A couple of weeks ago the lovely people at Lady Sew And Sew sent me one of their Vlieseline (formerly Vilene) creative packs to do some reviews on.  I decided that I would challenge myself over the next 2-3 months to make things that use each one of the items in it.

For my first attempt, I picked the 1″ Fusible Quilter’s Grid and as I only had a 20 cm wide piece of it, decided to use it to make a quilt for Jack.  Normally I don’t do teeny, tiny piecing as I value what remaining sanity I possess, but I suspected this stuff would make the process infinitely easier, and I wasn’t wrong!

I had begun the process of making Jack a bed over a year ago out of my Liberty scraps which consisted of scrap bags I’d picked up over the years, and for this project I chose a couple of large scraps in red and blue which I grabbed from Standfast & Barracks when they did their closing out sale of Liberty just over a year ago.  I added a few other scraps of red and blue to give a little variation and then began to cut a million and one 1″ squares (this would have been much faster if I’d had a 1″ square Sizzix die, but such is life!)  Once it was all chopped up, it was just a case of laying out all the squares in the grid and applying the iron to hold them all in place.

To stitch it together, you simply fold the piece right sides together along the grid lines, first in one direction, then in the other, and use the folded edge to measure your seam allowance from.  I elected to use around a 3/16″ seam allowance since the interfacing would be enclosing the seam allowances (and Jack has promised not to play tug of war with it with George) because I didn’t want it to shrink away to nothing, but here’s a comparison of the first half that I stitched up and the bit that was fused and waiting to go:

And here’s the finished piece.  I love how evenly these teeny squares came out, I’m sure I would never had managed that with free piecing, not matter how anal I was about seam allowances, because it’s difficult to line up such tiny sections without assistance.

The good thing is that since it’s a grid, you’re not restricted to 1″ Squares, you could do 1″ x 2″ rectangles for a narrow stripy effect, or 2″ squares for a 1 1/2″ finished square patchwork or whatever else you can think of that can be a square or rectangle that starts with pieces cut in whole inches.  I think using the 2″ squares for a 1 1/2″ finish would make for a great outer of a pouch or bag, since it will also be interfaced at the same time, giving it extra strength.

The only tiny downside was that I got a bit of eyelashing on the back when I tried to FMQ too quickly over all the seams, but I suspect that’s just a crowded seam allowance issue rather than a grid issue, just be careful and don’t try going at 90 miles an hour with it!

As an aside I also managed to do my first faced binding – I was struggling a little to wrap my head round how to do it on a bigger piece, so this was a perfect size to practice on and get the technique straight in my mind.

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