Many people feel overwhelmed when they first open a Judy Niemeyer pattern. Yes, there are a LOT of words and diagrams. But you know what — they’re really helpful! Judy provides step by step instructions from beginning to end – the trick is not getting lost in the process. I thought it would be helpful to share with you my process as I work my way through the Prairie Star.
On Monday, I cut out all my papers. By papers, I mean both the template layout sheets that will be used later for efficiently and economically cutting your fabric, and the foundation papers that will be used for the paper piecing of the design. I find it very helpful to check off each step as it is completed. A couple of tips for efficiency: Pin duplicate papers together, using various reference points, and cut the pieces out at the same time with a rotary cutter instead of scissors. Judy’s instructions tell you to put the various papers in different bags – in this case Bags 1-9. Here are my papers and bags. Ignore the stuff in the right hand corner – it’s an unrelated UFO (I know, Tip #1 should be to clear your workspace – oh, well).
The next step is to paste swatches of your fabrics into the appropriate chart for each motif. Trust me – this will help prevent mistakes – unless, of course, you paste the wrong swatch into the wrong place, which I’ve done (sigh). Anyway, here are the swatches and the chart for the Center Star.
Then I did the same thing for the Inner Spikes and the Curved Geese.
And then for the New York Beauty motif.
And then finally, for the Lone Star motif.
Ta da! Now, I’m ready to start cutting — mañana.