I am planning to open an Etsy shop soon (yay!) so I am preparing a list of items to make and sell. I have been wanting to make myself some patchwork potholders for a while now, so I figured if I was reaching for them, someone else must be too. Plus, I haven't seen any quite like this out there. I got the idea after reading this post from the purl bee. I fell in love with the quilt squares as individual pieces, and began to imagine them as potholders.
I also took this opportunity to learn how to hand piece and machine piece patchwork together. In the picture above, you can see the wobbly results of my impatient first attempt at machine piecing (the red star). Next I tried hand piecing , which resulted in the perfect blue star. sigh.
everything is lined up perfectly. it seems particularly special having been labored over by hand. the red one, not so much. when i machine stitched it, i thought pshaw! i don't need to use pins. i'm only sewing a few inches at a time. how very wrong i was.
the one problem with the hand piecing is the time commitment. I figured out a way to machine piece carefully, which seems to work well. i machine stitch from one corner of the design shape to the next, and back stitch each end. that way i don't have to sew across the seam allowance too. this requires precision, but it also allows the shapes to come together more smoothly. i also figured out that pins are necessary, even though the seam is only an inch or so. heh.
here is the result of machine piecing without sewing across the seam allowances (and, uh, using pins - ahee).
fast and perfect - yay! here it is all sewn up as a finished potholder:
the red one made a pretty potholder too despite the wonkiness.
i forgot to take a picture of the finished blue star potholder on its own, so those will be forthcoming with the next batch. And so you see what i plan to do with so many of those lovely free patches! that and other stuff like place mats, purses, and anything else I can think of.
more to come...