June : Circling the Brain QAL with Patti Auten


 By Patti Auten

Hello again my QALers! Hope all is Circling Your Brain and you’re coming up with your cool designs.

By now you should have done the following:

  1. Picked your color palette and fabrics.

  2. Started working on your center quarter pieces (don’t sew them together into a circle yet!!! Unless you like to pick out seams!)

  3. Started working on your first ring.

If you’ve gotten that far, congratulations! Make sure to press your pieces well (but don’t IRON them heavily as things can be on the bias and will get pulled out of shape). If you have some starch or Best Press, that helps to hold the shape of your pieces. DON’T remove the paper until you are getting ready to sew the center quarter pieces to the first ring.

As mentioned last month, we all learned the RIGHT SIDE RULE, aka only look at the right side of your presser foot as you sew the curve and maintain a consistent ¼ inch seam. This bears repeating and works for all kinds of sewing. So before moving on, pin and sew your first ring to the center quarter circle – all four of them. Make sure to press that seam back AWAY from the center and square up your pieces to a lovely 90 degree angle.

This month, we will start working on the second ring, the larger one. The instructions are the same as the smaller first ring.

If you are moving ahead and have your first rings sewn to your center pieces and then get your larger second rings done – STOP before sewing your second ring to your first ring. I found it was much easier to sew my second ring onto the outside fabric first, square those pieces up and then proceed to sew the second ring/outside piece to the first ring/center piece. Also, if you are ready to sew your larger ring to your backing, here’s a few tips.

  1. Fold your ring in half and then in half again. Mark with pins. Do the same with your outer piece. Those will enable you to line them up with the outer piece.

  2. DON’T PULL ON YOUR OUTER PIECE!! This is very important. Most of us that have an outer piece that’s just a solid piece of fabric will have a bias edge to work with when pinning the second ring on. Make sure to line up your pins and then GENTLY ease your pieces together. Pulling on the outside piece will cause rippling and warping and generalized unhappiness after sewing.

  3. Press your curved seam toward the outside.

  4. Don’t forget to square up your second ring/outside units at a 90 degree angle. Careful squaring and trimming will eventually give a circle that will lie flat!

  5. As usual, bring your project to the next meeting! Post on Instagram and on our Members Only SFMQG Facebook page along with any questions or concerns!  Circle Away!!!

 Any questions? Please contact Patti on our SFMQG Members only page, by FB messenger or by email at patriciaauten@bellsouth.net Happy sewing!