Tutorial: A Favorite Time Saver – Chain Piecing

I love this technique, because it saves so much time, especially when you are sewing 90 squares for a king size quilt. After sewing the first few squares it almost becomes a zen like experience. And before you know it, you are done.

It definitely helps to start with a full bobbin, full spool of thread and a new sewing needle. I use a universal 80/12 or a 90/14. To begin the first piece, I sew a scant 1/4″ straight stitch across a small piece of scrap fabric. When I get to the end, I line up the ends with my first square. I sew across the two fabrics, and back stitch to lock the threads of my first block.

I continue sewing a scant 1/4″ seam down my block.

When I am almost at the end, I line up my next block, ends matching. Put the two blocks back under the presser foot gently, so the alignment doesn’t move.

When I get to the end of the first piece, I back stitch for a few stitches to lock the threads, and then go forward sewing onto the next block. Then I back stitch for a few stitches on the second block to lock those threads in place. 

Then continue sewing on the second block. I continue that way until I am finished with all the blocks, which in this case is 90 blocks, because this is a king size quilt. When I am finished, I carefully snip the blocks apart, before ironing. 

If you guessed that ironing the blocks is the next tutorial, you are correct!! Or as my British friends would say, “Brilliant.” 

I posted a short video on the Hudson Valley Quilt facebook page on chain piecing. For some reason it wouldn’t upload to the blog. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments box. Happy Chain Piecing.