Imagine quilting on the beach, during your child’s soccer practice, or while having coffee with friends. For Flossie Teacakes blogger Florence Knapp, author of the namesake book, Flossie Teacakes Guide to English Paper Piecing, one of the joys of EPP is that you can do it just about anywhere. And while it’s not always easy or even possible to tote an entire project in your purse, carrying a handful of supplies and some precut pieces for a rosette or a small section of a larger quilt project means you can enjoy creative endeavors away from home whenever time allows.
In Flossie Teacakes Guide to English Paper Piecing, Florence shares the contents of her creative go-bag for those special and sometimes unpredictable moments when you find yourself out and about with time to spare. Fortunately, with Florence’s tips you’ll have something to do—EPP!
Here’s an excerpt from Flossie Teacakes Guide to English Paper Piecing on Florence’s must-take items for EPP on the go.
Go Forth and Quilt
One of the joys of English paper piecing is that it is so portable! Here are some things to consider packing before going on your way. I like to store my English paper piecing in sturdy, clear plastic stationery pouches. They have enough form to prevent small pieces from getting bent in my handbag, and the plastic protects everything from getting wet. They’re also incredibly light, and the transparency allows me to find what I want without emptying all the contents onto my lap.
What to Pack
Inside the pouch, I keep all the basics I might need. For me, these include needles, small curved or blunt-nosed scissors (to avoid them jabbing their way out of the pouch), a glue pen, a spool or two of thread, a thimble for any EPP related appliqué, and, as a realist, a seam ripper. And, of course, some pieces to sew together.
Empty plastic glue-pen refill packets make fantastic needle cases and offer an environmentally friendly recycling option. If you don’t use glue for basting, you can purchase needle cases instead. Alternatively, a professional costumier recently introduced me to a dome threaded needle case, which holds up to ten threaded needles without tangling threads. It’s quite ingenious and seems to increase workflow, as well as reducing the need to thread up needles on the go.
I feel anxious about taking a large piece of work away from the safety of my sewing room, so when I’m on the move, I prefer to break a project down into smaller sections and the component parts will only be assembled into something larger once home. It also ensures that it remains a portable pastime—rather than one where I’m trying to fit a large half-finished quilt into my handbag!
So whether you’re looking to make progress on a WIP or simply want to keep your hands busy, carrying an English paper piecing project in your bag is a great way to enjoy your creative side—and feel productive—even if you find yourself with only a few minutes to spare.