Olive and Flo Handcraft - Blog

Economy Blocks - The Foundation Paper Pieced Option

Economy Blocks - The Foundation Paper Pieced Option

I've joined a fun swap with a US based quilter where we are swapping 6.5" Ruby Star economy blocks.  I've signed up to make a ridiculous number of blocks, so I need to be efficient and of course accurate.  Foundation Paper Piecing (FPP) is a template sewing method that is super for accuracy, but can be intimidating when you start - and a little counter-intuitive - especially when you are placing the fabric on the back of your paper template!

I can't pretend to be the best FPP-er around, but I have used the technique for several projects in the past (including the Violet Craft Elephant Abstractions) and can direct you to several resources if you are beginning your FPP journey - or indeed fancy joining in with the www.instagram.com/shemunkee_swaps

Great free economy block template and youtube technique video - https://sewing-lab.blogspot.com/2014/03/economyblocktutorial.html

Free beginner friendly hearts FPP pattern - https://payhip.com/b/iOLT

Great tutorial on how to paper piece - https://the-weekendquilter.com/blogs/blog/foundations-of-foundation-paper-piecing

Hope you decide to have a go at the foundation paper piecing method for sewing some blocks!

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Quilting Starters - Economy Blocks

Quilting Starters - Economy Blocks

I've recently joined a block swap with a fabulous US based quilter.  We are swapping economy blocks which are really great, simple multi sized blocks which can feature in your quilt as stand alone blocks or you can make a whole quilt with these useful babies!

The block that I am making is a 6.5" block which will finish at 6" in my quilt.  (A great way to think about blocks is as 'finished' and 'unfinished' - the unfinished block is the standalone block so when it is sewn into your finished piece will be 1/4" smaller all the way around - which is the 'finished' size).

I am deciding whether to use conventional piecing for my block - I am not convinced that I will be able to achieve a consistent block using this method and for block swaps it is so important to be consistently correct.  The alternative is foundation paper piecing (FPP) which is so much more accurate and can be quite a satisfying sew.  

I made a test block and apart from my rather shonky fabric placement, I reckon that will be the way to go.  I will create another blog post with some great free FPP patterns and a link to the free templates that I have found for the 6" block.

If you fancy joining the swap please go to www.instagram.com/shemunkee_swaps where you will find all of the details - if you are a Ruby Star lover this might be just what you are looking for!



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Quilting Starters - What is a Fat Quarter.

What is a Fat Quarter?

We generally sell our fabrics by the metric Fat Quarter (FQ) - unless otherwise stated - which measures approximately 55cm x 50cm but this may vary slightly depending on the width of fabric.  Essentially, this is a metre of fabric cut in half accross the full width of the fabric, and then cutting this piece in half again.  Fabric is generally 110cm (44inch) in width, hence the 55x50cm size.

I am from the 'cut it quite generously' school of thought which allows you to straighten any slightly errant cuts, whilst still retaining the full purchased size of fabric.  Many patterns, after all, require the full fat quarter!

If you see a Fat Eighth mentioned on our website, this is a piece approx 25cm x 55cm.  Although this is not the typical cut, we do sometimes cut large collections as Fat8s so that you can get a full collection or bundle at a more affordable price.


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