Want to give foundation paper piecing a try? But you’re not sure what you’ll need to get started? Then this one is for you. Today I’m sharing my favorite tools for paper piecing, some budget options and share my all time favorite tool: birthday cards.

 

Quite a few items on this list would be considered standard quilting tools. So I’ll concentrate on the ones I specifically use for paper piecing. Are you new to paper piecing? Check out my video tutorial on how to do foundation paper piecing (it comes with a cute heart paper piecing block).

Paper templates

The first thing I do before I start cutting my fabrics is cutting paper templates. I know sometimes when foundation paper piecing is thaught you learn to cut a square of fabric that is large enough for the piece you need to sew. No templates needed, easy to cut, quick for sure, but it also means you’re using a lot more fabric than necessary.

So I cut paper templates. It’s a bit more work, but it allows me to fuzzy cut when I want to and to be very efficient with my fabric.

Just print an extra copy of the pattern to cut in pieces. When you’re working with directional fabrics you can even mark your paper templates with lines. Those lines let you know the direction they need to be cut from your fabrics.

Store the paper templates in a zip bag or an envelope so you can reuse them when you want to make a second block or want to remake your projects in the future.

Let’s talk paper

I love to use tea bag paper for paper piecing. It’s thin, it’s strong, it’s see through. I LOVE it. You can even tape it to a piece of printing paper to print a pattern directly on the teabag paper. But are you on a budget? Then there is no need for special paper at all. You can just as well start out with normal printing paper to give paper piecing a try.

Learn more about paper piecing paper in <this video> where I compare five different types of paper.

A second life for postcards

When you’ve cut your paper templates and your fabrics, and you’ve transferred your pattern on to paper piecing paper you’re ready to go. And that’s where my all time favorite tool comes in to play: a postcard or a business card.

“Save your happy birthday cards for paper piecing.”

We all have a few of those lying around right? I use them to fold my paper before cutting my fabric on a 1/4inch seam allowance.

I use a card here because you can lay it on the fold line before you fold the paper. When you fold the paper, you can’t see the fold line anymore, so using a card will help you to place the fold more precise.

Rulers that rule

When you’ve folded back the paper it’s time to cut away excess fabric so there’s a quarter inch seam allowance left. One way to do that is by using an add-a-quarter ruler. It can be placed very easily against the bump that you’ve created by folding the paper over a card. This little yellow ruler is the only tool I really wouldn’t want to miss for paper piecing. I guess that is mostly because I’m doing paper piecing so often. You can definitely use your normal ruler to cut that 1/4″ seam allowance. So it’s not an absolute ‘must have’, but hey neither are wonder clips and magnetic pincushions right? ;)

 

What are your favorite quilting tools? Did you miss anything in my list of favorite things? Would love to read about it in the comments below.

Love,
Irene

 

Whooohooo! Finally the pattern for Polly the Chicken is finished. Let the chicken crochet party begin! (Scroll down for the discount code)

First off, I need to say THANK YOU to all my amazing pattern testers.

Angelique
Esther
Mirjam
Caroline

This was the first crochet pattern I designed with my new mom brain. No need to say that a thorough inspection of the test crocheters was very much needed. So the pattern is tested through and through and ready to be added to the Sugaridoo Webshop: Polly the Chicken
(The Dutch pattern is instantly downloadable after payment, the English translation will be send out on the 5th of October.)

Now Polly would loove to introduce herself a bit:

“My name is Polly. Polly the chicken. I’m the newest edition to the Sugaridoo amigurumi collection.⠀

I love to go for a swim in the sea in the morning, I bake the most delicious Danish pastries and I wear hand knitted socks to bed. Oh, and I’m always searching for my keys. Why is it that keys like to play hide and seek when you want to leave the house?”

Let’s celebrate

To celebrate this new pattern, use the discount code POLLYPOLLY to get 15% off this whole week!

Let’s grab a hook, some yarn and make all the chickens! :D

Love,
Irene

Yes! You just finished a beautiful quilt top. All you have to do now is baste it and quilt it, so you can turn your UFO (UnFinished Object) into an AFO (Awesome Finished Object). ‘Just’ pick a quilt design and get started.

“Turn your UFO into an AFO”

Does this stage make you a little bit uncomfortable? Do you want to put your quilt top on your pile of nearly finished projects and just think about it for a little longer? You’re not alone! I’ve heard so many people hesitate to finish their quilts because they can’t decide on a quilt design.

So, I decided to make a video on it. Not that I am the expert. Not even close. Did you see the video where I show my 364 WIP’s? BUT, I do think I’m getting better on quilting my quilts. Best thing: I’m spending less and less pondering over which quilt design to choose for years before I finish my quilts.

Wanna become a master in finishing those quilts? Grab your copy of my free ebook and check out the video below for my five step master plan.

Just in case you want the sort version:

STEP 1: Take a good look at your quilt top. Are there any clues in there? Maybe it is a big design which would work well with a smaller overall quilt pattern. Maybe there are shapes in your design around which you can echo with straight lines? Maybe your quilt top is made from squares so you can stitch in the ditch or stitch just beside the ditch.

STEP 2: Go through the 101 ideas for quilting ebook with your quilt top in mind and see if there are designs that resonate with you. That call your name.

Step 3: The most important step. Make a choice. Just pick a design. The moment you decide, you can finally start quilting your quilt.

STEP 4: Go quilt your quilt. Hop behind your sewing machine, grab some thread and start quilting.

STEP 5: Might sound like a weird step, but I love this one. When your half way through quilting your quilt. Don’t hesitate and finish it! Don’t have second thoughts on your choice. The only way to get better at quilting, at picking quilt designs, is by doing. So go and practice. Finish a quilt so you can start a new project. Done is so much batter than perfect!

Well okay, maybe that was the not so very short version. But that’s it. No rocket science right? There is no better feeling than to get your machine running and finish some quilts if you ask me.

Love,
Irene

Ok. Well. I thought it would be nice to get a bit organized and finally get an overview of everything that was laying around in my studio as Work In Progress (WIPs). Wow. I suspected that there would be quite a few, but I didn’t know that I was working on SO many project.

I’ll talk you through everything that is going in on in the Sugaridoo Studio:

And for my own record.. Here’s the list:

My WIP’s

Quilts

  • Orange triangle quilt
  • Penguin quilt for baby Jules
  • Round robin for our quilt bee
  • Bunny mini Quilt
  • Finish binding on music quilt
  • And, believe it or not, the Sugaridoo Sampler
  • Tree Tree House
  • Music Potholders
  • Improv quilt

Crochet projects

  • Huge Polly the chicken
  • Bunny Bo
  • Crochet blanket
  • Charlie the Cat

New Patterns

  • Release Polly the Chicken pattern
  • Release Owly mini quilt pattern

Events

  • Crochet party 22nd of Sept
  • Brei en Haakdagen in Zwolle
  • Kreadoe
  • Crochet party 24th of Nov