Shaky centres come together.

Yesterday, when I was looking for a pattern for a seven pointed star, I stumbled upon a beautiful flower like star. I knew right away I NEEDED to make one (or maybe more)

Shaky centres.

I found it on this website. It was my intention to do a tutorial on paper piecing with this block. I made many pictures of all of the steps. So, frantic piecing followed …. new ideas formed and added to my to-patch-and-quilt-list… fabric pulled from the stack for more stars later on…. and then the pattern did not match up right in the middle. Everything else came together just right, just not the centre. I was so happy that all of the other seams were matching that I did not even see the missmatching centre untill the very last.

2013-01-21-paper piecing modern star 04  2013-01-21-paper piecing modern star 02 2013-01-21-paper piecing modern star 03

I do not know what happened. I presume that one or more of the following things happened:

– (MY FIRST GUESS)  The fabric (greenish) in the centre was too stretchy –> pulled out of shape while sewing. Should I draw a pattern with the seam allowance and sew the fabric to the paper 1/8 inch from the side??? Might be hard to get the paper off later, but the fabric would not shift. Or is it just the case that I need to starch that fabric?

– The pattern was not pinned tightly enough on the centre bits, so it shifted –> slightly different angles on the centre points.

– I did not cut the pattern precisely enough. (don’t think that half a millimeter makes such a difference)

So, I have tried again! Success!!!  This is what I did:

– I changed the original pattern a little bit. I redrew it in Adobe Photshop with thinner lines and made it even more precise.

– I starched the fabric so it would not be so stretchy.

– I kept pins in the centre points at all times. MORE PINS!

– I paid more attention to the centre points while piecing the four parts together. Used MORE PINS!!

– When piecing two tiny pieces in the centre together, I pressed the seams away, so I had more room! Used even MORE PINS!!!

2013-01-21-paper piecing modern star 06

I have not made a whole new star, but you can see the difference, I hope. I am much happier!

What do you do with blocks that are not good enough for the project you are doing? Do you throw them away or keep them for changing later on?

Esther

4 thoughts on “Shaky centres come together.

  1. Hi! I”m happy to see that someone else has tried out my star pattern. I have had this happen previously on stars that have many pieces coming together in the center. In my experience it’s usually a combination between sewing the pieces on the bias edge (necessary in this block), and precision of seam allowances. If it helps I press those joining seams open and press them well. You might need to adjust the seam allowance in the final seam by just a little bit depending on how the other pieces have come together. Go slowly and press a lot! 🙂 I hope you have better luck next time!

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