Thursday, December 8, 2011

Wednesday's clamshell progress

My clamshell sashing progress is going slowly. This past week, I either hurt my shoulder by doing too much handwork or the pain was weather related. I've noticed I tend to tense and scrunch up my left shoulder and also hunch over my work. My left shoulder muscles were very painful this last week so I took some necessary time off from hand piecing which just about drove me crazy!

Yesterday, being my sewing day, I spent a few hours hand piecing the first sashing strips to the clamshell diamond blocks as the photo shows. I tried to be really careful about my shoulder and, so far, my shoulder is relatively pain free. The lower left block is just laid over the sashing to show you how it will look when finished.

My biggest challenge with the sashing strips is how to applique the narrow stem (?) with its sharp point at the base of the bottom clamshell of each block. This is the first time I've ever had to do this and would love to receive any advice you readers can give! The top block was my first attempt and its point seems a little blunt. The next block was the second attempt and its stem and point are better but seems bulky even with careful trimming. Any advice?


  1. So sorry to know you're having shoulder pain! You're a real trooper to continue to work on this quilt... and it's absolutely stunning. That sashing, as difficult as it may be to sew, it going to perfectly set off the colors. I too have had issues with getting sharp points. I blogged about my attempts here, when I was making Joseph's Coat blocks that require every "petal" to have sharp points. It isn't easy to get those points to meet.

  2. The clamshells look quite delicious in their many colours!! I can't advise about getting sharp points as I've not done any clamshell work and my applique techniques are not very sophisticated LOL!!! Still trying to find a method that suits me!!! But re: your painful shoulder, take regular breaks and do some stretches in between or if you have a kind soul at home, get them to give you a good rub to loosen up tense muscles before doing another stint of sewing! Your quilt will be a beautiful piece of work once it's done though Mayleen!!!!

  3. sorry to hear about your shoulder, my hubby is having the same thing.
    The shells look great, try not to be too hard on yourself. Points are always hard, I struggle with them too.