Quick Quilting Tip - Finger Pressing

Happy Monday to you! I hope you had a great weekend :) Today, I'm sharing a super simple quick trick as part of Amy Smart's Quick Quilting Tips & Tricks blog hop to celebrate the release of her new book Fabulously Fast Quilts ! It's a simple trick that I use every day in my sewing room: finger pressing!

As a little girl, one of the girlie things I got into early on was nail polish. I actually got into some serious hot water one afternoon when I spilled half a bottle of glitter nail polish all over my mother's formal living room coffee table. My older sister was supposed to be watching me, but she didn't see me make a bee-line for her glitter nail polish, not until it was too late. My obsession with nail polish continues to this day - while I may be lax about getting my hair cut, I like to take care of my fingernails. Always have. I get manicures regularly, it's my "me time" - and I've found that in sewing, it's super handy to have my nails well taken care of, because I can put them to use finger pressing.

Do you finger press your seams? I'm a frequent finger presser. In paper piecing, there's a good bit of pressing involved - really, you ought to press every single seam you make with a nice, hot, dry iron. I do a lot of paper piecing, and I often cheat with my seams, finger pressing them rather than pressing them with the iron, if I'm waiting for the iron to heat up, or if I'm just being lazy, which happens frequently in my sewing room.

Finger pressing also works great for speeding up regular pressing. I often press assembly line style, laying out a bunch of pieces to be ironed all at once. This process is made way easier by finger pressing the seams first, so that I don't have to spend any time setting up the seam to be pressed. It works well for both side pressing and open seam pressing, so you can do whatever floats your boat.

If you aren't one for having longer fingernails, you can still take advantage of finger pressing using a notion called a Finger Presser. It's a little wooden tool that you can use in lieu of a finger nail to finger press your seams. In one of my recent paper piecing classes, I met a student who bites her finger nails and swears by her finger presser because her finger nails are never long enough to put to work in this way.

Also today, you can listen to me chatting with the wonderful Pat Sloan on her weekly American Patchwork & Quilting podcast - it's always such fun to chat with Pat, and this time we chatted a bit about free-motion quilting, so check out the podcast at 4 o'clock Eastern time today right here/1 o'clock Pacific time. You can also check it out after the fact, as well as other past podcasts right here. Pat's show is great to listen to while you're sewing, so make sure to check it out!