Printing freezer paper patterns

Sneak peek at my latest quilt. Original photo by James Wheeler.


For my pictorial quilts, I design the pattern on the computer, straight from the picture.  To get it on the freezer paper, I cut the freezer paper to A4 size (Australia’s standard size computer paper).  If you’re in the US, you can cut it to 8.5″ x 11″.  The top ¼” of these pages are ironed to pieces of standard printer paper. When ironing freezer paper, make sure the iron is dry and not on the steam setting.  The page is then put into the printer tray so the design will be printed on freezer paper with the ironed side going through the printer first.  My printer is 11 years old and this technique works perfectly on it.  (The printer’s name is You scumbag!!! and has been more than once threatened with defenestration.)



Ironing along the edge of the sheets with the freezer paper (paper side) on top.


The pattern is then printed and the backing page gently peeled off and the pattern is ready to go.  If the pattern is larger than the freezer paper, tile print the pages, trim two edges off each page and iron the pages together so that one untrimmed edge is ironed under the trimmed edge of the corresponding page.  Don’t forget to add overlap to each page in the printer settings.



Lining up the overlap to iron.


The pattern and the original picture is printed on the page so I don’t have to transfer any notation on the patch.  It saves a lot of time (i.e. weeks) and drafting especially if you’re working with a thousands of patches.

As I’ll be cutting up the freezer paper pattern, I print out two more copies of the pattern on regular paper as a reference.  I only tape a few pieces of one copy together at a time so I don’t have a large copy at the sewing machine.  It’s just the section I’m working on at the time.  The other copy is fully taped together and pinned to the design wall.  The finished sections of the quilt top are pinned to it.

If you’re printing quilting patterns on freezer paper, cut these out carefully and smoothly.  Iron the design in place and trace around it with your favourite marker.  Peel off the design and quilt it.  The freezer paper pattern can be used repeatedly.



Examples of quilting patterns ironed onto fabric. Trace around them and peel off gently.


Happy quilting,


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