Friday, December 23, 2011

Machine Setup for Piecing Diamonds and Half Hexies

Machine Setup for 

Piecing Diamonds and Half Hexies

Setting Up Your Machine

Every time I sew with diamonds or half hexagons that have a 30°, 60°, or 120° angles, I will set up markers on my machine so that I don't need to draw my 1/4" seams on every piece of fabric.
**Markers for 45° angle Y Seams will be slightly different.

Things you will need: 
1. Painter's tape,
2. Pencil,
3. Diamond with your seam allowance markings

When we sew diamonds and half hexies, it is best to always start sewing at the small angle end of the piece sewing towards the wide end of the angle.  It is easier to grab the fabric and the feed dogs do not twist the fabric as it would if we were nearing the small angle.

To set up our machine, let's pretend to sew. I found it easier for my students if they do not have thread in their machine:

With the small angle of your diamond piece, we want to put our needle down in the X you have marked for your seam. Leave your presser foot up. **Notice I have two seam markings, ½” and ¼”. No matter the size of your seam allowance, ½” or a ¼” or ” – it all works the same way.

Straighten out your diamond, so that the edge of fabric we sew on is straight.

Place a piece of painter’s tape along the edge of your fabric, the same edge you are going to sew along. **If your fabric does not go past your feed dogs, do not cover the feed dogs or the hole where the feed dogs go with tape, but go as close to them with the tape as you are able.

Draw a line on your tape next to the point of your diamond. Any time you place a piece to sew, this line will always line up with the point of your small angle of your diamond.

Now, pull your needle back up, hum a little tune and pretend to sew along the edge of your diamond on down to the wide angle of your diamond. (i.e. Slide your diamond down to the wide angle)

Place your needle down in the X you drew in the wide angle of your fabric. Leave your presser foot up and straighten up the edge of your fabric.

Draw a line on your tape at the edge of your fabric. Any time you stop, you want your fabric to stop on that line OR within a stitch length before that line. You do not want to go past that line.

Done! Now sew on!

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