An Introduction to Rob Peter to Pay Paul Quilts

Jul 8, 2017 1:00:00 PM / by AccuQuilt

Rob Peter to Pay Paul: Four Bites Per Project

Where did the quilt block name Rob Peter to Pay Paul come from? You’ve probably heard the phrase ‘Rob Peter to Pay Paul’. Many of you have probably “Robbed Peter to Pay Paul” by taking money from your savings account to cover a debt in your checking account or pouring soda from one glass to another to make the amounts even to appease your children.

It is thought that the original phrase came from King Edward VI who ordered St. Peter's Church in Westminster to sell some of its land in order to pay for the repair of St. Paul's in London.

The quilt block ‘Rob Peter to Pay Paul’ is a classic featuring curved seams. Typically the Rob Peter to Pay Paul block is considered a quilt block for experienced quilters, but this has changed with the AccuQuilt GO!® Fabric Cutter.



Years ago, quilters would have to painstakingly cut out and pin each piece often losing accuracy and making the completion of a successful block challenging. The time to do this cutting can be very overwhelming. Fortunately, quilters with an AccuQuilt GO!® Fabric Cutter no longer have to worry about the accuracy of the cuts or the extensive time spent cutting.

The traditional Rob Peter to Pay Paul quilt has typically been a two-color quilt. A blue and white version is shown here. Hand quilters often show their talents in the centers of the blocks by stitching intricate designs.

Notice that there are two different blocks that alternate featuring a positive and negative version of the same block.


rob peter to pay paul

The block appears to have a chunk “bitten” out of it. It appears as though bites were taken from one of the squares and added to another square.

The AccuQuilt Rob Peter to Pay Paul design is a two-die set. The ‘Peter’ portion of the die set is the large part with the bites taken out then there is the ‘Paul’ part that is the bite.

With the AccuQuilt GO! Fabric Cutter, a quilter can cut up to six layers of fabric in one pass. This makes it so much easier than the traditional method of pinning and scissor cutting from times past.


Helpful Tips

If you are nervous about sewing the curves, the matching notches on the AccuQuilt dies make it extremely easy. There are plenty of great resources out there to help you. Ebony Love from Quilt Possible has made two very helpful videos. The first video provides you with the tips you need. The second video explains how to position the pieces, match the notches, and press the block for a perfect design.

Julie Herman from JayBird Quilts has a video that highlights a special curved piecing foot that is available for your sewing machine. In this video, she demonstrates this foot to sew together a Drunkard’s Path block although it can be used for any curved seam.

It you are still hesitant to make a big quilt, start out with a small project. Create four blocks, sew them together, and make a large pillow. Doing a small project first is always a great confidence builder. Once you have mastered a pillow then you are ready to move on to make a large project.

This quilt block is not just for the traditional quilter anymore. The Rob Peter to Pay Paul die will have you robbing your scrap bins and fat quarter stash looking for the perfect fabric to make a quilt your way. The AccuQuilt GO! will help you take that classic quilt off your wish list and turn it into reality.

Example of Project for Rob Peter to Pay Paul Quilt Project



This unique pillow pattern puts a new spin on the Rob Peter to Pay Paul Quilt Block. Make it in your own favorite colors and see how quickly you can make it using the AccuQuilt GO! Rob Peter to Pay Paul Die. 

By Jo Kramer, Jo’s Country Junction


Jo Kramer


Jo Kramer is a mom to five and wife to a busy farmer. She stays busy supporting teachers with her early childhood printables website,, gardening, raising hens and volunteering. Jo squeezes in quilting time to relieve stress from her busy life and loves her AccuQuilt GO! for the efficiency it offers. You can find a wealth of quilting tips and tutorials, as well as snippets from her Iowa farm life at In addition, Jo Kramer has designed GO! Friendly Patterns available on If you were inspired by Jo’s Rob Peter to Pay Paul article, you’ll love Jo’s patterns that include holiday-themed projects utilizing GO! dies to put together the perfect quilting project!



Topics: Education, GO! Product Tutorials


Written by AccuQuilt


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