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TUTORIAL - Y Seams


Ah those DREADED Y seams. I actually do not mind doing these seams - my only issue - you CANNOT sew them quickly. They take TIME.

Hopefully the following will help you make your seams as nice as mine are.


Carefully cut out the components for your Y seams. Can you see why it is called a Y seam??????

The difference between Y seams and a regular seam is that you do NOT sew all the way from one end to the other.  So we must mark a start point. Here I am using a regular ruler and a pencil to draw a small line that will mark the intersection of the two seams. Remember SCANT 1/4" - notice the 1/4" line on the ruler is JUST beyond the edge of the fabric. 

Here you can see the intersection marked. That intersection is where I am going to start sewing. 

Line up the two pieces. It is best to line up the two side pieces first - in this case, I am lining up the orange and the green which you just see peeking underneath the orange fabric

Then starting at that marked intersection (and DO NOT forget to anchor that end of seam by using the FIX button on your sewing machine if you have one OR you must start a couple of stitches ahead and reverse two stitches OR start and then reverse and then go forward again). The only problem with the last method is if you have to rip - you are now ripping THREE seams in that tiny spot. Not fun.

You can see in the photo above that my machine was temperamental and started ONE stitch after the intersection. 

I went back and added an extra stitch. This is a messy fix - but it works. 

Now we are going to add in the third piece (see how messy that extra stitch was - you can see it on the green). You can see the light piece in behind the green. I want to exactly line those points where the arrow is. 

Starting just at the end of the previous stitching, I stitch from the center to the outside.

See where all three pieces are just touching but not really

This is the seam from the light fabric side. You notice that I did NOT mark the intersection on the light fabric which would have allowed me to match up that intersection and the intersection on the orange.  I should have and you will see why in a minute. 

The stitching from the green side

The light side (the seam allowances are NOT even because I did NOT mark that intersection and the light fabric is a bit off kilter)

The stitching from the orange side and here you can really see how much extra the light fabric is sticking out. 

Here is the piece from the right side. Because I added that extra stitch - I got a bit of thread showing through at the middle intersection which I just trimmed off with my scissors. And you can see on the left (green) side that there is a wobble - this is because I did NOT match up that right angle on the light fabric properly by NOT marking the intersection BUT it still works. 

The wrong side - note that you press the first seam open and the other one lies flat. I press ONCE all three seams are done. 


Now I sew the components together - YIKES - ANOTHER Y seam

First get rid of the dog ears and notice how nicely the points line up in the corners - no overhang

Mark the intersection

And then sew - I NEVER pin any of these seams. I use the STILETTO - It is a great tool and is a super substitute for pinning. It means you pin on the go. Pins can shift and are BAD news. You should try to get used to using the stiletto - yes it feels weird at first, but I swear that is how I achieve my accuracy. 



Here is the new piece - notice the first seam pressed open and the other one if flat

Add the bottom triangle - that was easy - but HEY - this looks wonky. Yes - even my stuff gets wonky

Nothing that a little trimming won't cure

And VOILA - there is the finished block with TWELVE Y seams. 




2 comments:

  1. Great tutorial. Your block is sweet! Thanks for sharing!

    Lorna:)
    http://sewfreshquilts.blogspot.com

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  2. Everything is easy...once you know how! Your tutorial was great! I look forward to seeing more & learning more. Thank you for sharing.

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