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Ten Advantages of Hand Piecing

Summary

This is the 21st century and many quilters have fancier sewing machines than ever before, and less time, so why is hand piecing so popular? Read Why

Ten Advantages of Hand Piecing

This is the 21st century and many quilters have fancier sewing machines than ever before—and less time—so why is hand piecing so popular?

Well . . .  you don’t have to be a "hand piecing snob" to appreciate the benefits of sewing by hand for Lucy Boston Patchwork of the Crosses and Willyne Hammerstein's Millefiori Quilts.

Ten Advantages of Hand Piecing

 

Let's count down some of the advantages, 10 down to 1!

silhouettte

 

TEN: ECONOMY

Even our frugal “make do, use it up” ancestors would approve!

The tools are within anyone’s budget, even for an elegant hand piecing kit.

How to Sew Passacaglia by Hand

 

NINE: SIMPLICITY

The short video explains. Need we say more?

passa-rosette-outline

 

EIGHT: NO MATH

Hand piecing with freezer paper templates eliminates the math. This is the method taught in my Quilted Diamonds books.

Draw or trace or print the finished size of any design, (like this Passacaglia Rosette, on freezer paper to make templates without seam allowances, and add 0.25 inch seam allowances when you cut the fabric. Genius! There is no complicated measuring, addition or multiplication when you work with freezer paper templates.

If you have been taught to make templates for hand piecing that include seam allowances, there is a simpler way in Quilted Diamonds! Printing on fabric with Inklingo makes it even faster and more precise.

VIDEO - 300 Pieced Hexagons

 

SEVEN: DESIGN OPTIONS

Anything you can draw or trace or print on fabric or freezer paper and cut apart, can be hand pieced. 

The same freezer paper methods for blocks can be used to design settings too, like blouses and whole quilts.

(Freezer paper templates are great but it is even better when you print with Inklingo.)

potc paisley front

 

SIX: PERSONAL SATISFACTION

Hand piecing is an uncomplicated pleasure and it creates a wonderful sense of well-being. Each block brings a satisfying sense of completion. Where does productivity end, and obsession begin?

potc red back.jpg

 

FIVE: IMPROVE YOUR HAND QUILTING

The quilting is easier because hand pieced blocks can be trimmed and pressed in ways that machine pieced and English Paper Pieced blocks cannot. Improve your hand-eye coordination by piecing with a running stitch, and you will improve your quilting stitches too!

The prospect of such delights was very cheering.
Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice, Chapter 15.

The prospect of such delights was very cheering

 

FOUR: SOCIABLE AND THERAPEUTIC

Holding cool, silky cotton and a needle and thread, making stitches with ease, in a natural rhythm. Is there a felicity in the world superior to this?  Jane Austen, Sense & Sensibility, Chapter 9

Some quilters enjoy a ‘Zen’ experience when they hand quilt, but their hand quilting is limited by sore hands, or because a big quilt is not very portable. Enjoy the same soothing, therapeutic rhythm while you hand piece, without the hand strain, anywhere, anytime.

In schemes of sisterly happiness the hours flew along.
Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey, Chapter 15

Cumming's Version of Patchwork of the Crosses

 

THREE: FINISH MORE QUILTS

Hand piecers claim they complete more projects because they are so productive with their time, but they also accomplish more because their task is easier, especially with Inklingo! If the piecing and quilting are easier, you are more likely to finish.

Timmon's version 2 of Patchwork of the Crosses

Elizabeth could hardly help laughing at so convenient a proposal.
Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice, Chapter 59

 

TWO: PRECISION

Life is messy but seams can match up perfectly! The running stitch is very simple so quilters can make perfect points and exact matches without a tremendous amount of patience or skill. Since we only ever stitch through two layers, exact pinning is easy and precision is very satisfying.

If it is worth doing, it’s worth doing right.
Linda & Monkey

Timmon's version 3 of Patchwork of the Crosses

 

ONE: PORTABILITY

The number one benefit of hand piecing is that you can sew anywhere, anytime! Stitch in front of the TV, in the car, in a waiting room, at a daughter’s dance class or in the garden at Jane Austen’s House. Steal moments of enjoyment on a hectic day and feel the satisfaction as your quilt grows.

Such a combination of blessings as set her heart in aglow.
Jane Austen, Mansfield Park, Chapter 46

Patchwork of the Crosses Red

 

Final Thoughts

It has been more than 13 years since I taped an episode of Simply Quilts with Alex Anderson showing how to hand piece with freezer paper templates. We've come a long way since Quilted Diamonds with Inklingo.

Today, Lucy Boston Patchwork of the Crosses (POTC) and Passacaglia by Willyne Hammerstein (Millefiori Quilts) inspire a fresh look at this traditional technique. Hand piecing never goes out of style!

Cumming's Version of Patchwork of the Crosses - 2

 

I share one or two photos on Facebook every day, so please Like Inklingo on Facebook and choose Get Notifications.

New to Inklingo? Order and download FREE shapes and start sewing in the next few minutes. There are triangles, diamonds, and squares in the free collection—great for dozens of different blocks. http://lindafranz.com/shop/beginners/3

If you enjoyed this article, please log in and “rate” it. Thank you for visiting Inklingo on QuiltingHub!

Print Shapes With Inklingo

 

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Linda Franz

Linda Franz is the inventor of the amazing brand of Inklingo. It has revolutionized piecing and accuracy for the entire industry. Check out her brand page by clicking Inklingo

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