Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Paper Piecing Problem

Now that I am past 100 houses, a problem is developing with the paper piecing. A couple days ago, I noticed that my iron was beginning to drag and my ironing board cover was picking up some black marks. I cleaned the iron (OK, I lied. DH cleaned my iron) and put a piece of muslin on the ironing board. The black marks continued to show up and my iron is continuing to pick up some residue.
Here is a picture of one afternoon's accumulation of black marks. When DH and I discussed the issue, he remembered that when he took the pattern to be copied at Office Depot (he takes care of these kinds of errands for me. I know. I am spoiled), they changed copy machines during the process because one machine was having trouble with the thin paper. I now know that I have pattern sheets that came from two different copiers. One machine, apparently had a different kind of ink, or perhaps just put more ink on each copy.

So here is the problem. I am getting quite a mess when ironing these blocks. Have any other paper piecers out there ever had this problem? Is there a solution? I would love to hear about your experience with copied patterns.

I am trying to be very careful so that I don't smear any of the ink on my blocks. I have a lot of blocks to go in this project. I work slowly as it is. I don't need another problem slowing me down even more.


  1. That sure sucks! I need to change my iron and ironing board cover - who knew that ironing was such a yucky dirty business!!? Oh yah - I did - that's why I never iron my clothes!!!

  2. I've seen some people use baking/greasproof paper to iron on. I think I've done the same to out cover....Why my Mother got a white one I'll never know... =D

  3. Oh no!I hope you can get it fixed so the ink doesn't get on your fabric. I don't know to much about cleaning irons (mine is a cheapy one my mom gave me that matched her toaster and coffee pot! Hoping to upgrade someday lol) If vinegar didn't work, I'd use some CLR. That stuff cleans like nobody's business! Since you can't exactly submerge an iron I'd use a shallow pan or plastic bin and set the iron on a wash rag that is soaked in it, so no submerging of iron and cleaner only on the plate. Hope this helps :)

  4. Sorry forgot to add last part! After you have a clean iron, try putting a piece of copy paper over the ink when you iron next so the ink gets on the paper and not your iron. :) Happy Quilting.

  5. I don't iron on the back side - printed side - of the paper - only the fabric side with a towel on my ironing board should ink transfer. But I am rather 'unorthodoxed' in paper piecing - after each section is made - pressed fabric side - trimmed to size - remove all paper and then I sew the sections together - no paper - then I can use a damp pressing clothe to really get those seams flat.

  6. I heard that copy machines that use "toner" for ink will do that...I make my paper pieced patterns on an ink jet printer... maybe check office supply stores to find out what they are using for printing product...

    on your iron, I keep used fabric softner sheets near my ironing surface and when plate gets gunked up with stuff I iron on the sheet and often the residues come off... hope these tips help!

  7. I use "Fun-dations" and my inkjet printer - and have never had a problem with ink transfer - but then again - I do it totally BACKWARDS from most people. Check the "Left-Handed Quilting" psge/tab on my blog for my post on "LHQ - Foundation Paper Piecing" - might help - ;))

    P.S. Why did you turn off the word verification? It was there for a reason - ;))