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Overdying My Printed Fabric

Paper Piecing Letters

I'm working on a baby quilt and I wanted to add some big block letters to the back -- you know, go a little bit above and beyond the usual.  After thinking about different ways to get the letters on the back, I decided to go with paper piecing.  If you've never paper pieced before, here's what you need to know:

  • It's easy with great results.  I think it's very beginner friendly.  You just sew right on the line.
  • But it can be physically demanding -- a constant rotation of sewing machine to cutting table to iron and back to sewing machine.  (I threw out my back doing this little dance, btw.)
  • There are a million free paper piecing tutorials online if you'd like to give it a try.  I thought this one was pretty good:

  • My first experiment with self-drafting paper piecing blocks was this quilt:


  • Soon after, I took a class in drafting paper pieced improv blocks:


  • After those experiences and my recent foray into the alphabet blocks, here are two paper piecing hints from me: (1) An "add a quarter" ruler makes paper piecing so quick and easy, (2) Shorten your stitch length to make removing the paper a breeze.

My little text project is still in process, but I thought I'd tell you about the basic process thus far:

I sketched out the basic idea of how I was going to put my blocks together.

Then, since I had several letters (3 "B's") that were the same, I decided to draft my blocks in Illustrator so that I could just print out the templates.  (Notice that the template is "backwards" -- this ensures the letter will be facing the correct way when finished.)

Then I began the process of putting each letter together and inserting them into the backing fabric.

I will be sure to share lots more pics when the quilt is done.  I made a million mistakes along the way, but I'm enjoying the process thus far!

Thanks for stopping by!