitches without distorting the embroidery. Tear-Away Perforated is very soft and gentle against the skin. Print directly on the material to easily design quilt blocks!Features & Benefits: 8.5 in x 11 in (22 cm x 28 cm) 20 sheets per pack EZ to print EZ to trace EZ to tear-away EZ embroidery Transparent Non-woven 100% Polyester Machine washable Proudly made in the USA!Tips: EZ Quilt Block Sheets can be run thru an inkjet or laser jet printer Feed EZ Quilt Block Sheet into printer to print allow to dry before touching. Run any lettering in mirror setting so they are the correct orientation when cut from the fabric.
Because the sheets are supposed to be printable, and printing the pattern on the sheet is an essential part of paper piecing, I started by printing out my pattern.
I used my Lexmark Inkjet printer, and the sheet printed out beautifully! The lines were crisp and clear, and the numbering was easy to read.
Something that I liked about these sheets over standard foundation papers (most of which are similar to newsprint in thickness and texture) is that they were translucent. When paper piecing, sometimes you want to fussy-cut a piece. The translucency of the sheet made it easy to find a motif to fussy-cut.
It also made it easier to line up the fabric against the line on the pattern. Normally, you have to hold your paper up to a bright light to make sure that the fabric is placed correctly. While I still had to hold up my paper to the light, it didn’t need to be quite as bright to be able to see through the sheet and single layer of fabric.
I also preferred the texture of the sheets over other papers I have used. The newsprint texture of most sheets can slip under the presser foot of a sewing machine, which makes them less accurate. These sheets have a texture more like a woven fabric (though they are not woven and are not fabric), which kept them in place better under my presser foot. This would also make them ideal for a beginning paper piecer to use, since they wouldn’t have to worry about slip distorting accuracy.
These quilting sheets, while thinner than a piece of printer paper, were as sturdy as printer paper. I found that in order to easily tear them away from my quilt block when complete, I needed to reduce my stitch length more than I would with other foundation papers. I reduced them to the length I would use when piecing using regular paper.
The only accommodation I had to make when using the sheets was a reduced stitch length – otherwise I found these sheets to be superior to other foundation papers I have used. The StichNSew EZ Print Quilt Block Sheets retail for $8.00 for a package of 20 sheets.
- Selecting Batting for your next Quilt Project - May 5, 2015
- Product Review: Terial Magic - January 7, 2015
- Last Minute Stocking Stuffers for Quilters - December 22, 2014
- Lumi Sunfold Product Review - September 15, 2014
- Iron Cover Comparison - September 9, 2014
- Clover Press Perfect Iron Safe Review - September 8, 2014
- Fiskars Rotary Blade Replacement Review - September 3, 2014
- Book Review: Simple Beginnings Beading - July 16, 2014
- Book Review: Bewitching Bead and Wire Jewelry - July 10, 2014
- Book Review: Never Been Stitched by Amanda Carestio - June 23, 2014