English Paper Piecing with Sew Easy templates

So I know it is only June but I wholeheartedly believe it is never too early to start Christmas sewing!

When I saw the new Sew Easy Template Sets I knew they would be perfect for using in conjunction with the new Makower Merry Christmas collection!

The Sew Easy Template Sets come in a range of popular shapes (squares, hexagons, triangle, right-angle triangles, diamonds and pentagons) with each shape set containing 8 templates of varying sizes. The templates have been laser cut for precision, they contain marking points, they come already on a keyring (so you don’t lose any!) and an additional 1/4″ seam allowance is added to each shape.

Having a range of sizes within one set is really useful as it means you can easily adapt to use the shape most suited to the fabric you’re using! I wanted to fussy cut these reindeers from the Merry Christmas collection because they’re just so cute!

I could then place different squares on top until I found the shape that fit! These reindeers fit perfectly within the 2.5″ square.

Then, using my rotary cutter, I can use the template to cut around as it is made for strong, durable acrylic.

If you’re a machine patchworker then cut out a handful of these fussy-cut reindeers, attach the 1/4″ foot to your machine and you are good to go! I was on a roll but Misha always seems to want to get involved (and it scares the life out of me when I am holding a rotary cutter!) I am definitely taking this as another cat-approval though!

If, like me, you love a bit of handsewing and English Paper Piecing (EPP) then the sew easy templates are great for fussy cutting the fabric and for making your paper templates! So, if you wanted to EPP with the template set I would actually recommend using them slightly differently. A 1/4″ seam is perfect for machine patchwork but it is a bit fiddly for EPP. So I knew the reindeer fit within my 2.5″ square but I wanted a bigger seam allowance than the 1/4″ included on the template. Instead, I cut the fabric out using the 3″ square.

This just gives you a bit of extra wiggle room with your seam allowance when English Paper Piecing. Then, to make the paper template, I went back to my 2.5″ template (as that is the finished size for my reindeer) and placed it on top of a piece of white card.

Using my pencil, I could then draw a joining line inside the marking points so that I would know what size to cut the paper template.

Using my rotary cutter, I then used the edge of the template as a cutting guide to cut out a paper template measuring 2.5″ square.

By using those marking points inside the 2.5″ template I have disregarded the seam allowance and made a paper template that is precisely the size I want it to be for fussy cutting.

Then, I placed the 2.5″ acrylic template onto the wrong side of the reindeer square to make sure I had the placement correct.

Once I have checked the placement is right, I always let one edge of the fabric hang loose. Leaving this gap between the fabric and the sew easy acrylic template means it is easy to slip your paper template inbetween the 2 layers.

Using my nail, I then hold the paper template in place and remove the sew easy acrylic template. Then, I attach binding clips to hold the paper piece in the right place before folding the edges over and thread basting.

I definitely prefer using binding clips to pins for English Paper Piecing because it gives a stronger hold at various points which you definitely need when fussy cutting!

I love how versatile the sew easy templates are because they can be used for cutting, marking, fussy cutting, machine patchwork and English Paper Piecing!

I have made 4 EPP squares using the Sew Easy templates so far and I might make these blocks into a Christmas coaster! With a bit of Christmas green for the binding it will look adorable!

For stockists information or if you are a retailer and want to stock these items then please contact groves@stockistenquiries.co.uk