Foundation Piecing

Thanks to everyone who commented or sent me input on the best tear away stabilizer. I enjoyed reading all about it and still want to try the EQ paper.

While teaching this weekend at the Sewing and Quilting Expo in Platteville, WI, a student in one of my classes said that she recently foundation pieced a pineapple log cabin quilt using a wash away foundation and she was pleased with the results. I asked her to send me the name of the one she liked and I will pass it along to you. Do you have any thoughts on wash aways?

Since we’re on the subject of foundation/paper piecing, I thought I’d share a new gadget I was introduced to in a workshop I took in Paducah with RaNae Merrill. RaNae foundation pieces amazing Spiral Mandala quilts. One of the problems brought on by the flood in Paducah this year was that the church where the classes ended up being held didn’t have the right electric set up for multiple irons. Therefore, when RaNae introduced us to pressing with wall paper rollers, it was a hit.

She said the little, wooden “finger irons” had a tendency to stretch the fabric, but the roller didn’t. I’ve tried the finger iron and I didn’t find it worked that well.


But I really like the roller! Using it at home is sure to save me a bit of money on my electric bill – irons use a lot of juice! I purchased the one in the picture in class. They’re high quality and available on her site:

The picture shows the correct way to hold it to reduce stress on the neck of the roller and the arm of the quilter too :-).


Do you have any favorite foundation piecing tips or tools?

PS Jeanie sent me a fascinating site about a design proposal for the  XXII Winter Olympic Games. Click here for some great quilt designs:

8 Opinions

  • Sarah B. said:

    i have used the wooden iron, lots of time I use my fingernail, when they are in good shape :>) Thanks for the link to the proposed Olympic logos. Very pretty. I hope they choose those designs!

  • Susan Ott said:

    I used Collins Washaway Foundation paper many years ago for a lone star variation quilt. I kept the papers in until the top was together and when I put it in water I got a HUGE amount of lint all over the quilt. Took forever to get it off. I’m surprised I could find the leftover package since I will never use it again.

  • Johanna Frtiz said:

    If I am not using the June Tailor wash away paper, I pre-score my paper pieceing lines in my lap while I watch TV. It only takes about an hour to do a quilt’s worth. By pre-folding all the lines (and then smoothing them out) it
    makes it easier to see to position the pieces from the back side. I will check out the roller though.

  • Nancy Michalek said:

    I love to foundation paper piece & I wouldn’t consider doing it without wash away paper. I’ve tried a few varieties & their all about the same. You can put it in your printer to make multiple copies. The weight of the paper is just right so it doesn’t fall apart even on big projects. Speaking of big projects, you also want the wash away tape. It’s about l/4″ & can be used on tears or putting foundation pages together. I may have to look into that foller. I have a small, narrow June Taylor combo cutting mat/ironing surface(all on the same side) & one of those cute mini irons.

  • Cheryl said:

    You have such a wonderful and informative blog that I can go back and refer to again and again. I love the idea of the roller vs. a presser for “finger pressing” seams. Must try.

  • Louise said:

    I have that roller for paper piecing and love it. I will have to try to use it as shown because I don;t. I have been told that if you go to a hardware/paint store you can buy just about the same thing for wallpaper for a fraction of the cost. I enjoy your blog and read it whenever I get a little free time. (thats why this reply is late!)

  • Patty Rheinscheld said:

    I found all the information here to be great. I can hardly wait to get started.


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