Animal Quilts by Juliet van der Heijden: A Review

Animal Quilts by Juliet van der Heijden is a masterpiece of foundation paper piecing. It’s no secret that foundation paper piecing and I do not always see eye-to-eye. I love the results, but I’m loathe to spend the time on the construction method. Animal Quilts might just be the book to change all of that for me. Juliet’s skill at paper piecing pattern creation and her ability to teach through her words shines through in this book. Juliet has combined the art of making quilts with a platform for people to develop the skills they need to be life long foundation paper piecers.

Animal Quilts contains 12 paper piecing patterns and they’re amazing in their detail. The use of colour and print to convey movement and depth in the quilts is on point and it makes me long for the patience to make one of these for myself. My favourite quilt has to be the swan and I’ve added it to my must make list.

I am far from an expert when it comes to foundation paper piecing and so I really loved that Juliet covers everything from fabric selection, use of prints, scale and the basics of how-to foundation paper piece. It’s a great resource for those that are looking to either start foundation paper piecing or cement their skills with this technique.

I love that this book is so simply and cleanly styled. The book design works really well to help people focus in on the information they need and doesn’t overwhelm the reader. It’s a great book to give as a gift or to keep for yourself.

Win a Animal Quilts eBook

One lucky reader can win an ebook copy of Animal Quilts by leaving a comment on this post telling me what you love or fear about foundation paper piecing. Entries are open internationally. Give-away closes Tuesday 21 November. Winner will be announced in Gnome Gnews on Monday 26 November. You can subscribe by clicking here.

Because I love you all and I think that no quilter should be without a copy of Animal Quilts by Juliet van der Heijden I’m giving you a chance to win an ebook copy. Simply leave a comment on this post telling me what you love or fear about foundation paper piecing and you could win a copy (a bonus way to enter can also be found on my Instagram account by clicking here – look for the book cover). Competition is open internationally. Competition closes 11:59pm 21 November. Winner announced in the 27 November edition of Gnome Gnews (click here to subscribe).

Where to Buy Your Own Copy of Animal Quilts

You can purchase your very own copy at the following places by clicking on their links: Amazon | Sew and So UK

Blog Hop Dates & Links

Juliet has put together a fabulous list of bloggers and influencers to review her book and make projects from it. You can pop around the internet and find out more about her book and see some amazing projects via the links below.

Disclosure: F&W provided an electronic copy (eBook) of Animal Quilts to Juliet also provided me with a signed hard copy. All opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by the businesses involved. For further information about my disclosure policy please click here. This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase those items through my links I will earn a very small commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link, in fact in some cases I can offer you a better price via an affiliate link. I will not recommend something that I do not use myself. These commissions help me keep being able to provide you with great content for free. Thank you, in advance for your support!

Get Your Free Pattern Now!

Sign up to the GnomeAngel Newsletter and you can access your very own free pattern. Get the latest news, stay up-to-date with sew-alongs + events and receive the occasional free offer! Simply add your details below!

I respect your privacy and I won't send you spam. You can unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit


  1. I love the look of FPP, but fear that when I do it it is not going to look as neat as I wish it would. That something will be off and I will get mad at myself, then put it away to work on at another time.

  2. This is my new venture, just did a few small easy peas paper piecing to see if I am able. And right away I am loving it

  3. I’m a newbie to FPP but absolutely love it! The precision is sooo neat when it all comes together

  4. I just learned to FPP earlier this year and love it! I love the precision that is reflected in one’s finished work!

  5. After being frightened of fpp for years…iv finally tried it….now I love it 💙💙💙 as long as I have decent paterns

  6. I paper pieced roses as my first PP project and they came out exactly the same. The precision was great fun and very satisfying for someone who can be a bit hit and miss with their seams.

  7. I’m a beginner at paper piecing but I’ve found that I’m quite in love with the results and I have tartankiwi to thank!

  8. I must confess I’ve been a little afraid of trying paper piecing. I’m still only doing basic quilts, along with a couple of QAL’s so I can learn new techniques. I do however LOVE how precise paper piecing looks. If I give it a go, just maybe I can make a quilt where all the joins are perfect and it looks wonderfully marvelous. It’s definitely on my list to have a go.

  9. I love fpp, except when i have used too small a piece and got the angle a bit wrong. Unpicking stitches from paper runs the risk of ripping it off too soon.

  10. I’m a beginner with paper piecing. I enjoy the preciseness of the patterns and how they create a picture beyond the geometry of traditional patterns. I have visions of quilts I’d like to make. I just need to learn enough to design with paper piecing. Maybe this book would help me on my way!

  11. I’ve done a little basic paper piecing and loved the accuracy of this method. Tartan Kiwi’s animals are beautiful and I’d love to try more intricate and complex patterns.

  12. It took me weeks watching Jackie de Jonge’s dvd to get the reverse/backward idea in my mind, so now I really enjoy the challenge of most pp patterns and this book looks like it is full of neat items. Kathy in colo

  13. I love that when I paper piece I don’t have to fuss about the details… just follow the numbers and lines 🙂

  14. I do not do much PP, but I love the results. I think I tend not to do so much because you have to be in the right mind set to think about flips! Your book looks very inviting, hope I win!

  15. The first time I tried FPP and got PERFECT POINTS, I was hooked! Later I also started appreciating how you can do fussy layouts. Someday I’ll figure out how to create the patterns, but for now—bring on the FPP patterns! I love them!

  16. I love paper foundation, I have participated in a Craftsy course, hmm although I didn’t finish, it gave me the fundamentals and I have done some since, I love the fact that it is precise, and would love the idea of making the technique with animals in mind

  17. I’m a fan of the precision you can get with paper piecing. It can be fussy, and I’ve made my share of mistakes, but it’s always been worth the effort.

  18. I love paper piecing. I love that I can get really nice points and accurate seams. It is so fun to watch something come together piece by piece!

  19. I like the detail of FPP, I have never done a large piece. Would be nice to use FPP with theses animals:)

  20. I love paper piecing! You can ad a lot more dimension to a piece. This book is amazing … fingers crossed!!!

  21. I have been FPP/Paper piecing for many years. I enjoy the precision, yet there is a freeing type of flexibility in creating shapes as well. Love it, and thank you for the opportunity!

  22. I mostly have hated paper piecing , I never seem to be able to choose an appropriate size piece of fabric to fit the pattern piece– and “unseaming” with paper has it limitations. I took a course with David Sirota–paper piecing without tear and really liked it– his method may not be appropriate for every pattern but, just making a small quilt improved my ablitiy to see the pattern piece ?backwards which has helped me try paper piecing one again=== I love the animals and the butterfly

  23. I love how easy it is to make complicated things turn out so fabulous! My daughter would love the owl. I’m fascinated by the butterfly. This book looks amazing!

  24. I am very nervous about paper piecing. Anything that has small angles. So far I have ended up cutting something off In shouldn’t have.

  25. I’ve made a couple pincushions with foundation piecing. I LOVE the precision and perfect points of the finished project. I’d love to try the animal quilt!!

  26. I am by no means an expert paper piecer but I get by. 🙂 I love the intricate patterns that can be achieved. I don’t like having to sew many areas together to get the block. I just haven’t figured out the trick yet, I guess. Maybe the book can help. Thanks for the chance to win.

  27. I love getting those perfect points when paper piecing. It is just so incredibly pleasing! It is almost like origami to me. I find the process exhilarating. Although one thing i despise the most about FPP is having to rip a seam out! now i try to baste seams i’m unsure of so i can check if i covered! it’s been a little under a year now since i’ve learned how to FPP, I highly recommend taking “Mastering Foundation Paper Piecing with Carol Doak”; i wanted to know more than just the “basics” to FPP and her lesson definitely covers a lot more than just how to. For example, how to deal with directional fabrics! It’s really helped me step up my game!
    I’m so stoked to order this book! I put it on my wishlist in hopes someone in my family will purchase it for me for the holidays! The Owl is just so gorgeous! Looking forward to seeing what everyone makes!!!

  28. First time I tried pp, I hated it! I still am not a big fan of long, skinny triangles. Think I have a block. But I LOVE how tiny things and points come out!

  29. I’m intimidated by foundation piecing. I’ve never done it, but it seems complicated. BUT OMG I ❤ what you can make! I love these animals and I want to try! I love how you explained the book’s easy to follow directions and how-to.

  30. I love fpp but I’ve only used it for individual small squares that make up a quilt. Just yesterday I showed my daughter a bunch of quilts I could make for her. She liked NONE of them and told me she doesn’t like little repetitious blocks. She wants one giant animal (a polar bear specifically) in the middle. So you can see why I need this book!

  31. It takes me a while to get back in the hang of paper piecing, but I enjoy the way it turns out! This book looks lovely!

  32. I’m obsessed with foundation paper piecing! it ticks all the boxes of my obsessive compulsive tendencies and my perfectionism. I can’t buy fabric now without considering how I can use it in one of my next FFP projects. Pineapple block quilts are my favourite but really anything FPP will do. The design possibilities, the precision, I could go on and on ………..

  33. I have to admit that I have never tried paper piecing. It just looks way to complicated. I do love the results so I guess I should be brave and give it a try!

  34. I love the precision of paper piecing. I have no fears of it. Thanks for the chance to win this awesome book.

  35. I am just a beginner, so I haven’t decided if I love it or hate it yet. I love the animal quilts. The swan is beautiful!!!

  36. I love the structure- but hate removing the papers! Especially when I forget to shorten the stitches.

  37. This book looks awesome! I love paperpiecing for the amazing precise patterns you can make That panda is amazing!

  38. FPP is a great way to piece complex patterns, but I struggle to make the best use of the fabric. I think more practice is in order!

  39. Just tried FPP for the first time at AQC 2017. Love that you can use this method to get accurate seams however, I have a fear that I will get the fabric order the wrong way around.

  40. I love the precision of FPP, and all the character blocks that you just cannot achieve with regular piecing like the animals in “Animal Quilts.”

  41. I love the detail of FPP but am so worried about the accuracy required to make it look great.

  42. I love FPP, it is my favorite piecing technique! You get so much precision and can piece the tiniest details. I even love removing the paper in the end!

  43. I love everything about paper piecing. But mostly the process is slow and a bit meditative to me. Love the precision. Really hope to grab this book soon!

  44. foundation paper piecing is my favourite. great versatility for the designs. and i love tartan kiwi patterns. have used them before without problems.

  45. Love paper piecing- I am now working on a queen size with 6 inch squares. Having tons of fun. Would love to try the animals.

  46. You’ve got to be in it to win it & I missed being in the Fussy Cutter Club giveaway, fingers crossed

  47. I love FPP partly because I really have to think and pay attention to what I’m doing! It’s also very satisfying to have the block turn out perfectly!

  48. FPP is something I am really following in love with more and more because the wonderful world of different shapes and designs you can accomplish. Just like the patterns in this fabulous book.

  49. I love the precision of paper piecing but at the same time I detest the precision needed. It’s definitely a love/hate affair that I can’t get enough of!

  50. I love the precision of paper piecing. It’s extremely satisfying looking at a block that has been paper pieced and seeing all those lovely points!
    P.S. Can’t wait to check out your fussy cutting book – it’s currently flapping its pages to me and I’m super excited to get stuck into some of the projects included in it.

  51. I tried for a long time to make sense of foundation paper piecing instructions with little success until last year, when I attended a class at my local quilt shop. Now I love it, and I can see a lot more FPP in my future!

  52. FPP makes me feel like I can make just about anything. I love all kinds of quilting and the precision and ease of FPP is just the icing on the cake. 🙂

  53. I love the precision of FPP, but having only tried it once, I’ll be researching youtube and reading books to learn more!

  54. I love the results of FPP but loathe unpicking the teeny tiny stitches when I manage to get the angles slightly wrong and am tight with fabric resulting in a lack of coverage (yes, this happens nearly every time I do FPP…when will I learn?!). But seriously, I need a copy of this book! I think I want to make them all!

  55. I’ve only tried paper piecing a couple of times. I was really happy with the results, but it was nothing like these beautiful creations.

  56. I love the wow! factor of paper piecing and it’s endless possibilities. What time always worry about thought is waisting fabric by either cutting too big or too small!!

  57. Oh, paper piecing. I love it’s accuracy and clean look. I hate trying to get the paper off when it is hidden in seams. I hope you get a chance to make some of the animals in the book. I hope I do too.

  58. I really love paper piecing because it is so precise! But I fear all these tiny, tiny pieces you need for it.

  59. I just love paper piecing. IT is easy to do and all the lines are strait and the corners so Beatiful.

  60. Thank you for this opportunity. I love the precision of paper piecing. And the fact that you can create stunning pictures. It is like puzzling. You have many small pieces and suddenly it is a beautiful picture.

  61. I am always amazed to find that my piece actually looks like it is supposed to! I really enjoy it…I would love to watch someone in the process of creating a pattern, to see how that’s done.

  62. I’m afraid I would make one of those beautiful foundation pieced animals unrecognizable! But I would like to try it.


  63. I love everything about FPP. It was the first quilting technique I learned and it really stuck. I’ve done several of Juliet’s patterns from her Craftsy shop and have followed and loved her for years. The peacock is the first pattern that I plan to do in her new book.

  64. I love the fact that FPP is so accurate. That butterfly is a delight. Patterns that seem unachievable happen with FPP too 🤗

  65. I love paper piecing because you can make patterns too complicated to make any other way. I’d love to try some of these animal patterns!

  66. Paper piecing can be a pain in the butt but there’s no questioning the results and how stunningly accurate pictures can be. I’ve already completed one of the Tartankiwi’s patterns (the zebra) and being a novice, I was pretty happy with the result.

  67. Hi, I would love to learn paper piecing. I have never done it before. I make mosaics, stained glass, beading and quilting. I have a love for art and I can see that your quilts are an expression of art in itself. I would love to learn to do this with fabric. It seems like this paper piecing process allows one to do just that. Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

  68. I am learning to love FPP and usually use the freezer paper method so I don’t have to pull off papers in the end. I still have trouble lining up multiple sections. I love the designs in this book!

  69. I love FPP because the results are just amazing! It takes a little thinking too, which I also like. This book looks to be amazing!

  70. I love foundation piecing, but am still pretty new to it and I am SUPER slow. I love the fine details you can achieve with foundation piecing. Tartan Kiwi’s patterns are AMAZING!

  71. I love the precision of paper piecing but struggle to cut fabrics the correct size to fill angled spaces. The swan is wonderful and represents the town I’m from.

  72. My frustration is within the “guess wrong about amount of fabric to cover” or end up using way too much fabric and then running out of it! I know there are ways to pre cut the fabric.

  73. I definitely struggle with FPP…I manage just fine, until I need to assemble the different segments of a block together…somehow they never line up quite right. Always striving to get better though, and these are so beautiful, it would be inspiring to work towards!

  74. I’m intimidated by how to start a piece. I struggle with thoughts of which is the correct way because I don’t do it often enough. At the beginning of a class the instructor said to me that people either love it or they hate it. At the end of the class she asked me how I felt about PP and I was on the fence.

  75. I fear the re-do part of FPP…when my fabric is to short–it’s not where I want it. And for some reason it feels slower to me than other types of piecing. I love these patterns though.

  76. I used to hate how much fabric that I wasted using FPP. However, after watching some videos and reading some excellent tutorials, I am more comfortable with this techinque, and love the precision of the finished blocks. Tearing off the paper is still annoying, but the results are worth it.

  77. I love FPP and I love using directional prints but I fear the moment I have to use them because I always have to redo!!

  78. I look FPP – I love how by stitching a series of straight lines (no Y seams please!) you get some wonderfully complex patterns

  79. I love how precise it is and how intricate the results can be .. And I love Juliet’s patterns which I have purchased — so excited about her book!

  80. I love it when all the pieces are sewn together and you have something spectacular. I don’t like it when I try to outguess the pattern and then don’t plan out the colors correctly.

  81. I am a beginner but I like that I can get a nice 1/4 inch seam and the it slows my mind down, like handwork. My fear is cutting, I cut the wrong side off.

  82. I love paper piecing. The trickiest part for me is making sure my fabric piece is big enough when it is flipped for some of the crazy angles, so sometimes I just cut a big honking piece to make sure it is covered – wastes a bit more fabric, but saves a little of my sanity.

  83. I love the precision of my points with FPP but I get frustrated that I’m not always able to visualize if my scraps work for the placement so I use my seam ripper more that I want which adds frustration due to the small stitches.

  84. what i love about paper piecing is that it allows me to do very precise piecing of tiny little bits of fabric! i could never get it done right with traditional piecing… PP all the way!

  85. I love the accuracy of paper piecing and with all the beautiful fabrics available today the dimension and drama you achieve makes for masterpieces. I had not heard of this author snd cannot wait to explore their work

  86. I love the blocks using paper piecing method. However, I am terrified to try. It always looks like mistakes would really show. So terrified, but I’d love to try it. I’d love to win this book. Thanks.

  87. I love the amazing things that can be made by paper piecing! I have done many FPP projects and Juliet’s patterns are some of the best. This book is on the top of my wishlist!

  88. I, like you, Love the look of paper piecing but hate a couple parts of it- the mess it creates when taking off the papers plus not being able to get all the bits and bobs peeled off. I also struggle when the pattern doesn’t give me the size of the fabric for the piecing. I always seem to be short when I flip it over after I sew.

  89. I like that you can make about every motive you can think of with this, but I don’t like the waste of precious fabric scraaps

  90. I love f.paper piecing, but no matter how much i do it i just cannot get flipping triangles right. I spend ages getting it in the right place, sew in down, flip it over and its going off in the wrong direction…..

  91. I love the accuracy you get with fpp, but I don’t like how tiring it is on my hands and arms (from all the folding and pressing of the paper along the lines), maybe Juliet has a tip in her book to make it easier? I’m hoping to find out as it’s on my Christmas list! Looking forward to seeing your swan x

  92. I love paper piecing but hate how many small, irregular scraps it creates! I hate throwing them out, but never know how to use them. This book look amazing – would love to win!

  93. I looooovvvveeee fpp. It may take a bit of work but the end result is well worth it. It is so precise.

  94. As frustrating as it is. I find it a real challenge. I love butterflies in particular and I would love a chance to win this book.

  95. I love being able to colour the papers first before I sew. I also love the ease of sewing it together – the lines are all there, just sew over them!

  96. I kinda love it. I love not having to worry about 1/4″ seams – just have to sew on the line! (even I can do that!) I don’t know if it’s just me, but I find it frightfully messy!

  97. I find it very time consuming. It takes me ages to sew but it seems to even take ages to pick fabric. I do love the result though and the quilts in the book are amazing. I never thought I would want to make a swan quilt until I saw the one from the book.

  98. Hallo!
    I love paperpiecing. YouTube can make so realistisch design. I have made flowers, animails, Hauses and a Marines compass.😊l’ll hope to win this book.

  99. I love foundation paper piecing. All the small details that can come out in a project. The possibilities are endless. Thanks. I really want to make the swan

  100. I love FPP because it takes the fear out of complicated piecing, allowing for super intricate patterns to be sewn together fairly effortlessly! I love FPP and these patterns are gorgeous!! I definitely need a copy of this book in my life! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT!

  101. I have not tried FPP yet but would love to start with this book!! I just love the mirrored swans and the polar bear (which is one of my favorite animals!). If I don’t win I will definitely get a copy of this book!

  102. I love the results of foundation paper piecing and I find it time consuming…I suppose I’m spoiled and used to chain piecing. Also it can be challenging to get my sections to line up properly.

  103. I love the precision of paper piecing even thigh i usually have to redo at least one seam every tone!!

  104. I’ve only done a few easy FPP blocks. Sometimes a don’t start with enough fabric and end up with a small uncovered edge piece. I plan to practice and do more – someday.

  105. I tried once to paper piece but it was a mess. I would love to learn to do it so I could enjoy such patterns as these.

  106. I used to turn up my nose and think FPP was “cheating”! However, I have been reborn as an FPP addict! I love the exactness and detail and being able to create beautiful figures rather effortlessly. What scares me the most is whe you’re on that final seam . . . And it doesn’t line up!!!! Argh!!!

  107. The Rhino looks like such a challenging paper piecing project since working on the Farmer’s Wife!

  108. I fear paper piecing. I have not been very successful in paper piecing in the past. So I try not to sew blocks that use pp. I am hoping that this book will motivate me to attempt pp again.

  109. I would love to win an ecopy of this book! I agree with you about the slow pace of FPP, but the results can be absolutely amazing.

  110. I love the accuracy I achieve when FPP. Also, if doing multiples of the same block, it is easy to streamline the process.

  111. I love FPP and Juliet’s patterns!! I love that so many shapes and designs can be created using FPP.

  112. I love foundation paper piecing. I feel so accomplished when I can complete something very intricate!!!!

  113. I love foundation paper piecing and managed to do a class many years ago with Carol Doak while she was out here for Quilting in the Highlands! 💕😀🐶

  114. I have not tried FPP yet (only just learning EPP), but I would love to try. I even have my ruler ready 🤓

  115. I love the preciseness of FPP and how the design comes together. My fear is not remembering the “reverse” of some FPP patterns when you want the finished section to have the fabric in a specific order…..I’ve gotten “twisted” around on that a few times..!

  116. I love the versitiliy of FPP, but I’m still a beginner. I need more practice on awesome patterns like this!