Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How do you chain sew?

Over the last few weeks I have been trying to work on my Route 44 quilt.  Basically the blocks are 4 patches - and I've been busy chain sewing them together.  I'm interested to know if there are any quilters out there reading...how do you chain sew?

Do you get all your pieces put together and pinned before you begin the sewing or do you just pin as you along (assuming you do pin).  Do you get all blocks sewn before pressing?  Do you sew one side and then the next side or do you press between the two sides?  I'm always interested to know how others are doing it out there.  Wondering if there are more efficient ways to make things easier and faster.
Per Carrie's advice in our Route 44 class - she suggested using Niagara as a spray starch.  During my Schnibble mystery class I took in January - where I spent an hour sewing things together wrong and the next hour unpicking my blocks, I noticed a girl who was sewing her rows together perfectly.  I asked her why she was having NO problems whatsoever when I was struggling so much.  She said it was because she was using a spray starch for the first time and couldn't believe what a difference it was making in her sewing. No fabrics were pulling, things seemed straighter....she was a believer and after seeing her rows so was I!  So I bought this and I've been using it on my blocks....what a difference a spray makes!  I too am a believer.  I found mine at Walmart - and next time I'll be buying a case!
So I've finished my first round of 100 4 patch blocks and surrounded them with the half square triangles. They are all sew, pressed, and trimmed.  I am now moving on to my next set of 100 4 patch blocks.  I hope to have those completed this week.

I've also been working on some quilting.  Seems when it rains it pours.  I have nothing to quilt all of 2011 and some how at the end of March was bombarded with quilts.  I'm trying to keep up and falling short!  So off to quilt some more this week!  Hopefully when my back gets tired, or I'm on yet another boring work call, I can fit in some chain sewing and get all my blocks done!

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