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Trimming appliqued quilt blocks

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Janice D. Green Posted: Tue, Jul 19 2011 11:00 PM

When I started learning to do hand applique quilt blocks I was encouraged to make them with 1" seams. The person who recommended this to me knew little or nothing about my skills to do this and was worried that I would have many pieced highly puckered and would need the extra margin of safety. I now have to trim away a lot of excess fabric on my hexagon shaped pieces. Because everything is hand stitched, I am concerned about what will happen when I cut away the knots that are at the ends of the stitching. I was encouraged to make a double stitch every three stitches to keep any threads that may break later from unraveling. I'm thankful for that, but wonder if there is something I can do to better secure these cut threads. Perhaps a touch of glue on the thread outside the machine stitched seam would work. Any recommendations? Here is an example of one of the pieces.

Janice 

 

Bible Quilts, www.biblequilts.com

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gini replied on Tue, Jul 19 2011 11:41 PM

janice,  all the threads secured by the knots will unravel if the knots are cut off.   i cut my applique blocks 1 inch bigger, but i don't applique out to the edges. so what to do in your case?   first, if i understand you right, this quilt will be only used as a teaching aid, right.   in that case, you may get by, because it isn't getting a lot of heavy use.  but i wouldn't trust it.  if it were mine,  instead of using glue, i would start an inch or so in at every edge a knot has been removed and overstitch those areas.  

gini in north idaho

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Thank you Gini,

The initial use for this quilt will be to carry and display as I market my book, The Creation, and encourage families and youth groups to try making Bible quilts. But I hope it will become a family heirloom that will be used by my great grandchildren some day.

I had also considered machine stitching a second or third time around just outside each appliqued seam that crosses the edge of the block. I don't believe this is what you are suggesting. 

I won't trim each piece the same distance from the edge, so I think I will trace my template for my final block in the position where I want to cut it and then restitch the applique seams one inch from just inside that cutting line. Is this what you meant by overstitching? This seems reasonable to me.

Janice 

 

Bible Quilts, www.biblequilts.com

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gini replied on Wed, Jul 20 2011 11:41 AM

janice, if you haven't trimmed your blocks yet. you're ok.  jyou should be able to apply the sashes where you want them and you will have large seam allowances on the back.    if your sashes are wide enough to cover the seam allowances it should work fine. press the seams to the sashes.   looking at the color of your fabrics i don't think your seam allowances will show through, but   if the seam allowances show too much through to  the front, you can cut hexagons the finished size of your blocks and put it on the inside of the blocks and under the seams so they don't show through.   you could use the tan fabric you've already bought, or find  really cheap muslin for the job.  it will make the quilt a little heavier, but will save some time. 

Janice D. Green:
where I want to cut it and then restitch the applique seams one inch from just inside that cutting line. Is this what you meant by overstitching?
  this is exactly what i meant.

gini in north idaho

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