Sunday 3 February 2013

But Amy Gibson Said It Was Easy

Amy Gibson of Stitchery Dickory Dock is running the Sugar Block Club and I am a member. Each month we receive an email with details for the block of the month and a sweet recipe. My January block was a total success and I adore it. Now it is February.

You see, one of my sewing goals for 2013 was to try paper piecing. I really should have specified Foundation Paper Piecing, not English Paper Piecing because I hate hand sewing. But I digress.

Fabric for my February SBC
The February Sugar Block Club block involves foundation paper piecing, and I watched Amy's Craftsy webcast of how to FPP and thought "I can do this." She promised it was easy. And it sure looks easy.

WARNING: Lots of progress pictures to follow.

The templates all trimmed and ready to go.
The fabric all cut and ready to paper piece.

A little glue and starting on A1 with the background fabric (I chose a newsprint instead of white) facing down.


Fold and add the colour of fabric you want (see that tiny hint of green?)

Fold back out and pin
After they were all sewn, in number order, this is what the front looked like
This is what the back looks like before you trim
Trim up along the trim lines (which allows for 1/4" seam allowance)
Here are the two halves of the small centre square

Does my pinning look like her pinning?
 And here is where it all went wrong. Where the swearing started and the yearning for a glass of wine started. Because despite my careful pinning, my first attempt looked like this:

Ach! Points don't match!

Start ripping
 On my second attempt the points didn't look all that much better. At this point I texted my friend C, who blogs over at The Edgy Perfectionist, with LOTS of swear words and pictures of my mismatched middle. What was especially irritating is that her centre block (because she is also doing the SBC) is beautiful and crisp and, of course, perfect. She talked me off the ledge (texted me off the ledge?) and encouraged my to try a third time. Which I never do. Because honestly, who will notice but me? But I dug in. And re-ripped. And resewed. And the points on time three, you ask? Well. They'll do. They are NOT perfect. But I was at the point where instead of enjoying the sewing I was HATING the sewing. That is my sign to stop and remember to sew because I like it.

And so, with the help of my ever-present feline helper:

I made my way through two more PP mini blocks (there are NINE in this darn block):
And after getting through these pathetic few blocks, I had to give up. My back was killing me and my patience was shot. And I was cursing C (and her perfect block) and Amy Gibson (and her "it's so easy!" tutorial).  So I decided to blog instead, about my misery, and tackle the rest of the block tomorrow. I'll let you know how it goes!

Overall, however, I have to say this about Foundation Paper Piecing: It is sort of easy. But it is VERY time consuming and fiddly and can get very irritating VERY fast. And matching points for a novice sewer is hell. I sure hope there aren't too many PP blocks this year!

Lynn (aka Buttons)


  1. Hilarious! Remember, it was the paper piecing that was the easy part. Matching seams is never easy!

  2. I am in love with the fabric you picked!!!