Tuesday, October 04, 2016

EPP - eeeeeeek!

Anna Levens and I are still getting to know each other. Colours continue to be switched up and blocks are being started, but the biggest change is that I am trying my hand at English Paper Piecing (EPP) for the first time, a bit of a change for me because I always just eyeball my seam allowance and hand stitch my hexies together without papers.

Lori Holt has a great tutorial, so I followed it (its from 2010 - how behind the times am I????). Thankfully these hexies are about twice the size of the ones I'm using for Minnie.

Her suggestion of using a paper clip to keep things aligned was really helpful, especially if you use a coated one. I set the first batch up using a different clip for each hexie but after that I found that it was just as fast to transfer the same clip from one hexie to the next.
They come together fairly quickly but I find myself frustrated with all of the steps - clipping, basting, removing papers, pressing, and finally sewing them together. I'd much rather just sit down and sew. But I couldn't figure out any other way to get a good clean line along the inside edge of the hexie frame so I'll stick with it, for the centre panel at least. After that I'll resort to my old ways :).

Lori also had the great idea of enlisting her young daughter to baste. At 10 cents a hexie I think its a great idea, but I'm not sure that the Official Cookie Tester would be lining up to do that for me.

I have a paper punch that is the just the right size so I've been cutting papers from junk mail and magazine reply mail cards - the bane of my existence. Unfortunately, I have had really lousy luck with this brand. There is a small piece in the handle mechanism that breaks off when you squeeze it (a design flaw - I think this is the third time around for me) which totally eliminates your ability to get a clean cut, but I managed to punch out 18 hexies, trim them with scissors, and I just continue to press them with the iron and re-use them.....M


Kyle said...

Your first frame looks crisp and a good contrast with the large floral. Sorry the punch didn't work as planned. Paying for basting help sounds like a great plan, but I don't think Running Man would consent either.

Angie in SoCal said...

Those Fiskar template punches have a life time warranty. Think about getting a replacement. Lovely project you are making!

Jan said...

I would take the punch back to where you bought it. I have several of the fiskar brand punches in different size hexagons and have never had any trouble with mine. I have punch lots of hexis. Thanks for the idea for the junk mail recycling.

Julierose said...

I use regular freezer paper for my hexie papers--then just iron them onto the back of the fabric and cut 1/4" +/- around and baste--gives me a nice clean line...you may want to try it--I leave the papers in until the piece is all together... your blocks are just gorgeous...hugs, Julierose