Foundation Paper Piecing Produces Perfect Quilt Blocks
What is foundation paper piecing? The technique is also often referred to simply as flip flop. This is a technique traditionally used to stabilize quilt blocks. What does this mean? It means that this method has been used to strengthen the fabrics being used. Thus one can work with fabrics having more stretch, fabrics that would not normally be used in a quilt.
The technique involves a background or foundation to which the quilt blocks are stitched. The background fabric was traditionally muslin, but paper of some sort is generally used today. The paper can be tracing paper, freezer paper or some other paper that is heavy in weight, after all the paper must be sturdy enough to accommodate having fabric stitched to it.
The fabric is actually stitched to the paper template, which usually has numbers on the paper. The fabric is attached to each numbered template and then stitched. After all of the fabric has been successfully stitched to the template, then the paper is ripped away, producing perfect blocks.
This quilting technique is considered very good for blocks with unusual shapes, such as rectangles, triangles, hexagons and other unusually shaped blocks.
When this technique is used, perfect blocks are generated and in turn perfect quilts.
This is definitely not a technique for beginning quilters. Before using this technique a quilter must have a good grasp of basic quilting principles.
The resulting quilt has sharp edges, and such objects as animals or flowers have a blocky shape not the rounded shape of the animal or flower. Nevertheless, the resulting quilt has a beauty all of its own, even though the animal or flower many not have the traditional look of what it is supposed to represent.
For more information on this quilting technique, quiltingassistant.com is a good resource as would be quilt.com.
There are also some excellent books on the technique, which I found at amazon.com. Here is one of them:
• Easy Machine Paper Piecing by Carol Doak
An excellent companion to Carol Doak’s book is her DVD, Carol Doak Teaches You to Paper Piece. The DVD for paper piecing can be found at ctpub.com Although this is a more advanced technique for more experienced quilters, it is still an excellent technique to learn that will teach precision quilting.