Friday, September 17, 2010

Curve Master Foot...SUCCESS!

I am one of those quilters who usually says, "I'm NEVER doing..." and insert whatever tough technique beginner's usually find daunting. I never wanted to do applique, but I have been purchasing plenty of applique kits and patterns (case in point, the Which Witch? pattern recently purchased on the Shop Hop) and I have even been known to sew a little applique (cupcakes). I never wanted to work with templates, but I signed up for a Storm at Sea class without realizing that there would definitely be templates involved. After finishing the quilt, I realized that templates aren't so scary!

I am starting to feel like I could sew curves! I have seen a few blogs mention this Curve Master foot and thought that it would be a very handy tool to have in case/for when (lol) I ever got an AccuQuilt GO! cutter and could easily cut fabric for a drunkard's path or an apple core quilt. I would then need to have a handy tool to be able to sew the blocks together, right?

So when I saw the Curve Master foot in motion during the Shop Hop, I really was in awe over how easy it looked to sew seams. I was fairly sure that I even *I* could do that!

I finally got a chance to work with the Curve Master foot yesterday and this morning. I was having some issues at first, but I think that I have the hang of it. It is definitely something that you have to practice at and sew slowly. For a speed demon like me, that is an adjustment! As I show my pictures and tell you how it works, I will also share the quirks of the foot that I had to overcome.

Here is the little foot. You can see that it is quite wide. Can you see the part on the right side that runs from the opening to the far right corner? The only part on the right side that touches the machine is right there! And the foot is already designed to give you a scant 1/4" seam when you sew. (It also comes in 5/8", but I got the 1/4".)

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I decided to find a Drunkard's Path template and just use that to practice with. I also pulled out 2 Fat Quarters (1/2 yard used!! Woo hoo!!) to practice with. I figured that if nothing else, these 2 needed to be cut down into smaller pieces anyway - no way will I find something to use them in! lol

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Once you have your pieces cut, you need to line up the beginning of the seam so that it is even and you can take 2-3 stitches.

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Put the points that match under the foot with the right edge butted up against 1/4" edge of the foot.

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Take a couple of stitches. This is where I had a few issues. Since the foot does not reach the machine in all places, you have to 'help' the fabric pass under the foot and move past the needle. A gentle pull of the leader fabric will help with the first couple of stitches and prevent the fabric from being eaten by the machine. I have been taking 3 stitches, but 4 would be my limit because you should be working into the curve by this part.

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I should mention here that I was also having some issues with the stitches bunching up even with the leader and when I read the FAQs on the website, I found out that you might need to adjust the pressure on your presser foot. I had to reduce my pressure to around 2 and once I did that, it was almost a breeze to sew with!

Once you are ready to start working on the curve, lift the top fabric away from the bottom fabric. You will be feeding both fabrics into the machine separately. (Can you tell what I mean about needing to practice?) I also had to turn the speed down on my machine because there is no way that I could keep up with the dual feeding of the fabrics in opposite directions as fast as my machine will sew on 'Speed Racer!' So, hold the top fabric up and away from the bottom fabric and let the machine pull the fabric through your fingers. You need to be careful not to pinch it too hard or you will stretch the bias and your ends won't meet.

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You also have to make sure that you are feeding both fabrics in at the same rate.

When you get to the last 1/2" of the seam, you place the 2 edges next to each other and hold them together while you feed them through the machine.

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And that is it! No pinning and no snipping of the seams!

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And here is how the blocks look after a good finger pressing. The seams are all in great places to meet!


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Maxie still thinks that his little toy is better. Hrmph!

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9 comments:

elizabeth said...

LOOKS LIKE A GREAT LITTLE TOOL FOR SEWING CURVES. THANKS FOR THE INFO

Jennifer said...

Looks like a good foot to have and your four blocks look good together - they'd make a great mini quilt for our quilt show auction :) (hint hint!)

Michelle said...

Oh, I will definitely pass this information on to my quilting girls. A few of us have wondered about this foot in the past. Might be a nice gift to have Santa bring some of us!
Thanks you so much for the demonstration and explanation. I love your block! Have fun sewing this weekend!

Quilting starts back up tomorrow. I have missed my girls!!!
Michelle

Vicky said...

Mine came in last week, but I haven't tried it yet. I was waiting for you to do the guinnea pig test! :) Hi Max!

PunkiePie said...

Very cool!! Thank you for the tutorial. I'll have to look into getting that foot for myself.

Ted and Donna said...

You constantly amaze me!! I know that's not saying much since I get my slacks hemmed at the dry cleaner but I mean it in the most sincere way. Love,

RETRO-fabulous said...

I am loving the curve master, too. I should get a few pieces out today to practice!!

Infinity Quilter/Knitter said...

Great job on the blocks and tutorial! I've seen the Curvemaster foot but haven't seen how it's used before.

Pat said...

I bought the Curve Master foot last week at a big quilt show and had a lot of trouble with it so far. I will try again today and hope I can get the hang of it. I never realized that the tension might have to be adjusted on the machine. That was never mentioned in the demo I saw (which was done by the gal who invented the foot). I sure hope I can get the hang of it since I do have a GO and the drunkard's path die, too. I hate to have to go back to using lots of pins in order to get good results!