How to Make a 4-Square Patchwork Quilt Block Pattern

  • 01 of 03

    Making 4-Square Quilt Blocks

    A four square patchwork quilt block pattern
    Janet Wickell

    Four Square is an easy patchwork quilt block pattern that's designed with two each of two different units. Like units are arranged diagonally from each other in the quilt block, so the designs are alternated when blocks are sewn together side-by-side.

    Four Square is a four patch quilt block, and so are each of its smaller units.

    Like other blocks with this type of layout (Tile Puzzle is one example), Four Square can be called a linking block, because it has squares that create a flow that links the design diagonally. Similar blocks are also known as chains.

    Experiment with fabrics in the linking areas—bright colors, dark, and warm fabrics can make some areas pop into view more than mine, especially if they are surrounded by cool colors or neutrals. An understanding of color dominance can be helpful when it's time to choose fabrics.

    Four Square quilt blocks finish at 12" x 12" and can be assembled easily with strip piecing techniques.

    Cutting for One 12" Block

    Alter colors as desired.

    Fabrics for unit A: Top left and lower right.

    • Deep red: (1) 2" x 12-1/2" strip
    • Gold: (1) 2" x 12-1/2" strip and (1) 2" x 4-1/2" strip
    • Black: (1) 2" x 4-1/2" strip
    • White print with red: (4) 3-1/2" x 3-1/2" squares

    Fabrics for unit B: Top right and lower left.

    • Light green: (1) 3-1/2" x 8-1/2" strip and (2) 2" x 7-1/2" strips
    • Dark  green: (2) 2" x 8-1/2" strips
    • Black: (1) 3-1/2" x 7-1/2" strip

    Optional: Sew the Quilt Block a Patch at a Time

    • Cut all small squares 2" x 2"
    • Cut all large squares 3-1/2" x 3-1/2"
    • Cut the (light green) bars 2" x 3-1/2"

    Assemble individual pieces into segments as shown in the following steps, and then sew segments together to complete rows and the block.

    Continue to 2 of 3 below.
  • 02 of 03

    Make the Patchwork

    A four square quilt block assembly
    Janet Wickell

    Unit A

    Follow the illustrations from left to right in each row.

    1. Sew a 2" x 12-1/2" dark red strip lengthwise to a gold strip of the same size. Press to set the seam and then press the seam allowance towards the darker strip.
    2. Square up one end of the strip set. Starting from the squared up end, cut (6) 2" segments.
    3. Create a four patch unit by sewing two of the segments together, but flip one around so that like colors are on the diagonal. Press new seam allowance either direction or loosen a few stitches in the middle of the unit and 'fan' the seams in a circular motion (reduces bulk at the center).
    4. Make one more identical four patch unit from two of the remaining segments.
    5. Sew the 2" x 4-1/2" black strip lengthwise to the gold strip of the same size. Press seam allowance towards the darker strip.
    6. Square up one end of the strip set and cut (2) 2" segments.
    7. Make two more four patch units, but use a black/gold segment and a red/gold segment, placing gold squares diagonally from each other. Press as before.
    8. Arrange one of each four-patch type with two 3-1/2" red and white print squares to form two rows, bottom left.
    9. Sew components of each row together and press seam allowances towards the plain squares.
    10. Join the rows. Press new seam either direction. This portion of the quilt block should measure 6-1/2" x 6-1/2".
    11. Repeat with remaining patchwork to make one more 6-1/2" unit.
    Continue to 3 of 3 below.
  • 03 of 03

    Finish the Sewing

    Finish the four square quilt blocks
    Janet Wickell

    Unit B

    1. Sew a 2" x 8-1/2" dark green strip lengthwise to each side of the 3-1/2" x 8-1/2" light green strip. Press seam allowances towards the darker strips.
    2. Square up one end of the strip set and cut (4) 2" segments.
    3. Make a second strip set by sewing a 2" x 7-1/2" light green strip to each long side of the 3-1/2" x 7-1/2" black strip. Press seam allowances towards the darker strip.
    4. Square up. Cut (2) 3-1/2" segments.
    5. Position a 2" segment from step 2 above a 3-1/2" step 4 segment, and another step 2 segment beneath. Sew the rows together and press seam allowances towards the center. The unit should measure 6-1/2" x 6-1/2".
    6. Make a second identical unit.
    7. Create two rows, each with a Unit A and a Unit B as shown, bottom left. Join the components of each row and press seam allowance towards the B units.
    8. Join the rows and press. The quilt Four Square quilt block should measure 12-1/2" x 12-1/2".