Typecast of Characters: A is for Aurifil

We’re pleased to introduce you to Typecast, a brand new EPP pattern by Aurifil Artisan Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill. We’ve been counting down the days to this launch and are so excited it’s finally here! We are kicking things off… representing the Letter A, throwing a 7 week Blog Tour into action. 

The pattern is a tribute to Sheri’s love of typography. Having earned a degree in graphic design, Sheri studied typography in depth in her undergraduate years. She gained a deep appreciation for typeface design by drawing characters by hand, eventually designing her own typefaces.

Now, she is excited to offer typeface blocks that all quilters can use to express themselves. With all 26 letters represented, we are truly given the freedom to craft our own messages and make our own statements. Check out more via Sheri’s blog at Whole Circle Studio

Sheri partnered with industry EPP aficionados, Paper Pieces to bring the pattern to life. It can be purchased as a full pack, including all 26 letters, via Sheri’s site. Or, if individual letters are preferred, customers can also find a slew of options at the Paper Pieces website. 

Each block measures approximately 6” x 9”. Just getting started with this whole EPP thing? There is a fabulous pattern guide available which contains detailed instructions, tips and diagrams to walk quilters at all skill levels through the variety of EPP straight line and curved piecing skills they will use while making Typecast blocks. Letter assembly diagrams are included showing how the paper pieces for all 26 letters are arranged and sewn together. The pattern guide also shows how to use the optional acrylic piece set for fussy-cutting and precise seam allowances.

To celebrate this release, Sheri coordinated a grand event, tapping quilters to make and represent one letter each. Our very own Kate Brennan, who handles Sales & Customer service like an absolute pro, stepped up to the challenge. She is a lover of EPP and we’re thrilled to showcase her work and her words here today! Thank you, Kate!

I’ll be honest, I was a little intimidated when I saw the list of AMAZING and TALENTED folks who are participating in this project! I am so excited to start this EPP party on behalf of Aurifil with the Letter A — as if I needed more proof that I have the best job ever!

I loved working with the Typecast pattern. It is so flexible and I already have several ideas running through my head for future projects! I love how Sheri created the whole alphabet with just a few interchangeable pieces, it opens up so many possibilities. The letters come as individual blocks so it would be easy (and cute) to use only the outside pieces (the negative) of the letter as opposed to just the letter itself as I did in my mini quilt.

For the mini background, I used my favorite fabric from fellow Chicagoan, Sarah Lawson! It is a map of the Chicago CTA that was released as part of her Jungle Ave collection. I loved it so much, I bought the bolt at my LQS (Second City Quilts) and it only gets used for very special projects! I used scraps of Libs Elliot’s fabrics (and others that I found in my bin) for the skyline, Kona solids to highlight the colors found in Sarah’s map, and of course Aurifil blue (a.k.a. Kona Alegria) for the letter A!

I just had to take my mini on a tour of Chicago for the photoshoot! “A for Aurifil” took a tour around the neighborhood called The Loop in the center of the city. We are fortunate to have the home offices of Aurifil USA in the center of the best city in the world (in my humble opinion) and I love to take advantage of what my city has to offer! If you look closely, you can just make out the Thompson Center building, the Orange Line elevated train, the Cadillac Theater, and Michigan Avenue in the background. In the quilt, you can see the Sears Tower and the Smurfitt-Stone building (now known as the Willis Tower and Crain Communications building).

English Paper Piecing has become one of my favorite ways to stitch. I LOVE the portability! I always have a little something to work on in my bag… perfect for waiting rooms, car trips, evenings by the fire. I also really like the possibilities for complex and tricky shapes. Some things are just so much easier to EPP than any other method!

Of course I have my favorite threads for EPP. I use 50 weight to baste my fabric to the shape. I know many people glue baste but that method does not seem to work for me as I am usually on a train or in a car while basting.

I use Aurifil 80 weight to stitch my pieces together. I have a few go-to colors that work for most projects:

  • 2600 is cool and light
  • 6725 is warm and light
  • 1246 is cool and dark
  • and 2375, 5022, or 5011 are warm and dark.

These colors will accommodate most fabrics and blend in beautifully. I also use these colors to applique any larger pieces to a background (as in the case of this mini). For this project, I used the 2600 Dove Grey.

With all of the EPP-ing I’ve been doing, I’ve learned a few things along the way. My biggest tip would be… Practice, practice, practice! The first 1,000 hexies were hard, but just like anything – the more you do it, the easier it becomes. I can’t believe how easy I find basting and stitching the pieces now as compared to when I first started my hexie quilt (still a WIP but with over 2,500 hexies planned…to be expected!)

Happy Stitching!!


Wednesday, March 27: Tour Introduction by Whole Circle Studio
Monday, April 1 — A: Kate Brennan of Aurifil
Tuesday, April 2 — B: Mathew Bourdreaux of Mister Domestic
Wednesday, April 3 — C: Tara Curtis of Wefty Needle
Thursday, April 4— D: Leah Day of Free Motion Quilting Project
Friday, April 5 — Week 1 Wrap Up featuring A-D and GIVEAWAY at Whole Circle Studio
Monday, April 8 — E: Jess Finn of Paper Pieces
Tuesday, April 9 — F: Sylvia Schaefer of Flying Parrot Quilts
Wednesday, April 10 — G: Giuseppe Ribaudo of Giucy Giuce
Thursday, April 11— H: Hilary Jordan of By Hilary Jordan
Friday, April 12 — Week 2 Wrap Up featuring E-H and GIVEAWAY at Whole Circle Studio
Monday, April 15 — I: Kim Soper of Leland Ave Studios
Tuesday, April 16 — J: Yvonne Fuchs of Quilting Jetgirl
Wednesday, April 17 — K: Karen O’Connor of Lady K Quilts
Thursday, April 18 — L: Kristy Daum of St. Louis Folk Victorian
Friday, April 19 — Week 3 Wrap Up featuring I-L and GIVEAWAY at Whole Circle Studio
Monday, April 22 — M: Molli Sparkles of Molli Sparkles
Tuesday, April 23 — N: Nicole Daksiewicz of Modern Handcraft
Wednesday, April 24 — O: Scott Hansen of Blue Nickel Studios
Thursday, April 25 — P: Pat Sloan of Pat Sloan
Friday, April 26 — Week 4 Wrap Up featuring M-P and GIVEAWAY at Whole Circle Studio
Monday, April 29 — Q: Joanna Marsh of Kustom Kwilts
Monday, April 29 — Q: Lindsay Széchényi of Lindsay Széchényi (and Patchwork Threads)
Tuesday, April 30 — R: Andrea Tsang Jackson of 3rd Story Workshop
Wednesday, May 1 — S: Sarah Thomas of Sariditty
Thursday, May 2 — T: Rachel Rossi of Rachel Rossi
Friday, May 3— Week 4 Wrap Up featuring Q-T and GIVEAWAY at Whole Circle Studio
Monday, May 6 — U: Kitty Wilkin of Night Quilter
Tuesday, May 7 — V: Jenn McMillan of Fabric, Ink
Wednesday, May 8 — W: Jenny Meeker of Bobbin Roulette Studio
Thursday, May 9 — X: Stephanie Kendron of Modern Sewciety
Friday, May 10 — Week 5 Wrap Up featuring U-X and GIVEAWAY at Whole Circle Studio
Monday, May 13 — Y: Debby Brown of Debby Brown Quilts
Tuesday, May 14 — Z: Nisha Bouri and Kim Martucci of Brimfield Awakening
Wednesday, May 15 — Week 6 Wrap Up featuring Y-Z, Tour closeout and GIVEAWAY at Whole Circle Studio


  1. What a thorough introduction to a great, new-to-me idea! Thanks so much. And–wow!–your “A” mini is Absolutely Amazing!

  2. Kate, I can’t wait to see more! Beautiful tribute to Aurifil, and Chicago. Love that Kona blue and your perfect thread compliment. How cool that you’ve hung onto some Jungle Ave fabrics…I’m saving one fat quarter too. Hmmm, maybe as we go down the alphabet I’ll use a portion:)

    1. I have been using it sparingly…only for special projects where it really can shine!!!! This seemed like a perfect time to use it – Please let me know if you have any questions kate@aurifilusa.com

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