Templates for patchwork, so many options!
Have you ever purchased a quilt pattern and then realised that you’ll need to make templates from the provided pattern as the block pieces are not all straight forward for rotary cutting?
There are lots of template options when it comes to these type of quilts and personally they’re my favourite kind of quilt. I love tracing templates and prepping my blocks ready to handpiece. Usually working in chunks, cutting 5-10 blocks at a time and then piecing.
For Chockablock BOM I’m offering a new product by Eppiflex. Their templates are made from BOPET ( biaxially oriented Polyethylene Terephthalate) which in everyday terms is "flat PET”. You can also recycle this type of plastic once they’ve reached their end of life. These templates are new to me and presently are used for English paper piecing. However I’ve recently tested them for hand piecing and love the results. I also love that they weigh a lot less and come without seam allowances. The only consideration would be with larger pattern pieces to use small pattern weights or a couple of Sewtites work really well, and/or add some texture to the back of the template to help with any slipping (glitter washi tape or similar, or if you’re like me you can rough up the back of the template a little with your nail file). My 2022 BOM templates and are made with this material and I’m excited to see if you love them as much as I do.
Paper with self lamination
One option is to print the provided templates out and then using self adhesive laminating sheets apply to the sheets and then cut out your template shapes, the laminate will help reinforce the edges.
Straight paper or cardboard templates are ok for single or minimal use but if you’re using a template over and over it’s likely to distort with repeated use if it’s plain paper or cardboard. However, you’ll want to consider printing the templates out on heavier paper, if you’re able, to give them a little bit of bulk.
Heavy board and matt laminate
I recently was testing Chockablock templates and needed a set of templates, to save time I sent out my pdf to a print shop (Officeworks here in Australia) and had them printed on 300gsm board and matt laminated. Then when I got the sheets back I cut out my templates. They were nice and rigid and did the job!
You can purchase template plastic to trace your templates on to and cut out. You can also reuse any flat plastic from food packaging for this purpose. I haven’t tried this Creative Grids template plastic but I like that it’s textured on the back! Clever.
Acrylic templates are thicker plastic often with seam allowances included and drilled holes. These are a great option and a commonly available used material for patchwork templates.
You’ll find sometimes that templates can be slippery and hard to ‘anchor’ down whilst you’re tracing. There are a few options you have to manage this.
- Textured medical tape
- Template dots
- Glitter washi tape
If you find the templates you're using are a little larger you might consider using some small pattern weights to help anchor the pattern piece. How amazing are these ones from Foxglove & Field.