Step 6: Get Your Curve On
I hope as you work through step 5 the sections of your mod-mood quilt are beginning to fall into place like pieces of a puzzle. If your sections are curved like mine it can be a little tricky sewing it all together. I was able to machine piece most of the gentle, smaller curves but larger, complex, and severe curves required hand work. Here’s a quick overview of curved piecing techniques, by machine and by hand, to help your process along.
Machine Pieced Curves:
Try sewing your curves by machine if they are gentle and there are no inset corners.
A. With right sides facing up, position the two sections you are joining so that they meet and overlap.
B. Using a rotary cutter or scissors cut the curve. Remove the excess overlapped edges. Butt the cut curved edges together and mark with chalk. The two pieces should be like yin to yang.
C. Place right sides together, matching the chalk lines. Ease in fabric as you place the pins perpendicular and about a 1/4 inch in from the edge. The tighter the curve the more pins you will need.
D. Sew a 1/4 inch in from the edge along the pin line. You do not need to remove the pins as you sew. Placing them perpendicular to the edge, rather than at a slant, greatly reduces your chance of breaking a needle. Notice how one side of the seam is ruffled (above) and the other side is flat (below).
E. Open up the seam and iron flat. It’s almost like magic and oh so satisfying!
For another take on machine piecing curves visit Thea’s grannygoodstuff blog here. It’s good stuff!
Hand Pieced Curves:
When working with extreme curves or inset seams, it’s easier to sew them by hand.
A. Position the sections you are joining with right sides facing up. Place the top curved section so that it overlaps the bottom section by at least a 1/2 inch.
B. Finger press as you turn under a 1/4 inch along the edge of the top curved section. Pin into place.
C. With a neutral color thread that blends with the colors of the top section use a blind applique stitch to sew down the tuned under edge. Visit Marcia Hone’s Quilters Cache here for a solid tutorial on sewing a blind applique stitch.
D. Once you have hand appliqued your curve, remove the pins. Flip to the backside of your quilt top, and CAREFULLY trim the overlapping material to a 1/4 inch from the hand stitching line. Iron your curve in place to finish the process.
Step 7 is a big surprise, so stay tuned!
Make Your Own Modern Mood Quilt
If you are entertaining the idea of making your own mod-mood quilt, I want to hear from you. What strikes your fancy? What’s holding you back? Join the challenge! Share images of your process on the Mod Mood Quilt Flickr pool. Or grab a Mod-Mood Quilt button to post on your blog and join my blog roll.
If you are already working on a mood quilt, post an update or any questions you have about the process or techniques and I will respond.
Check out my finished Modern Mood Quilt.