Sewing Curves

Many quilters go for years making quilt after quilt, always using straight lines–and avoiding curves.  But when you’re ready, the books listed below show several methods of piecing curves into beautiful patterns, with pins or without.  Updated July 8, 2019.


Barber, Barbara.  Foolproof Curves:  Quilts with Bias Strips & Continuous Paper Piecing.  C&T Pub., 2004.  112 pages + patterns.  Book #1552.  (This book aims to make sewing curves easier by the use of bias strips and paper piecing, devoting half of the book to each technique.  A gallery, numerous tips and several projects are included.)  [Tags:  Curves, Paper Piecing]

Barkle, Peggy. Blendable Curves: Stack, Slice & Sew Unique Quilts in a Weekend. C&T Pub., 2007. 64 pages. Book #1660. (This book shows how to make a quilt using gentle curves, with each piece having both concave and convex elements, using a “slice and shuffle” method. Included are 10 quilt projects, mostly curvy variations of classic block patterns.) [Tags: Curves, Patchwork]

Bowles, Debbie. Cutting Curves from Straight Pieces. AQS, 2001. 111 pages. Book #1247. (Here are lessons for creating single curves, multiple curves, arcs and half circles. The author includes instructions for 17 projects.) [Tags: Curves]

Dales, Judy B. Curves in Motion: Quilt Designs & Techniques. C&T Pub., 1998. 160 pages. Book #1418. (The emphasis in this book is design, specifically helping quilters design their own quilts using curves. Fabric selection and piecing curves are also discussed. A few simple projects can be found at the end of the book, mostly for experimentation with the author’s method.) [Tags: Design, Curves, Piecing]

Nelsen, Susan, and Loraine Manwaring. Curves Ahead! All American Crafts, 2011. 80 pages. Book #3086. (The authors share tips “to drive away all your fears of sewing curves.” Their technique for the 10 included quilts uses freeform curves and tape.)

Ornelas, Annette. Peeled-Back Patchwork: Curves Without Piecing. AQS, 2004. 111 pages. Book #1548. (Here the author introduces her method of “incorporating folded shapes into the seams and turning the folds back on themselves to reveal curved designs.” She includes 12 projects.) [Tags: Patchwork, Curves] Note: This book needs repair!

Peters, Paulette. Curved Piecing. That Patchwork Place, 1999. 79 pages. Book #1402. (This book covers basic techniques for piecing curves and designing a pattern with curves. Included in the 8 projects are classic curved quilts such as Drunkard’s Path and Wedding Ring.) [Tags: Curves, Patchwork]

Phillips, Cheryl. Circle A Round: Making Circles Fun! Phillips Fiber Art, 2004. 40 pages. Book #1587. (This book advocates using rulers to make “frames” for circular pieces.) [Tags: Curves, Circles]

Stuart, Trish. Quilt Art: Curves Made Easy. Twisted Threads, 2003. 16 pages. Book #1601. (Most of this book consists of a full sized pattern. There are a few pages on sewing with curves and fabric painting, plus directions for two quilts.) [Tags: Curves, Fabric Painting] Note: Loose pages. Needs repair.


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