About a week ago I showed a little sneak peek at the Mini Madness project I was working on. As you can see, I actually made three! It has been quite some time since I made a mini quilt and I forgot how fast and fun they are to make!
During the month of March the Island Batik ambassadors have been sharing all kinds of mini paper pieced project. Paper piecing is something I enjoy once I get started……sometimes the “getting started” is the hard part. Do you like paper piecing? Have your ever tried it? Using batiks from Island Batik makes paper piecing easy as both sides look the same.I decided to use my Country Birds pattern as inspiration for a mini. I still have my original Electric Quilt file so I just created a new block and then sized it as a mini. Here is what I came up with and I decided to do a little tutorial.
If you have never done any paper piecing but have thought about trying it….this would be the perfect project for you! I decided to only paper piece the diamond sections and just piece the rest of the sections. Easy peasy!
Mini Birds Paper Piecing Tutorial
Size 6″ x 6″
Yardage – scraps of batiks, jelly roll strips or fat quarters.
I mentioned that I like to use newsprint paper because it is very easy to tear off. If you are trying this for the first time just use regular printer paper.
The first thing you want to do is crease the paper on all of the lines that you will stitch. It makes it so much easier.
I also like to use Washable Elmer’s Glue to glue the first piece to the back of the paper.
Cut your fabrics pieces in the following measurements to make it easy to paper piece the sections.
- Cut the center (1) section 2” x 2 ½” – you will need 4 for the block.
- Cut the other pieces – 1 ½” x 2 ¼” – you will need 16 for the block.
- Use 4 of the sections for your block – I have included 2 extra for practice on the worksheet.
- Use a very short stitch length on your sewing machine.
- Press and trim – make sure to trim on the ¼” line.
You can see that the fabric pieces are a little over-sized. There is nothing worse that stitching a line, folding over the fabric and find out you didn’t cover the whole section.
Be very careful when you go to trim your pieces. When I went to cut the last one I wasn’t paying attention…..I was probably day dreaming…and look what I did! I cut on the stitching line – not the ¼” line. I’m not going to tell you how many times I do this when paper piecing!
That is all the paper piecing to do for this mini! Are you going to try it?
Now you need to cut the following:
- Cream – cut 8 – 1 ¼” x 2”
- Color A – 1 – 2” square
- Color B – 4 – 2” squares
- Color C – 4 – 1 ¼” squares
Use a ¼” seam allowance.
In this sample I stitched the dark blue for the (C) 1 ¼” squares, join one to a 1 ¼” x 2″ cream.
Stitch a purple print (B) 2″ square to a 1 ¼” x 2″ cream.
Sew the sections together as shown in the diagram.
It takes no time at all to quilt a little mini! I cut 2 ¼” strips for the binding.
For this one I did some straight line quilting, I cut the backing 1 inch bigger and then folded it to the front for my binding.
Another experiment….I did a single fold binding on this one – I’m not crazy about it. This was a square block before I did the straight line quilting. It is a little wonky now but that is okay.
Here is a photo showing the backs of the 3 Mini Bird quilts. Did you notice that they aren’t identical? If you go back to the very first photo you’ll see how I changed color placement and section placement.
This might be my favorite, what do you think?
This would make a perfect first time paper piecing project!