First, a work in progress:
This one really will be given to a baby, I swear. I'm not going to keep it, like the dots.
Second, I thought I would show you how to do something called chain piecing. I'm sure most of you know how to do this already. In fact you could quite possibly be doing it without knowing that it's called chain piecing. It's a handy little trick that makes piecing a quilt top go faster and more efficiently. I love tricks like this. I like to be efficient. A lot.
This is a good trick to use when you're piecing two or more sets of something, the simplest example being multiple rows of a quilt.
For this quilt I'm piecing together each column, starting on the left and piecing from the bottom to the top.
The whole idea of chain piecing is to allow yourself to keep sewing without cutting the thread after each seam. To do this you piece together two or more rows at a time. I'm starting with my first two columns. The stacks on the left are in the order that I want to piece them. We'll call them stack A (on top) and stack B (on the bottom). To the right are the first two pieces from each stack that I'll be sewing together.
First, sew together the two pieces from stack A. When you're done DON'T CUT THE THREAD! Just leave it there, sitting pretty.
Then take the first two pieces from stack B (I know these are different than in the first photo, that's my mistake. Nobody's perfect, right?) and sew them together. Again, don't cut the thread.
Now I've got the first two columns connected but I'm ready for another piece from stack A. So, I just snip the little bit of thread between the two, leaving the second pair still on the machine.
And voila, I'm sewing on a third piece from stack A.
That's done, snip B off the back, leaving A on the machine.
Ready to sew another block onto B.
You're just leap-frogging between A and B, snipping off the end of the chain and bringing it to the front. In theory you could do this with all of your rows at once, it just might get a little confusing trying to keep straight all of those piles and what row goes with what. I will do it with three stacks though, especially on a quilt like this with an odd number of columns. I don't want that last column to be left all by his lonesome with no one to be chained to.