I love the look of curvy seams in quilts and quite enjoy sewing curved seams, but I'm not keen on pinning. Today I'm going to share with you the way I tackle curved seams. I have used this technique in quite a few of my quilts which use freehand curved cutting such as Sea Views and Sherbet Dreams, but also in my quilts with precise templates such as Grand Designs (although I only describe the method using pins in the pattern.) It can take a little bit of practice to get this down pat (especially on such a tight curve needing a high degree of accuracy), but it's worth giving it a go because it could save you a lot of time.
- ensure you are sewing with an accurate 1/4" seam. In this video I used foot with a 1/4" guide (I'm using my old machine because my new one is in being serviced.)
- if your sewing machine has a needle down setting, use it, otherwise just lower the needle into the fabric if you need to stop and adjust the fabric
- reduce your stitch length to smaller than usual. This will give you a nice smooth curve (I used about a 2 on my sewing machine)
- have tweezers handy for holding the fabric together at the end of the curve
- go slowly
- don't pull the fabric, just ease and guide it through the machine
- if possible use fabric of similar weight and weave (especially when piecing such a tight curve and needing a high degree of accuracy). If you are using all kona cottons or prints from the same range you should be okay. However if you're mixing and matching prints from different ranges you may need to test different combinations. Some may stetch more than others.
- Give it a try, and if it doesn't work easily, just unpick it and you may need to use pins for some fabric combinations.
- make sure you cut your fabric so the grain is running the same direction on your inner and outer curve (otherwise it may warp when you sew them together)
- Be prepared to unpick. I still need to from time to time.
And here's one I prepared earlier (note that the fabrics are swapped around.)
Have fun, and let me know if you have any questions!
Also, Alyssa's running a giveaway sponsored by Sew Fresh Fabrics that you'll want to check out!