Eventually, if it hasn’t happened already, you will likely find yourself working with a quilt pattern that says “align centers and ends.” That can happen with units comprised of curved piecing, complex blocks made with standard or paper piecing, and when applying borders.
While aligning the ends when joining pieces seems straightforward (simply pin the pieces together on both ends), what about aligning the centers of the two pieces? Measuring is one approach but a much simpler method is folding. This old-school strategy can ensure that two quilt parts fit together nicely without distortion.
Ashley Hough from National Quilters Circle has put together an excellent video demonstrating how to align centers and ends by folding. She focuses on two specific areas – curved piecing and borders – although this strategy can be used in many other applications as well.
” Curved pieces are challenging to measure and difficult to align. With a folding trick for block alignment, she presents the perfect solution. Her suggestion for folding and creasing each section leads to a beautifully nested set of curved pieces ready for stitching. No measuring or tools are needed, and it works every time.”
The same technique can be used whenever you’re adding borders. Aligning the centers of the borders with the center of the quilt top will help you keep your borders from becoming distorted as they are applied and will result in a more accurately “squared” quilt top.
Watch as Ashley demonstrates both processes in the video below. Keep in mind that folding to mark blocks, units, and quilts can be helpful in many other situations as well.
Click here to watch the video at YouTube if it doesn’t play on your device.
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