Delectable Mountains Quilt Pattern

  • 01 of 04

    Make a Delectable Mountains Quilt

    Delectable Mountains Quilt Pattern
    Make a Bed Sized Delectable Mountains Quilt. Janet Wickell

    Use this Delectable Mountains quilt pattern to make a bed sized quilt that finishes at about 68" x 90". Need something larger or smaller? Increase or decrease the number of blocks, or sew a border around the quilt for an easy larger version.

    The quilt block finishes at 16" square, and each block is made up of four (8") patchwork units arranged in two rows of two each. Blocks are placed on point and measure about 22-1/2" from point-to-point.

    The quilt is made with 18 quilt...MORE blocks.

    Delectable Mountains is a name tagged onto several traditional (and similar) quilt designs.  This quilt was inspired by the vintage Delectable Mountains quilt on the last page of the pattern. The difference? Patchwork setting triangles rim the outer edges of the vintage quilt, while the version in this pattern is made using a single, large triangle in each of those slots.

    If you like the vintage version, subscribe to my newsletter and you'll receive a link to a pattern based on that layout as soon as it's published.

    You might also want to take a look at a different version of this design in my Delectable Mountains quilt block pattern. Small pinwheels emerge where the four units of each block meet.

    Many Delectable Mountains designs are two-color quilts that are sewn from a light and a dark fabric. The vintage version is a signature quilt made by combining white fabrics with a scrappy assortment of reds. Some of the signatures are still visible within the quilt's larger white triangles.

    • Choose any theme that suits you, or make a scrap quilt if you prefer. A scrappy assortment of dark fabrics would look wonderful combined with a consistent light fabric to help tie the look together.
    • Setting triangles are shown in a red that's a bit darker than the red used in quilt blocks (to add more contrast).

    Some of the following yardages won't be as helpful for scrap quilters, but instructions on the following pages explain exactly how many patches you need for each quilt block.

    Red (or Dark) Fabric(s)

    • 3 yards 

    Light Fabric(s)

    • 3 yards

    Setting and Corner Triangles

    • 2-1/4 yards (you'll have leftovers)


    • A panel that's about 78" x 90" or as required by the quilter if you are sending it out for quilting (can be configured in different ways, see How to Make Quilt Backing)


    • Same as backing


    • About 300 running inches of doublefold binding to sew on quilt with a 1/4" seam allowance; can use a wider seam allowance if a border is added (How to Make Quilt Binding Strips)
    Continue to 2 of 4 below.
  • 02 of 04

    Make Delectable Mountains Quilt Blocks

    Delectable Mountains Quilt Pattern
    Sew Delectable Mountains Quilt Blocks. Janet Wickell

    Delectable Mountains Quilt Block Cutting Chart

    Always begin by cutting only enough fabric to sew a test block or two, no matter whose quilt patterns you use.

    Half Square Triangle Units

    Delectable Mountains is assembled from two sizes of half square triangle units. I prefer to use a method that pairs contrasting squares, which are then sewn together with two seams along the diagonal (tutorial link below). Alter cutting instructions to sew the units with another method. Adjust yardages if necessary.

    • Sm...MOREall units finish at 2" x 2" (will measure 2-1/2" square after assembly)
    • Large units finish at 6" x 6" (will measure 6-1/2" square after assembly)

    When making small half square triangle units, I nearly always cut the squares oversize and trim back units after assembly, an extra step that improves accuracy.

    Red (or Dark) Fabric(s)

    • (252) 2-7/8" x 2-7/8" squares (cut a bit larger to trim back units after assembly)
    • Alternate for scrap quilters -- (14) of the small squares per block
    • (36) 6-7/8" x 6-7/8" squares
    • Alternate for scrap quilters -- (2) of the larger squares per block

    Light Fabric(s)

    • Same number of patches and sizes as red fabric

    Sew the Half Square Triangle Units

    Once you're sure the units are acceptable and have made a test block, begin chain piecing to speed up assembly. 

    1. Refer to my quick pieced half square triangle tutorial (unless using another technique).
    2. Following the instructions, pair a small light square with a red square of the same size. Sew two diagonal seams as explained. Place an iron on the pair to set the seams. Cut apart midway between the two seams and carefully press the two new units open. Each should measure 2-1/2" x 2-1/2". Trim dog ears (little triangles at seam ends) and trim back the units if you used oversize squares (last page of the tutorial).
    3. Repeat to join all small squares, creating 504 half square triangle units that measure 2-1/2" x 2-1/2".
    4. Use the same method to sew each 6-7/8" red square to a light square of the same size. When finished, you should have (72) 6-1/2" x 6-1/2" half square triangle units.

    Assemble the Quilt Blocks

    1. Top illustration, left. Arrange three small half square triangle units in a vertical column as shown to the left of the larger unit. Sew patchwork in a vertical row together and press seam allowances towards the darker units.
    2. Sew the vertical column to the larger unit. Press seam allowance towards the larger unit.
    3. Top illustration, center. Arrange four half square triangle units under the Step 2 patchwork as shown. Sew the units together and press seam allowances towards the patchwork on the left.
    4. Top illustration, right. Sew the horizontal row to the Step 2 unit. Press seam allowances away from the large triangle.
    5. Make three more Step 4 units and arrange into two rows, each with two units that measure 8-1/2" x 8-1/2", bottom left illustration.
    6. Press seam allowances in adjoining rows in opposite directions and then join the rows. Press. The quilt block should measure 16-1/2" x 16-1/2".
    7. Make a total of 18 quilt blocks.

    A Quick Note About Seam Allowances

    It's ideal if seam allowances in adjoining rows/patchwork are pressed in opposite directions to help you easily butt pieces together for a perfect match.

    That scenario is more difficult with many blocks, including Delectable Mountains. Later, when matching seams during quilt assembly, stick a straight pin through seams that should align, stabbing it through the central area of each seam as necessary. Remove pins as the needle approaches.

    If you like, wait to press the final seam that joins the two rows of units in a block. Press those allowances in opposite directions after you arrange blocks in the layout to create one more area that butts together nicely for assembly.

    Continue to 3 of 4 below.
  • 03 of 04

    Finish Sewing the Delectable Mountains Quilt

    Delectable Mountains Quilt Layout
    Delectable Mountains Quilt Layout. Janet Wickell

    Cut Corner and Setting Triangles

    1. Cut three dark red squares, each 23-7/8" x 23-7/8". Cut each square in half twice diagonally to create 10 setting triangles. Two aren't used. The fabric's straight grain runs parallel to the longest edge of setting triangles.
    2. Cut two dark red squares, each 12-1/4" x 12-1/4". Cut each square in half once diagonally to make four corner triangles for the quilt. The straight grains run along the short edges of corner triangles. You can use...MORE squares that are somewhat larger if you wish, and then square up the corners after the quilt top is assembled.

    Optional Cutting Method

    If you prefer, cut a paper square (rolls of brown paper will work) of the largest square and then divide it twice diagonally. Use one triangle as a template, aligning the fabric's straight grain to run parallel to the triangle's longest edge.

    Learn more about corner and setting triangles for quilts.

    Assemble the Quilt

    I've illustrated the quilt's rows horizontally because it sometimes helps new quilters visualize the layout. Take a look back at page 1 to see the quilt in its on-point orientation.

    1. Arrange quilt blocks into rows as shown.
    2. Place a large setting triangle at the ends of rows, orienting the angles as illustrated. The two middle rows each have one setting triangle -- ignore the small, corner triangles for now.
    3. Sew components of each row together. Press outer seam allowances towards the large triangles. Press (new) seam allowances between blocks in adjoining rows in opposite directions.
    4. Join the rows and press.
    5. Center and sew a corner triangle to each corner of the quilt. Press seam allowances towards the corner triangles.
    6. Square up the corners and the sides of the quilt. Work carefully, leaving a 1/4" seam allowance along all sides. Some quilters hold off on squaring up until after quilting. Try it both ways to see which you prefer.
    7. Mark the top for quilting if necessary. Sandwich with batting and backing and baste.
    8. Quilt the quilt. Square up the edges (again) if necessary.
    9. Use a 1/4" seam allowance to sew easy mitered binding around the edges of the quilt.
    Continue to 4 of 4 below.
  • 04 of 04

    Vintage Delectable Mountains Quilt

    Delectable Mountains Quilt
    Vintage Delectable Mountains Quilt. Public Domain Image Courtesy of LACMA

    This vintage Delectable Mountains quilt was sewn in about 1842. It's a signature (or friendship) quilt, and many of the signatures are still visible in some of the white portions of quilt blocks.