Americana Star Paper Quilt Block

Hello, my name is Carolina, and I’m a quilting addict. For those of you who are regular readers, you know this already. I love to sew and quilt. When I started playing with these Core’dinations papers, I realized all the possibilities! Because the color goes all the way through to the center of the paper, no matter how much I cut, tear, or punch these papers, I’ll never get a white line! Which also means no white “halos” around my stitching. Perfect for quilting on paper!

I decided to make a simple star quilt block. If you want to follow along, I should warn you that there are a lot of similarities when quilting on fabric and on paper… but many differences as well. Paper doesn’t have the “give” that fabric does, so if you are not super accurate, your mistakes will show more. But to me “flaws” are part of the process, so I try to embrace them! There are also some tricks to quilting on paper, but I’ll cover those as I go through this project…

What you need:
2 colors of Core’dinations Cardstock (2 patterns is even better)
Paper cutter
Bone Folder
Small pointy paper scissors
Freezer paper
Sewing Machine
Glue Dots

I started by cutting my pieces. From the blue, I cut 4 squares, each 3″x3″, and 4 squares each 2.5″x2.5″. From the red I cut 4 squares each 3”x3″ and 1 square 4.5″x4.5″

I drew a line from one corner to the other, across the backs of the 3″ blue squares.

Putting a red 3″ square underneath with the textured sides facing eachother, I stitched on either side of the line, 1/4″ away. Note: NOT on the line. Then I cut down the line and folded my seam open with a bone folder. This makes a half-square triangle.

Note when stitching on paper with a sewing machine: Nothing dulls scissors quite as fast as paper does… and the same holds true for needles. Once you have used a needle to sew on paper, do not use it to stitch on fabric.

I trimmed the block down to 2.5″, and repeated the process with all the 3″ squares, turning them all into half-square triangles.

I stitched the half-square triangles into pairs, and again pressed the seam open.

Then it was time to stitch the block together. I laid out all the pieces, then stitched the pieces into rows, then the rows into a block.

It was about this time that I was having trouble with all my folded seams on the back getting caught on the stitch plate of my machine. Most machines have different layers, levels, and plates that are not normally an issue, because fabric just glides right over them. To help the paper quilt block glide more smoothly, I covered the base of my machine in freezer paper, with the shiny side up.  I just cut a rectangle in the middle so the feed dogs could still do their work, and so the paper wouldn’t get in the way of the actual sewing going on. The shiny, plastic side of the freezer paper helped my quilt block feed over my machine much better!

Also, all the layers of cardstock created a lot of bulk in the back of my block, so I cut away the excess. I could NEVER do this when quilting fabric, but for paper it is just fine.

Once the quilt block was put together, it was time to add some fun! I used the Core’dinations sander to distress the paper a bit…

And then I added quilting stitches on top! I purposely left long threads when adding the quilting.

I attached the whole block to the mat that came with the frame using glue dots. I used glue dots on the back of the mat to secure the loose ends of the threads. I could have trimmed them, but I like the extra touch that says “I really was stitched on a sewing machine”

Baby seemed to like the result too.


  1. How do you make this looks so easy?? Love the idea of quilting with paper. Pinned!

  2. This is fabulous. I never could have guessed that was quilted PAPER!

  3. A paper quilt block?? Genius!!!

  4. Oh wow this is fabulous!!! You are so awesome!! Lil M and I use the one you made me many moons ago LOL
    miss you xoxo

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  6. Too cute! I enjoy sewing but keep it pretty simple with pillows, curtains etc. I would love to learn how to quilt some day.


  1. […] I’ve ALWAYS wanted to sew some paper.  Melissa just sewed her Valentine Paper Garland. And Carolina sewed this quilt block with paper! […]

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