A while back, I was making a sewing machine cover for The Red Queen (my embroidery machine) and I decided I wanted patchwork cat blocks on it. I drafted a quick pattern to re-create a cat block I’d seen before, and here it is in all it’s stumpy cat glory. (The finished cat ended up looking a bit squashed.)
Since then I’ve been futzing with the pattern on and off. I decided to finish it for the Put A Cat on It Sew Along, and I think it’s finally reached a usable state.
Disclaimer: I did not invent this block! I saw it being used in a Chinese patchwork book I flipped through and thought it was super cute, so I re-created it on my own. (Actually now thinking about it, it was probably a Japanese book that had been translated into Chinese.)
Disclaimer #2: This is my first time doing a pattern for a block so I’m sure I did all sorts of stuff wrong. Apologies in advance, please bear with me, and feel free to give me advice on how to do better next time!
All you need for this block is a few scraps of 2 different colors (one for the cat and one for the background), and a printout of the pattern.
Seam Allowance is ¼”. Finished block is 5 ½” x 5 ½”.
Cut out fabric pieces using the pattern. Try to be precise as possible because this block is really finicky.
Starting with the base of the block, match up the notches for the Body and one Body Background piece and stitch.
Iron the seam towards the cat body. Repeat with other Body Background piece.
Now we’re going to piece together the top. Match up the notches for one of the Ears pieces and the Ears Background. I find it works better if I start sewing from side opposite the notch because the machine is less likely to eat the fabric like it does sometimes when sewing small pieces.
Iron the seam towards the cat ears and repeat the process for the other Ear.
Attach the Head piece to the ears section you just finished. Press the seam towards the cat head.
Sew the Side Background pieces, one one each side of the head/ear block. Press the seam towards the cat.
Attach the body of the cat to the head and you’re done!
I turned two of my cat blocks (and boy did I have a lot of blocks from all my pattern test runs) into a pincushion and a pouch.
I used the pin cushion tutorial by MessyJesse, and added a fishbone button mouth and button eyes.
For the pouch, I used Bee in my Bonnet’s Quilty Zip Pocket tutorial.
And now you too can add cat blocks to all of your patchwork projects! =D