Monday, January 9, 2023

What is Color Blocking + our 5 top tips

This week, as part of our Sew Your Stash event, we're talking about color blocking.  So we first need to clarify what is meant by color blocking!

Color blockingMixing two to three (if not more) bold and often contradictory colors together in one ensemble to make for an exciting statement piece.

Project Run & Play

For those of us who sew, color blocking is a GREAT stash buster because it allows us to use up smaller cuts of fabric.  You know, those pieces that are left over from cutting out a bigger project that are just big enough that you hate to throw them away!

Top 5 Tips for Color Blocking:

1.  Plan ahead!  Draw out your plan ahead of time.  Did you know that every single pattern in the Project Run & Play shop has line drawings included?  These line drawings are perfect for printing out and sitting down with a handful of crayons to plan your project!

2.  Remember to add seam allowances!  If you've decided to color block the front of a shirt, and the pattern piece says cut on the fold, you have to remember to add a seam allowance on the center front of both pieces.  Anywhere you cut a pattern piece for extra color blocking, remember to add seam allowance.

Project Run & Play

3. Check and then check again before you cut!  Because we're so used to cutting things out with the fabric folded in half, this is an area to use caution.  We recommend when color blocking to cut everything out with the right side of the fabric up and then you just have to remember to cut mirror images, which will mean turning over the pattern piece.  Don't worry if it sounds complicated, just mark your pattern pieces ahead of time!

4.  Nest your seams.  This is a trick we garment sewers learned from quilters!  They're the experts at getting corner and angles to line up, and they have a neat little trick they call nesting the seam.  It works like this: instead of pressing your seams open, press them toward one side (the darker fabric if applicable.)  Then, when you bring two joints together, the seam allowances will nest right up next to each other, and on the right side, it will create a PERFECT junction.

Project Run & Play

5.  Press your color blocked seams well.  No seriously!  Everyone's eyes will be drawn to the color blocking, and you want those seams to look amazing!  We like to press our seams flat first with lots of steam, and then a second time with lots of steam.

Project Run & Play

There you have it!  Color blocking defined and our top 5 tips.  Are you ready for some more color blocking fun?  Come back tomorrow!  (Use the graphic above to save these tips on Pinterest.  Do you follow us there?)

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