Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Stringpiecing tutorial

I had several requests to do a tutorial on Stringpiecing. There are several ways to do it, this is how I make this block. The best thing about stringpiecing is that you use leftovers from other projects, or older fabrics you bought and now don't really want to use. You can throw in leftover bindings too.

First you cut up your fabrics into various widths...I do anything from 1 1/2" - 3". You can do this after a project, so as to build a bunch of strings. They more sizes and colors the merrier.
I do mine on a foundation...can be muslin, an older fabric you now hate, or an old bedsheet. Cut the foundation 1/2" bigger than you want your finished block. These are about 10".

Lay your first piece across the center of the foundation, diagonally, right side up. If you use the same color (not necessarily the same fabric) for all the blocks, you can make a pattern with them. They do NOT have to be the same width.
Now take your next string and lay it on the first, matching one side, right sides together. Sew.
Now do the same with another fabric on the other side of your center, right sides together. Sew. Now press both of these.
Add another string to each side, right sides together, like you did before. Sew. Press.
Keep adding strings until you fill the foundation square. You can use crooked pieces, or purposely slant some of them for an interesting look.
Now flip it over and square up to 9 1/2", or whatever size you are making.
Isn't it pretty? Wasn't that easy? Continue to make blocks, in any arrangement of size and color until you have enough for what you want.
You can see how by using the same color in the centers, it makes a bolder pattern, even when they are not the same size. You get a nice pattern of colors with no worries about matching. You can look at the previous post to see the design forming with my sister's blocks.
I love doing this when I am in the mood to sew, but don't want to think, or can't think of what I want to do. They go quickly. I have made other block designs using this method, too. You could also sew your selvages together this way.

Now I am off to quilt!


Fiesta said...

ok Jean, add this to my things to do today. I guess I just better forget about sleeping.
Thank you for doing this.

Susan said...

Great tutorial, Jean! I was working on a string quilt like this with a group of friends yesterday. It went together quickly with five of us working on it and really turned out nice!

maggi said...

Thanks for sharing this Jean, so simple yet so effective.

holly said...

Thank you for sharing this. I have done this once and really enjoyed it. I plan on making more. I posted a link on my twitter to this tutorial. maybe it will bring some people your way.

Kama @ Today's Housewife said...

That's awesome! Thanks for sharing! I'm about to finish my 3rd quilt top and am already trying to think of what to do next. This would be great!!
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Carla said...

This is great, thank you! Can't wait to try it.

Kathie said...

great tutorial

moramargaritaster said...

Thanks,I visited again your blog and i saw this awesome tutorial.thanks for sharing? and also with your in put,you help me.

GardenofDaisies said...

Thanks for showing how to do this. use the same fabric in the middle....Makes perfect sense now, how quilters get that pattern through the middle of the quilt, even if the rest of the strips are a little different in size and don't match. ( I don't know why I can't figure things like this out. )

ga447 said...

I love doing this pattern, I like the way you started out with the dark fabric first.