FOUNDATION PAPER PIECING
Learn the technique to piece each row
Foundation Paper Piecing designs are constructed from several smaller pieces to build a bigger design. Those smaller pieces are labelled with numbers, which you sew together in numerical order.
When you are sewing, you will sew along the printed lines – the FPP template will face you right side up and the fabric that you will sew onto it will be right side down, with its wrong side against the back of the template. The finished sewn block will be a reverse image of the template. In this technique focus, we are going to use the Heart block from Row 1 as an example, but the steps will be the same for any FPP template. One way to prevent yourself from cutting fabric too small is printing out an extra paper template, cutting the pieces out and using them as templates for cutting out your fabric, adding the seam allowance around each piece.
PIECING THE TEMPLATE
Start by finding Sections 1 and 2 on the paper template and taking the fabric pieces for each section. For this template, Section 1 is a background fabric square and Section 2 is a print fabric square.
Hold up your template against a light source – windows are great for this! The right side of the paper needs to be facing you. Take the background fabric square and hold it to the wrong side of the paper template, with the wrong side of the fabric touching the paper and the right side of the fabric facing the light source. Hold it against the window to make sure that the fabric covers all of the paper square and has at least ¼in seam allowance all around. Pin in place (Fig A). 4
Place the Section 2 fabric RST with the Section 1 fabric, aligning the raw edges on the side where Sections 1 and 2 meet. Pin in place along the line between the two sections. Now you can fold back the Section 2 fabric and check that once sewn, it will cover Section 2 completely, including the ¼in seam allowance on all edges (Fig B).
Set the stitch length on your sewing machine so that it is smaller than usual. Susi recommends 1.5. This will make it easier to remove the templates later, as your needle will perforate the paper as you sew. Sew along the line on the template
between Sections 1 and 2, backstitching at both ends to secure (Fig C).
Fold back the print fabric and make sure that it covers all of Section 2 with a in seam allowance all round (Fig D). Then fold back the template on the seam to expose the seam allowance. Trim it to approx 1/8in. Press the print fabric towards Section 2 (Fig E). 7
Repeat steps 4–6 to piece the remaining sections on the template, working in numerical order (Figs F–H).
Trim the pieced block along the dashed outer edge of the paper template.
Remove the template to complete one Heart block (Fig I).
Mix and match the print fabrics within each row