Have you been bitten by the English Paper Piecing bug? If you dream of quilts in hexies, I would like to invite you to follow along with me over the next few weeks as I talk about everything you need to know about EPP. Today, I will be answering the first question most people have, “What English Paper Piecing Supplies do I need?” I hope you will join me as we talk about this and a little more about why I love this method so much.
For so long I felt discouraged, I could never find time to create the beautiful quilts that were filling my instagram feed. How is a busy mom supposed to find time to quilt like that?
Not to mention my sewing room is the dining room table. Way to many times has my husband had to move the sewing machine to eat dinner. If only my family didn’t have to eat so much, maybe then I could finish a project!
BUT, the day I found English Paper Piecing I found the balance I so desperately needed. I now had a way to create beautiful quilts, and my husband even gets to eat dinner at the table!
With English Paper Piecing there is no need for a craft room. I can work on my projects any time or place, since I’m not tied down to a sewing machine. All I needed was just a few basic supplies, and the quilts in my instagram feed could become a reality.
I feel like so many people put off learning how to sew, or like me, are hesitant to take on a sewing project because of time, space or money, but English Paper Piecing tackles ALL of those issues.
Can you tell that I’m a little passionate about the subject?
That passion is why I’m starting a series on English Paper Piecing.
Today I want to share with you the English Paper Piecing Supplies you need and also the ones I personally use.
The Basic supplies really consist of paper, fabric, something to cut the first two things with, needle and thread. That’s it! Of course, as all quilters do, we like to make it more complicated with our fancy supplies, myself included. But, in all reality, this is an old technique. Which means it was done with only a few supplies. I even read that women used to cut up their mail to make shapes for English Paper Piecing.
Below you will find a complete list of the supplies that I use for English Paper Peicing. Remember the basics that I listed above are what you have to have, and the extras listed are purely preferences and not absolutes.
- Paper Pieces– I’ll confess mine are usually bought from Paper Pieces. For me the time it saves me is well worth the small cost of buying shapes. If you plan to cut your own you will just need paper and paper cutting scissors. Be sure to keep the paper thickness (weight of the paper) consistent throughout a project.
- Templates– I either make or buy a template that is 1/3 inch bigger than my paper pieces to act as a guide when cutting my fabric.
- Small Rotary Cutting Mat and Cutter– This helps me cut through several layers at one time, but scissors will get the job done too. If you choose to use scissors, one benefit is you have much less fabric waste. I will occasionally use scissors if I have limited fabric for a project, but to save time I usually use my rotary cutter.
- Needles– I use a Milliners Straw needle size 11. I will warn you, the eye of this needle is tiny, so you may want to add a needle threader to the list.
- Thread– I have played around with several different types of thread to come to the conclusion that a 60wt Polyester thread is best. When sewing on my sewing machine I love cotton thread, but when I tried to use it in EPP it didn’t hold up. Going over the paper repeatedly would cause my cotton thread to shred and break a lot! I like to use these little Superior Thread Bobs in my English Paper Piece Sewing, and neutral colors usually work for most projects.
- Glue Stick– This is where English Paper Piecing gets modern. I’ll be honest I fought the glue stick method for a long time, just because it was modern and trendy. But, at the end of the day if I can get more done in less time, well why wouldn’t I work more efficiently! I have bought these glue pens specially designed for EPP. The benefit of using these is they have smaller tip, so your gluing is a little more controlled. To be honest though, I have a ton of washable glue sticks I bought at back to school time for $0.25, so I will be using them for my next project. I already use them when I applique and have had no problem.
- Binding Clips– I use these Clover Wonder Clips, but any kind of clip or paper clip would work. I wouldn’t recommend regular stick pins though, I have found them way too frustrating to use.
Are you ready to get started? I hope you will be check back over the next few weeks as I walk through the English Paper Piecing process. If you have any comments, questions or concerns, please leave them below. I would love to help, and definitely let me know if you will be following along with these new tutorials.
More English Paper Piecing Inspiration:
Be sure to follow my For the love of EPP! Pinterest board for more inspiration