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pmriley
March 20th, 2010, 01:27 AM
Ok ladies, another newby question. After I have cut all my squares out, how can I keep them aliegned and straight while I sew them? I have tried pinning them but they seem always seem to slightly shift during swing. Any advice would be helpful.

Thanks,
Mary

quiltingtrish
March 20th, 2010, 10:15 AM
Teaching the kids to sew at school, I noticed 2 things they are trying to do that they shouldn't.
When they pin 2 pieces together, they put the pins too far down from the top of where they are trying to pin them together. The closer to the top of the fabric at the raw edges, the better.
And, then when they go to sew, they pull the pins out way too early and it shifts the fabric by the time the needle gets to that part.

Hugs,
quilting trish

copehome
April 1st, 2010, 05:24 PM
Mary - I use the sticky finger stuff (you might have seen bank tellers use it while counting money-you can get it at an office supply store) - it gives my fingers just enough grip to guide & align the fabric while sewing and it doesn't leave any residue.

ktbb
April 4th, 2010, 03:36 PM
Ok ladies, another newby question. After I have cut all my squares out, how can I keep them aliegned and straight while I sew them? I have tried pinning them but they seem always seem to slightly shift during swing. Any advice would be helpful.

Thanks,
Mary

Here are a couple of things to consider...if your machine provide the capability of adjusting the pressure of your pressure foot try doing that. The foot pressure might be set too tight (some machines don't have this feature, so if your's doesn't, don't moan, you can live without it. Next, until you get more experience, you might consider using a walking foot - while this is usually used for seams that are thicker or for slick fabrics, it might be what you need to try until you get some experience...none of the walking feet that I own have the precise 1/4 mark on them for traditional quilting seam allowance, but like me, you can probably find a mark on your foot (or put one on there) by which to judge the quarter inch.

I also found a wonderful stylus to use as an extra finger to maintain control of the fabric closer to the needle without putting my real finger at risk of being sewn thru (been there, done that, not fun!) Many sewers use a bamboo skewer, which is really cheap and found at grocery stores and since it's wood, if the needle does hit it the skewer will break before the needle will! I found a wonderful stylus that I use - wooden handle with what looks like a large needle stuck in the end of it so that I can use the point of the needle to hold the fabric in position very easily.

Lastly, consider the worst thing that can happen if the fabric does shift and whether that "worst thing" can be successfully dealt with after the fact. On several of my projects I have slight shifting even with all the care I take. Sometimes I can square up the block and cut off the extra, etc...just don't plan on being sloppy and then trimming to make it look good as one of my students does...THAT makes for some interesting blocks!!!

toggpine
April 5th, 2010, 02:08 AM
Most of the templates I use have these really great corner systems and they match up at the front and back edge. It really seemed to help keep everything where it belonged. I am constantly checking to see that the fabric edges are aligned.
I have the quarter inch "mark" on the machine and I know where it is when I feed the fabric under the foot. I too have found that the skewer/stylus has been helpful to feed the trailing edges of a piece through the machine.

Nesting the seams and pinning those together to prevent shifting also helps. It is easier to ease a small section of mismatched fabric than trying to figure out what to do with an inch at the end. This also keeps your intersections and points where they are supposed to be in the pattern. I pull my pins before they go under the needle. This keeps the needle sharp and my pins straight and smooth.