By Nancy Norem Powell and Kathy Cook, Treasurer and Past President
This year’s charity quilt theme of tiny piecing was a challenge that our guild met with enthusiasm! BNMQG is full of members with big hearts and they were the inspiration for our quilt, designed and assembled by our treasurer, Nancy Powell. In July we were privileged to have a guild workshop led by Lynn Carson Harris on tiny piecing. We followed up with more instruction on paper piecing with workshops and had sewing days to make hearts – many, many hearts!
The three large hearts are composed of 1″ paper-pieced hearts made by members, and are arranged on a purple background. More 1″ hearts scatter and turn as if they are floating. This challenge not only gave our members the opportunity to learn to paper piece, but to work with very tiny pieces. We learned these lessons on our tiny piecing journey. 1. Shorten the stitch length to keep little pieces together and to make removing the paper easier. We liked 1.5 for our stitch length. 2. Cut the fabric larger than you think you might need when adding a new piece. 3. Use an “add-a-quarter” ruler to be more precise. 4. Sew past the lines to the end of the paper pattern, not just the finished block line. This ensures that the pieces will be sewn into the seam allowance. 5. Press after each seam so it will lie flat and not be distorted or the wrong finished size. 6. Tiny piecing that is concentrated in areas is a challenge to quilt and makes the quilt heavy too!
Thank you to Betty Woodruff who did the quilting and binding!Members who completed 24 or more hearts were offered a free workshop for fun zippered bags. This was a great incentive for guild members who had never paper pieced to give it a try. The challenge took many of us out of our comfort zones and taught us new quilting skills. And we had so much fun along the way!As the design evolved we chose our charity. Many of our members, friends and families have been affected by Alzheimer’s. Purple is the color of the Alzheimer’s Association and they were chosen to receive the quilt. “Memories of the Heart” illustrates the growing number of people affected by this disease as well as the way our hearts continue to grow as we support them.