You can find my review of Penny Layman's The Paper Pieced Home here. This post is number six on the blog hop for the book. In the interests of disclosure, Penny sent me a copy of her book and I don't offer even the slightest pretence at a lack of bias. I am totally biased, Penny is a super talented designer, I am happy to work in partnership with her in Sew-Ichigo and a to call her a friend. Taking all that into consideration, even if I barely knew her, The Paper Pieced Home is amazing and should be in every foundation piecing fan's personal library. Her designs constantly make me smile and that's what I look for in great design.
I like simplicity in paper pieced designs. I don't like over engineered blocks or hyper realistic imagery, instead I look for character, wit and humour. Paper piecing has a lot of limits- curves and Y seams are tricky to achieve and some details are better added using embroidery or appliqué rather than a tortuous number of seams. The skill when designing a block is to capture the essence of the item you are trying to represent and construct it as simply as possible: the design is taken to the bare essentials and given a twist or quirk to make you recognise and love it. Nobody likes a bulky cluster of tiny seams all coming together at one point or five sections where there could be two. The best designs have all their section lines and seams in just the right places, to enhance the design, not detract from it.
I mentioned how much I liked this lion block when I wrote my review so naturally, this was the block I chose for the hop. All the designs are avaible on a CD included with the book so no need to faff with a photocopier or scanner. This is a 10 inch block which prints on two sheets joined together. Some of the sections spread on to both sheets with an overlap to join together so I printed out both sheets and traced the design on to velum with a Pigma micron pen so that the main horizontal seam would be evenly spread between both bits of paper and avoid joining sheets of paper. It worked really well.
After that, the piecing was very straightforward. There are a lot of sections but the design flows logically and there are only four fabrics involved, and they were all either solids or ditsy prints that worked in any direction.
There are plenty of tick marks to align the seams and no seam rippers were called for! The background floral is from Ayumi's Lighthearted collection for Kokka and the orange floral is a vintage 60s fabrics found at a bootsale! I love the final block. One of my top tips for paper piecing is to make the block edge seam allowance much bigger than you need so you can trim the block down to the perfect size. I think I will make it into a sewing machine cover for my Bernina with lots of vintage style prints and some linen, although all the blocks in the 'Playtime' chapter would make a wonderful child's quilt/playmat.
You can find the book details below:
By Penny Layman
The publishers also have a copy of the book to giveaway- a physical copy for a USA winner or a PDF digital version for a winner outside USA. For a chance of winning, leave a comment below- how about telling me your favourite design era? 1970s, Edwardian? Whatever it is, let me know! Make sure I can contact you by email via your profile or comment. Winner will be chosen by random number generator a week today.
Enjoy the other stops on the hop!
The Paper-Pieced Home
Blog Tour Schedule
3/16 McCall’s Quilting / Sewing Machine Block
3/17 Love of Quilting / Review
3/17 Sandi Sawa Hazlewood of Crafty Planner / Watering Can Block
3/18 Quilty Pleasure (Quiltmaker blog) / Review
3/18 Imagine Gnats / Rotary Phone Block
3/20 Verykerryberry / Lion Block
3/21 Artisania / Cast-Iron Skillet Block
3/23 Where the Orchids Grow / Lamp Block
3/24 Katie Blakesley of Swim Bike Quilt / Layer Cake Block
3/24 House on Hill Road / Oven Mitt Block
3/24 Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced / BBQ Grill Block
3/26 Pink Penguin / Allie-Gator Block
3/26 A Happy Stitch / Giraffe Block
3/27 Bijou Lovely / Jar Block
3/27 Two Little Banshees / Saucepan Block
3/27 Charise Creates / Espresso Mug Block
3/30 Karen Lewis Textiles / Couch Block
3/31 Poppyprint / Clawfoot Tub Block
3/31 One Shabby Chick / Stack of Books Block
3/31 During Quiet Time / Sleeveless Dress Block
4/06 Pat Sloan The Voice of Quilting / Author Podcast Interview