Two days ago I was looking in the book Material Obsession 2 and I reeeeally wanted to make a block from the Jazz Hands quilt. But...it had Y-Seams. A lot of Y-Seams. I decided to suck it up and try it out. There were a couple handdrawn diagrams for instruction and it took me a bit of time to really figure it out. But I did and then posted about my success on Twitter. Well, as many as three people were interested in a tutorial, so here it is. Ha!
Disclaimer! This is how I personally figured out how to make Y-Seams. I am self taught, I'm sure there are a thousand ways to do this. This is mine.
What is a Y-Seam? Sometimes in sewing, you have three pieces of fabric that need to be sewn together in the shape of a "Y". Like this:
1. Start by taking the bottom 2 pieces and place them right sides together.
Stitch from the bottom up to the dot in the photo. That dot is a little closer than 1/4" from the edge of the fabric. If you want you can backstitch a bit at the end (I didn't).
2. Press the seam open. See where you have a bit that you didn't sew.
3. Now the top portion of the "Y". We need to sew the top piece to the bottom piece.
Take the top piece of fabric and fold it down right side together with the left portion of the bottom fabric.
4. Stitch down the fabric along the red line above. With your needle in the down position, stop at the red dot on the diagram above. This is the seam line from step 1!
5. Now is where it gets a bit tricky. Leaving your needle in the down position, lift your presser foot. Turn the top fabric so the seam now lines up with the second half of the "Y" you need to sew.
Continue sewing down the rest of the fabric to complete the "Y".
6. Press the fabric down towards the bottom of the "Y".
And now you can go ahead and make something really cool like this!