I absolutely love doing paper piecing because of the accuracy. My points always match and my material is always stable with the paper pattern. But, just because you can draw a pieced design does not necessarily mean it can be easily paper pieced.
Two of the biggest issues I see when teaching paper piecing drafting is that the images people want to paper piece can’t really be sewn with a paper piecing method, or they are so complex the beginner designer may just give up. The other concern is when you design a paper pieced block that has multiple seams coming together at one place and it creates an impossible bulk in the seams that are difficult to make it lie flat with pressing. These issues can be prevented when thinking ahead during the pattern drafting process.
Take a look at the image below. It is very intricate and would be a challenge to create as a paper pieced design.
You need to think ahead as to how you would create this design and how you would sew it. I try to think of the sewing process while I am designing. Using this image, I created a more simplistic layout to be paper pieced in EQ8. Often, when I begin to color my segments, I can see where I still need to edit my design in order to be able to piece it correctly.
The other way I create paper pieced designs is to make them so I can piece the entire design on one pattern piece. This is easier to deal with than having multiple segments of paper piecing and then joining the segments together. But, I also think about how my blocks connect with each other. I really don’t like to have multiple seams join together in one point. This makes for a very bulky intersection of seams.
Take a look at the design for a paper pieced block below. Notice how there are several seams created at the corners of the block. This block is from the EQ8 library. There would be multiple seams at the corners.
This next block is also from the EQ8 library. I prefer this block because it does not have any seams into the corners of the block. This will reduce the bulk when sewing blocks together. It is just a preference for me to not have to deal with these types of seams. Sometimes, depending on the pattern design, you may not be able to avoid the seams in the corners.
Try creating your own unique paper pieced designs with these thoughts in mind. It may just save you some headaches when you go to sew them at the machine!