Let's jump right in!!
Today we will work on the arcs that are the rays of the suns.
Trim the section B arc - don't worry about precision it will get trimmed down as you go. Do be sure to trim on or outside the CUTTING LINE, outside the stitching line!
This is what it ought to look like - this just gets the bulk out of the way.
You need 1 color or grouping for the rays and 1 color for the background. This will be the background for the entire quilt, so it is best to use something with a very small pattern or solid. Be sure to keep color value in mind - you want those rays to really POP!
I used batiks from a jelly roll for my rays. Jellyrolls luckily are precut into 2.5 inch widths. This turns out to be a great width for both the background & rays. A 5.5 inch length works well for both ray & background fabrics.
If you notice the widest area you have to cover with fabric it is always important to remember that not only do you need the 1/4 inch seam allowance on each side of it, you also have to account for the folding over of the fabric when you paper-piece.
3. Prepare your machine:
Set the stitch length to about 1/2 of what you normally would use. I went from 2.5 to 1.5 or even a little less.
This placement of holes so close together creates a good perforation for removing the paper after you are done. If you use paper-piecing paper it tears away more easily as it is lighter than regular copy paper. Copy paper does increase the chances of ripping your stitches out so do be careful! Some people also suggest you increase the needle size - I haven't found that to be significant but - each to his own!
This close stitching does set up a small issue if you need to rip out your seam. Paper rips, stitches are hard to see and get at; not good. If you go slowly and are careful to have fabric cuts large enough to cover your pattern you should be fine.
I am skipping ahead a little here with the photos to better orient you. If you look closely at this photo you might see that you have 2 pieces of fabric and the pattern on top. On the very bottom is the fabric for the ray (#2) then on top of that - the background fabric (#1), then on the top, the paper.
Now let's backup to a point before getting here..
Take the pattern and crease along the line between 1 and 2 folding right sides together.
I really like to use the BACK of a seam ripper - it scores without puncturing the paper if you are CAREFUL! This creates a nice sharp crease to orient your fabric edge along.
Take 2 strips of fabric:
1 background and 1 ray fabric.
They are right sides together, with the wrong side of the background fabric on top.
- the folded paper with the #1 triangle underneath,
is on top of the 2 pieces from above.
- the fold is 1/4 inch away from the edge.
Check it and be sure you do! :)
CAREFULLY open the folded paper so the right side of the pattern is up and you still have the stitching line 1/4 inch from the edge of the stacked fabric pieces,
brings you to this:
Stitch along the line as shown.
It is important to stitch just over the intersecting stitching line at the top and bottom, but not more than a stitch or two.
Press the fabrics flat on the back of the pattern.
At this point you can see how the right side of the arc you are sewing is on the back of the pattern. Remembering this will help you to recall how the first strip of fabric is placed right side down and all the others are right sides up, to the back of the pattern piece, when you are stitching them together.
Now crease the line between rays 2 & 3 like you did between 1& 2 previously.
Using the Add A Quarter Inch Ruler or a quilting ruler cut the fabric away 1/4 inch away from the folded edge of the paper.
This is your new seam allowance for the next seam.
Add a strip of background fabric, right sides together with the colored fabric, aligning with the cut you just made,
Stitch along the line between 2 & 3.
Fold back over, press and it should look like this! I did trim the outer and inner curves so you can see the progression.
So - now you continue the steps and complete the arc!
1 down -
now sew 14 more!!!
NO problem- right?
Please leave a comment or email me with any questions or comments.
We will get together again and make these arcs into blocks!!
In one month on November 12 let's check-in.
Curved seam sewing ahead...