Experiment in Enlarging Paper-Pieced Patterns

Right after Sewing Under Rainbow’s Last Minute Christmas QAL, I dove into making my boys some big floor pillows. I had these superhero paper-pieced patterns from Fandom In Stitches website bookmarked for awhile. And, without looking at the patterns to refresh my memory, I ordered 20×20 inch pillow forms.

Yeah, what’s the first thing every pattern says? Read through carefully before beginning.

So, these patterns are for 5-inch blocks. However,  I have been wondering if you can enlarge paper-pieced patterns. These two patterns are at a beginner level, symmetrical, with only a few pieces each – good patterns to experiment with. I enlarged the patterns 200% in Photoshop Elements and off I went sewing.

The only difficulty I came across, if you can call it that, were the seam lines being bigger than 1/4 inch. Solved easily enough.quarterseam

The blocks were 10.5 inches square and I added 6 inch borders around. This is the first time I made pillows, so I used Crazy Mom Quilts Envelope Backed Pillow tutorial to finish them.


Has anyone else experimented with enlarging patterns? Were you successful? Any tips?


Last Minute Christmas Quilt Along

I have been enjoying Sewing Under Rainbow’s Last Minute Christmas QAL! I do enjoy paper-piecing and am happy to develop/push my capabilities in this area.

I’m not a traditional Christmas person so I was thinking how to mix it up a bit. I decided on a dark blue background 1) because white does not stay white in my household (2 boys + 2 black cats = stains within minutes) 2) December is the time of year where early nights are still pleasant and it’s wonderful to look at Christmas lights. (Come February this is no longer true.)

I choose teal and coral as the main colors as I love this combination and it’s still in the Christmas green and red spectrum without being traditional. I also had some traditional green and red on hand to add in as necessary.

The Tree block was up first. I took a chance and put the green and teal adjacent to each other in the 2-toned tree. I love the clash of those two colors, so I used it through out.


The two snowflakes are my favorite blocks and decided to use them for cornerstones. Since I was doing two of each snowflake, I  used opposite placement of the teal and green for a little variety.

I chose four blocks for the center. I wanted to tell a story while including the blocks that meant the most to me during Christmas. So I chose the Tree, Reindeer, Shooting Star, and Angel. At first I thought to keep the layout in a traditional grid.


But didn’t really like it. Plus, my concept of telling a story was somewhat diminished. So I did more of a story board. I trimmed down some of the blocks to keep it somewhat square.


This quilt turned out so much better than what I had imagined! Now I just need a little more patience until my good quilting machine gets to our new home.


(Not) Planning a Quilt

Do you start a project, inspired by a block or pile of fabric, but don’t really plan it all out? Normally, I’m a planner. But every once in a while I have a lapse. Which is plaguing me right now.

I started this City Blocks pattern by Jenifer at 42 Quilts with a great pile of Cherrywood fat quarters with some stash fabric to match.

City Blocks pattern by  42 Quilts

So excited to start I didn’t think through to the end.

And then I got about a quarter of the blocks sewn and realized that I needed to figure out the end.

City Blocks pattern by  42 Quilts

After a week of contemplating, I might have figured it out.

Old Towne Quilt by Red Patch. City Blocks pattern by  42 Quilts.

I like the completed blocks with probably two of these “backwards” blocks. I’m hoping to have enough green left over to do a green sashing (maybe scrappy), along with an outer cream sashing. Here’s to hoping this works out. (And it would be great to get some more sunny days for some better pictures.)