That being said, every once in a while I love to 'go back' in time! Try something traditional, use fabric I don't normally use or learn a new technique. I have always wanted to try paper piecing. Having seen so many gorgeous blocks lately, it only fueled my curiosity.
Paper piecing, foundation piecing or flip and stitch is a traditional method that has been on rise lately. Fabrics are sewn to a foundation, either temporary or permanent creating perfect blocks every time.
I was asked if I could make a couple pillows using a Periwinkle Star block. After looking at the picture and with the help of Google, I decided this was the perfect time to stretch myself. Jump in. Go for it. This block appeared to be the perfect start of my paper piecing adventure. I watched a video...I could do it! Well, I likely would have figured it out after many, many attempts. It wasn't exactly detailed or easy to follow.
|Hummingbird Block (aka Periwinkle Star)|
When I saw that Rita from Red Pepper Quilts had just written a tutorial for the exact block, I was jumping up and down with relief and excitement! I downloaded the template and soaked up the tutorial information. The Hummingbird block and Periwinkle Star are one and the same. Good for me and my new found paper piecing confidence!
I began the process by printing the template and trying a couple test pieces.
Make sure you print the template at 100%! I didn't for my test pieces and I ended up with blocks that were 1/2" smaller.
Knowing that I was going to be using a variety of feedsack prints, I paired those with a good selection of coordinating solids all surrounded by a bright white.
I pieced the first part and was so pleased with the results! Its time consuming, but there is something very rewarding about the entire process!
Another good thing to remember: when sewing your fabric on to the paper, use small stitches. It really makes removing the paper so much easier.
When done correctly, this is what your seams look like. I seriously never thought I could make cute 'little squares' like that!
I ended up quilting 1/4" on the inside of the white. I was provided a picture of a vintage quilt, and wanted to stay as close to the original as I could.
I made two 18" x 18" pillow covers with a classic envelope closure. Because the blocks were going to be 5" when finished, I added a 2" border around the center panel. I think they turned out great. I think they will be well loved when they make it to their new home.
I love these pillows. I can't wait to make this block again or even try something else! I need to start looking for my next project in paper piecing. I think I am kinda addicted now! Learning to paper piece isn't so bad. I would highly recommend finding a great tutorial (like the one above) if you are new to the process like I am. It totally save me and covered every single detail from start to finish.
Paper Piecing. Using a block drawn or printed and sewn on paper