I discovered Paper Piecing!

OMG!! Why didn’t anyone tell me about Paper Piecing sooner!??  I love this stuff!

I bought some quilting books at an estate sale this weekend and as I flipped through them I started reading the paper (or foundation) piecing section.  After a quick review of it, it seemed do-able.  I then do what I always do when something intrigues me…. get on my netbook and do some research.  First, I started on YouTube because I am a visual learner.  Also, because I have posted dozens of sewing & quilting related videos on my YouTube channel and I was sure someone had posted one on paper piecing.
I was right… there were several paper piecing videos…. but none actually showed me how to paper piece! ugh!  They were either boring, confusing, or had bad camera shots of what was going on.  I was very disappointed.  I then turned to the text version of paper piecing tutorials.  I found several but I still could not understand their instructions.  I did find this link on the Quilter’s Cache website with a step-by-step tutorial but again, because it is not an interactive tutorial the process just didn’t click for me.   I decided to print the Practice Base Block she has on her site and try to figure it out on my own.

Ha! I started arranging the fabrics in all different orientations and stitching on the lines until it turned out correctly!  I messed up 5 blocks before I finally got it right! I’m glad I figured it out all on my own because now I can work on a tutorial to help others (who like me) couldn’t find a tutorial on the web to teach them.  Would you be interested in a video tutorial by me showing you the basics of paper piecing?

Hopefully, by sharing my story with you, I will inspire you to give it a go!  It is so much fun and once you do one you will see how easy it is!  I still don’t know why more people don’t do paper piecing…. I love it!  I made some blocks today using up some scraps for practice and they turned out perfectly! Have a look…..

If you have trouble measuring your blocks and often have to fudge and pull on corners to get things to match up this technique may be for you!  It’s literally piecing by numbers.  So simple, and the results are amazing!  Super crisp corners…perfect 1/4″ seam allowance all around your block….etc.

As I researched online, I found out that there are literally dozens of ways to get your paper piecing pattern setup.  Some people use parchment paper, newsprint, tissue paper, tracing paper, or even fabric as their foundation.  I used regular ol’ computer paper so I could print out the block pattern and didn’t have to deal with tracing lines.  I minimized my stitch length to 2.0 and it was super easy to remove the paper.  What do you use as your paper piecing foundation?

Now… I’m off to design my own paper piecing blocks on my EQ7 software program!

Happy quilting!

14 replies on “I discovered Paper Piecing!

  • wassonkari

    I’m interested in learning everything I can!! By the way, I was in your beginner class last Friday eve. (7/30) was this the estate sale I mentioned? I still never made it there.

  • Crafty Gemini

    You got it, ladies!! I’m working on it!
    @Kari: Yes, it was the estate sale you told me about… a friend of mine and I went on Saturday afternoon. Wow! There were like 3 bookshelves of just quilting books, fabric, and a bunch of notions. Thanks again for the heads up!

  • ksolo59

    Yes please do tut on paper piecing. My previous attempts at understanding this have been futile seems like it should be easier than my interpretation of the instructions I’ve seen so far.

  • Pam

    I, too, love the precision that paper piecing produces. I have had good luck with printing on paper that I buy at the dollar store, it’s labelled as regular printer paper but is lightweight in comparison to the standard 20# paper from the office supply store. And it’s thrifty!

  • Anonymous

    Your tutorial on paperpiecing is the best. Your demos are so easy to follow. I tried learning from a book and just got confused. After watching your vidoe I got it a no time. Thanks so much

  • MnMsZ

    Thank you so much for your tutorial on paper piecing. I’ve been quilting for a few years and just never had to nerve to try paper piecing. I am a visual and kenesthetic learner. I had a friend show me (quickly) but I didn’t do it along with her (I should have!). I love your tutorial and I have been doing it right along with you. SUCCESS! Thank you so much, again.

  • Cecilia Thex

    I searched on line for the news pei t sheets you mentioned in the Ten Twisted Block Table Runner. I could not find it. Can you give me a link?

  • Darla Weaver


    I just got EQ7 and I see YOU HAVE IT too!!!!!!!!! The reviewers were right when they said there was a learning curve. I feel like I was thrown in water while not being able to swim. But keep on trucking as we used to say in the 70’s….

    Just discovered your site while trying to learn paper piecing.

    You are an amazing person. Thank you for all your sharing.



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