Thursday, September 30, 2021

Pieced backings - Using strips tutorial

 I love the pieced backing on the new Pinwheel Pivot quilt. It was super easy to do and I'm going to show you how I made it.

Pieced Backing tutorial

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I used part of a fat eighth bundle of All Hallows Eve fabric for the front of Pinwheel Pivot.

Pinwheel Pivot

As a quilter that doesn't like to have a lot of fabric sitting that meant finding something to use the rest of the fat eighths for.

Pieced backing

Since every quilt needs a back, that was my answer. However I didn't want to sew squares together, I wanted something with a little more oomph.

Pieced Backing Tutorial

What that meant was cutting each fat eighth into strips.

Pieced Backing Tutorial

I folded the fat eighth the long way, trimmed the top just a bit to make it straight and then gave myself another straight edge to work with by trimming off just a smidge from the side. For the least amount of waste I cut my strips 1 7/8" wide.

Pieced Backing Tutorial

Once all the fat eighths were cut down to strips I began sewing them end to end. I didn't go in any particular order, just grabbed one from a stack and another from a different stack and stitched.

Pieced Backing Tutorail

I continued to grab strips and sew them until they were all sewn into pairs. Then I pressed, it doesn't matter which way you press.

Pieced backing tutorial
That's me, waaaay at the end.

Once pressed I continued to sew strips together end to end.

Pieced backing tutorial

I made the 42" square of Pinwheel Pivot so I needed 50" wide backing. Once I had stitched all of the strips together I began to sub-cut them into 50" strips. I did it this way so that I wouldn't have to worry about the seams lining up.

Pieced backing tutorial

You don't have to worry if you get a piece that is really small as you sub-cut because these will be trimmed off when you square up to put the binding on. Note the little pink sticky. I put that there so that I could measure the strips quickly.

Pieced Backing Tutorial

*Tip* When pressing the length of the strips, finger press the seams before using the iron to help keep them from getting stretched out.

Once I had sewn all of the strips I had together I knew I wouldn't have enough for the length of the quilt. I added yardage to top and bottom because strips can get warped and pulled and this gave me a strong base for the top edges. Notice I wasn't too worried about the strips ending perfectly together because this is made larger than needed and would be trimmed down.

Pieced Backing Tutorial

For this quilt I ended up spray basting instead of pinning, but to line up the strips and to top it doesn't matter which you do.

Pieced Backing Tutorial

Once I had the backing and batting basted together I laid out the top. I simply lined up the seam of the pieced rows with a seam of the pieced back, and counted to make sure both sides followed the same number of rows. Easy peasy. If you wanted to make sure your quilt didn't shift you could put a pin in at the end of each row to make sure it stays with the back seam it is supposed to be aligned with.

Pieced Backing Tutorial

Strip pieced backing done, minimal left over fabric. One happy quilter.

Make something Extraordinary!


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