Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Outlined Plus QAL

Welcome to the second post for the Outlined Plus Quilt Along!

Have you started sewing yet? I'm up to 15 blocks! Halfway there!

I have a few simple piecing tips to share today, though the pattern is definitely not a difficult one. I don't know about you, but I always find the easiest way to piece a block when I get to about the second to last!

Here are some things I found helpful so far...

If you've cut your directional fabrics like I described in my last post, you definitely want to try to keep them in the correct position as you sew them. I like to lay out my pieces for a block on my sewing table (or one of those block holders would be great for this). Then I come up with a mantra for the order in which I'm going to pick them up. Mine is ~ Top, Bottom, Left, Right. If I stay consistent, I always know which piece goes where.

Let's talk about pressing. Do you press your seams to one side or open? I do both. I like to press open, because it creates a nice flat block especially when there are lots of bulky seams. I like to press to one side when I need to accurately match seams.

In this block I've pressed many of the seams open. But there's a seam where the top and bottom pieces match the center rectangle. I really want that seam to match perfectly so the "plus" doesn't have any visual bumps in it. So in Step 2, I've pressed my seams toward the D pieces. And in Step 4, I've pressed the seams toward the H pieces. I find more accuracy when the seams are opposing. They seem to nest and lock together.

As far as pinning goes, I don't pin excessively. But pinning is helpful at those seams that you want to match up. I don't sew over my pins, so my method of pinning is to place my pin just past the seam I'm trying to match. That way the intersection is sewn before I take the pin out. And speaking of pins - you really want nice thin, fine pins for piecing that are super sharp. A dull or thick pin will just shift your intersection and may do more harm than good. My favorite are Little House, but there are other brands that are great. Just be sure they're a good quality brand and say fine pins on the package.

{FYI - Little House pins are on sale at Fat Quarter Shop this month!}

I'm pretty pleased with how my seams have matched up!

Have you found any helpful tips for making the block? If so, share them in the comments so we can all benefit. And don't forget to share your progress on Instagram #outlinedplusquilt

Thanks again for quilting along!


  1. This is insanely cute so far. I love it.

  2. Thank you for all the helpful tips. I will have to check out those pins. Also, I really like your fabric choices! Can't wait to see the completed quilt.

  3. It is so beautiful! Your tips on lining up patterns in the last post are genius. Thank you.

  4. Great tips! I too almost always press my seams open.


Thanks so much for taking time to comment!