Making a double wedding ring quilt has been a dream of mine for over 34 years.
My love for the double wedding ring quilt started when a friend of mine pulled out a quilt she had been working on and asked if I wanted to help. She had hand pieced a DWR quilt and was now in the process of quilting it. I didn’t have much knowledge about quilting at the time but sat with her and tried to imitate her stitching.
Once I started quilting, the idea of cutting all those pieces and then trying to sew all those curves seemed overwhelming! I even looked into purchasing a pre-cut DWR kit but the price always detoured me and I never found a kit with fabrics I really liked.
I purchased the AccuQuilt Double Wedding Ring die last February but COVID-19 kept me busy with masks and today was the first time I pulled it out and decided to cut some pieces.
As with all my AccuQuilt dies, I used a permanent marker to trace the edge of all the shapes. This makes it easier for me to see where my fabric needs to be placed for proper cutting. This particular die has two die pieces as shown above.
The inside part of the cover gives directions for making a double wedding ring wall hanging and some basic directions for piecing the blocks together. You can also find youtube videos by instructors of AccuQuilt as well as individuals to help aid in the construction of the block.
The truth about making a double wedding ring block . . .
. . . is that it is challenging! The die set makes cutting all the shapes a much easier task. Especially with the little tabs that each piece cuts out with for matching/aligning them together.
The die also gives a choice of making a pieced arc or a one-piece arc. In my test block I used both. After piecing my first arc, I sewed the arc to the melon shape. After attaching the longer arc which is the way the packaging suggested, I found it easier to make the small arc first (without the square ends (piece B) attached and sewing it to the melon first. Then I could line up the ends better for the longer piece (piece B attached) to be sewn to the melon shape. The melon shape is shown as piece C.
The tabs are especially helpful on center placement of the curves. The tab gives you a starting point for pinning.
Speed is not your friend when sewing a double wedding ring block.
I can not stress enough the need to take your time when making this block. The end pieces need to be marked with dots to show where to stop or start your sewing. The mark is to show where the 1/4 inch seam will be and they are placed at the points where other sewn pieces come together. (The instructions show and explain placement.). If you’ve sewn “Y-seams” or hexies together it is the same principle.
When sewing an arc to a melon, I also found that having the melon on top and the arc underneath made sewing and manipulating the fabric in curves easier. One thing to watch out for is if you need to pull on a pieced arc, don’t pull too hard or your seams may start to pull apart. Also, watch for bunching or your fabric in the curves.
In the picture above, the white fabric is bunching as I’m sewing the curve and as it moves under the pressure foot. To keep from sewing a pleat I didn’t want in my fabric, I would make sure the needle was down in my fabric and I would lift the pressure foot up. I would then manipulate the fabric to smooth and straighten before putting the pressure foot down and continuing my sewing path. Having a stiletto or a Purple Thang is very handy for tight spaces where you need to hold the fabric in place.
Pressing your seams as you go along is important as well. On my pieced arc, I pressed my seams open. On the curved areas I pressed the seams towards the white fabric. This pressing placement seemed to help keep things flatter. I did find pressing tricky in the areas where several seams come together. I believe as I make more of these blocks, I will find a better way to pin for sewing and pressing.
My first block does have a little rippling in the center area. I believe my blocks will get better the more I sew and discover ways that make the process easier. I would like to make a 30’s reproduction double wedding ring quilt in the future.
My final thoughts about sewing a double wedding ring block are this . . .
I consider this block an intermediate to advanced quilter block. Having the AccuQuilt die for cutting my fabric is a BIG plus! I can not imagine trying to cut with a rotary cutter or by hand. It’s best to take your time when sewing the different aspects of the block and to press your seams as you go.
If you’ve found a handy tip, please share in the comments. I know everyone would like to know an easier way. Happy Sewing!
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