Nero's Post II (2013-2015)

by Teje Karjalainen



Hello dear friends! I hope you are all fine and having a great spring! We have had already really hot weather. This weekend we had Easter here in Greece and still today it’s a holiday. So it has been really long weekend. Many days I have been waiting to show you how I sew those little octagons and squares.

paper piecing octagons

I started this project to have something to sew where ever I am and when I may have only short time during the busy summer. But as you see it has been quicker than I expected and soon I start to quilt it!


Mostly I have been sewing outside with Nero and Hanna. Often having our coffee brake at the same time. You may guess that Nero is dreaming to get piece of my bun!

First I started to baste octagons with papers I had printed from HERE.


I saw someone somewhere using paper clips and they work for me. Perhaps not the quickest way, but with them it’s really easy to make the basting stitches. And making paper piecing, we are in no hurry! You can baste by passing your thread through the paper or only the fabric. I feel it’s easier if it’s through the paper.

Then I cut small squares using a little template made with hard paper. With this template I also fold all the edges and I don’t baste them with papers.


Then it was time to start to sew them together as blocks of nine octagons – adding small white squares between.


Because I haven’t had time to make a quilt with granny squares, I thought I could try to make these to remind crochet granny squares.


After making these blocks, it was time to put them in order and start to sew them together.


It’s easy to sew octagons together but with the little squares you need to be patient.


You can see the lines on folded edges and they help you to sew the squares on a right place. Then just turn your work so that you can sew the next side.


This may feel first very complicated and it’s is a little bit, but you get used to it, as I did.

Then I sew three blocks together …



I sew with the same thread as long as I can. If I can’t continue some where but I have still thread enough, I make few stitches to secure the corner and then I lead the thread under the seam allowance to the next corner. There I make also first few secure stitches and then continue sewing. Look next photos … first I put the needle in the seam allowance …


Then I take the needle with thread out in the corner where I want to continue. Look where the scissors show …


Now I can sew the other two edges of the little white square.


Now I’m sewing more white squares between the rows so I can sew the rows together.


This is quite fun pattern and I would love to make bigger quilt like this but with sewing machine. For my next EPP project I think I use hexagons or even squares.

I have made a separate page for Paper Piecing – you find it up on my blog. There are lots of useful and helpful inspiring links for paper piecing – for English paper piecing as well as for Foundation Piesing.

When Nero lifted his head from the table, this was what I saw behind of him … Nelli had went for a walk to the pool and looked from there what we are doing …


I had some strange ‘problems’ with writing my posts and that’s why I’m behind of my schedule (which I don’t really have). I have finished the second quilt with hb’s shirts and hope to show it to you soon.

Weather has cooled a little bit and there should be some cloudy days, so then I have to be busy in the garden.

You remember that 17th of May starts the Blogger’s Quilt Festival – have you decided what quilt to show? And in June Jennifer from ‘Ellison Lane Quilts’ is having a Mini Quilt party, where I hope to have something to enter. Maybe I have finished this octagon mini-table-quilt. This year you can enter also pillows.


Thank you for visiting and reading my blog! I hope I inspired you to make (more) English paper piecing and to sew by hand! I think it’s very good way to enjoy sewing in summer, when we like to be outside and perhaps go for trips, holidays etc.

Thank you for your lovely comments! I have missed you while this un-planned short brake. Hope to see and hear from you soon again! Have a wonderful time!


PS. I like to see your photo on your blog so today when I ‘had’ to put make up to go out with friends, I did my best to take a new, decent photo for you … I’m happy with the background …



Author: Teje

I am a Finnish woman living in Crete in Greece. Quilting, sewing, knitting, crochet and if there is still time, reading and painting, with happy company of our two sweet dogs and one cat!


  1. Hi Teje… I LOVE your photo, it’s wonderful to finally see the “whole” you…LOL. You look just great. I love this new patchwork…maybe one day I could try this as it does not need a machine, meanwhile I shall have to make do with my paper patchwork! Happy Tuesday my friend,
    Jane x

    • Thank you so much Jane! I’m happy that I have started to hand sew. It’s not for all projects but for fun and to to be able carry with. I’m sure that I shall continue. Have a lovely rest of the week! x Teje

  2. Lovely hand sewing, you are such a talented lady. So nice to see the latest version of the talented lady face.

  3. Hello beautiful friend! So lovely to see your smiling face.

    Wow! I’m loving your paper piecing project. It’s absolutely gorgeous and very inspiring.

  4. Welcome back! Nice to see you in front of your gorgeous quilt Teje. I love your octagons and squares. You must have a lot of patience to work with such small pieces of fabric. The results are magical 🙂 Have a wonderful week! Avis x

    • Thank you Avis! I have patience and like to finish this because I’m looking for to hand quilt this! I feel that I missed ‘small work’ after making the men’s shirt quilts. Have a lovely day! x Teje

  5. You have such pretty eyes T! And I love your new blog additions too! We have been thinking of a foreign holiday this year, lovely to see your apartments. And your EPP is coming along beautifully! Jxo

  6. Your “Granny Squares” are so awesome! Inserting those squares seem really putsy until you get the ‘hang’ of it. Handwork is so nice…so portable and your garden setting is so perfect for such hand-stitching! Great photo of you, also!! Went for a motorcycle ride today and had my new “shades” to shield my eyes from the beautiful sun. They are so wonderful and a huge “thank you” for choosing my name!! Blessings, Doreen

    • Thank you so much Doreen! I’m happy to hear you need your ‘shades’! But I’m also happy I don’t need mine today, because now it’s not too hot to make some gardening. Have a great day! x Teje

  7. Well now, Pretty Woman, aren’t you the clever one. Love your project, you have a bucket load of patience piecing those granny squares together,but to a lovely end. Nero is patient,too. Hope he got a small bite. Sonja

    • Thank you Sonja for your sweet words! Nero is such a good boy – even he’s alone at home with the best goodies on the table, he never takes anything. And the same with Hanna. They are spoiled and get always lots of bites! Have a lovely day! x Teje

  8. I love Nero at the table. It is a bit tricky when they can put their chin on the table. Your EPP looks really pretty. I have just tried some needle turn appliqué for the first time. I am not ready for paper piecing yet.. You look lovely in your photo.

    • Thank you so much Val! Our puppies are spoiled but so good that they never take anything from the table. I haven’t tried needle turn applique but I think it’s great method. Have a great day! x Teje

  9. Really lovely EPP project Teje. I love those octagons although sewing the square looks a bit tricky! I baste through the paper too, I just find it easier to take the stitches and paper out at the same time.

    Nice to see your photo too – love your background! Enjoy your gardening.

  10. What a lovely photo of you and your quilt. I really like your octagons and squares. They are just like granny squares 🙂

  11. Awesome tutorial! I love the picture of you too… Thanks for sharing!

  12. Teje! How beautiful your quilt is, i love the small pieces and the lovely colors! And I loved seeing you! I agree it’s so nice to see our friends. Thank you for sharing how you made this quilt, I hope to try it one day. I really loved your moomintroll post too, love those books!

    • Thank you so much Lori! Your knitting bag is in my mind today … This mini quilt is now too much to carry with me, so I need a project bag for those crochet flower squares. Have a great trip and weekend! x Teje

  13. I love your photo – you’re so pretty! Your octagons and square are as pretty as you!!

  14. Your EPP project is just stunning. And I LOVE your photo!

  15. Beautiful pic of you. Been wondering what you were up to lately. Love the epp , I am trying to get my skillbuilder done . I am halfway with the Epp block and hate Alyssa’s method. Slowly I”ll get it done. Do you whipstitch or ladderstitch?

    • Thank you so much Kathy! I have been in the garden but now it’s raining so I can sew more. I don’t know how those stitches are called … could you see it on the photo? I have to learn what stitches I use. How is Alyssa’s method? x Teje

  16. Hello sweet Teje,

    You look lovely, and oh yes, very Finnish to me too 🙂 Wonderful to see you, I mean SEE you 🙂

    And I can’t say ANYTHING about all that hand-sewing, I’m speechless. Kudos to you!

    Lovey day, dear friend!


  17. Great tips, thanks!! Your blocks are gorgeous. All that tiny hand-sewing… wow!

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