Speaking of Ironing...

Speaking of Ironing...

The way you press your project, step-by-step, can make a huge difference in the finished piece.

I always consider which way the seams should go when I’m planning a new pattern.

A lot of times, the pattern maker will tell you. Heather Peterson of Anka’s Treasures is a good example of this. Her patterns take no shortcuts on composition, but her directions are crystal clear and where it matters, she shows you which way to press those seams. This is “Floret” from her excellent book The Trendy Table 3.

Trendy Table 3 Book


Any time you see little arrows on a pattern illustration, it’s telling you which way to press.

Quilting pattern seam direction


Carefully pressed seams help ensure your blocks are all the same size.

Pressing and nesting seams every step of the way helps spot small problems before they become big ones.

When sewing blocks into rows I follow a simple rule: Odd odd-number rows press to the left, for even rows, press to the right. Taking my time, I nest the seams and pin each one. If there’s a problem, I might have to redo a seam or two until they are even—and then I sew that long seam. Don’t stretch your blocks/rows to make them fit—this is how you get wavey, uneven quilt tops and puckers in the quilting.

Sew Sincerely,


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