18 Quilt Designs Made From Simple Shapes

Striped Scallops Quilt Pattern
3rd Story Workshop

When you work with squares, rectangles, and half-square triangle piecing, you can make a vast quantity of quilts! These basic shapes make up the building blocks of many classic and modern quilt designs, and they're easy to cut and sew.

Some of the patterns in this list use pre-cuts, which makes it even easier to piece your quilt top. Others will help you use those fat quarters in your stash a few form illusions that make you question just how that was done with only the simplest of pieces.

  • 01 of 18

    Sew a Charming Modern Baby Quilt

    Simple Charm Pack Baby Quilt Pattern
    Coral and Co.

    With a charm pack of fabric squares, you can piece together this modern baby quilt. It shows off the prints while surrounding them in white, but you could choose another complementary solid. Or cut your own squares from a solid fabric and accent them with a print in place of the white!

    Simple Charm Pack Baby Quilt from Coral and Co.

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  • 02 of 18

    Make a Positively Adorable Quilt in Any Size

    Plus Quilt Pattern
    For the Love of George

    Plus quilts come in different styles and designs, and this basic version is a great place to start. The free pattern download from For the Love of George shows several ways to arrange the motif, plus an FQ cutting guide and two quilt sizes. 

    Plus Quilt Pattern from For the Love of George

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  • 03 of 18

    Quilt a Blanket That's Perfectly Peachy

    Peaches and Cream Quilt Pattern
    Simple Simon and Co.

    Varying sizes of rectangles join into squares and then form this square quilt. It's a fun way to show off as many as 25 different fabrics without looking too overwhelming. You can find the free pattern on the Simple Simon and Co. website or download a copy to save for just $4.

    Peaches and Cream Quilt Tutorial from Simple Simon and Co. 

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  • 04 of 18

    Sew a Quilt for Summer Days in the Sun

    Summer Glow Quilt Pattern
    Patchwork and Poodles

    Playing off the traditional sawtooth stars quilt pattern, this free design features patchwork stars with smaller squares between them. To piece this quilt, you only need to cut squares and rectangles. With a bit of sewing and trimming, they become the triangles you see!

    Summer Glow Free Quilt Pattern from Patchwork and Poodles

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  • 05 of 18

    Transform Fat Quarters Into a Fast and Fun Quilt

    Fat Quarter Fancy Quilt Pattern
    Sew Can She

    Your stack of fat quarters can quickly turn into this bold quilt! Once again starting with squares, the blocks soon become elongated hexagons set on a diagonal. Working with the number of blocks shown in the free pattern, you'll end up with a small lap quilt, but you could easily add more to make a larger quilt.

    Fat Quarter Fancy Quilt Pattern from Sew Can She

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  • 06 of 18

    Bust Your Stash as You Make a Quilt

    Jelly Strip Stash Buster Quilt Tutorial
    Cluck Cluck Sew

    Alison from Cluck Cluck Sew shows you how to use jelly rolls (pre-cut 2-1/2" strips) to make a colorful quilt based on a pattern by Ashely of Film in the Fridge. By sewing the strips and then cutting them down, you can assemble this with less cutting!

    Jelly Strip Stash Buster Quilt from Cluck Cluck Sew

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  • 07 of 18

    Sew Some Quilted Sunshine

    Southwest Sunshine Quilt Pattern
    Quilty Love

    This geometric quilt has some southwest inspiration with small diamonds and colors radiating out like rays of sunshine. The downloadable pattern includes six sizes so you can make this beauty in any size you need.

    Southwest Sunshine PDF Quilt Pattern, $12, Quilty Love

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  • 08 of 18

    Celebrate the Night Sky With a Quilt

    Starry Skies Quilt Pattern
    Beverly McCullough

    Beverly from Flamingo Toes shares this free Starry Skies pattern that shows off her fabric line, Azure Skies. The stars are surrounded by a field of patchwork squares, with a set of squares in the middle. 

    Starry Skies Free Quilt Pattern from Flamingo Toes

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  • 09 of 18

    Grow and Sew a Quilted Flower Garden

    Flower Garden Quilt Pattern
    Ellis and Higgs

    At first glance, you might not realize that these flowers use the same geometric shapes as the rest of these quilts. But they do! Nadra from Ellis and Higgs is known for her adorable quilt blocks that make designs with building block pieces. In her shop, you'll find patterns for all seasons and then some!

    Flower Garden PDF Quilt Pattern, $12, Ellis and Higgs

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  • 10 of 18

    Weave a Plaid Quilt

    Retro Plaid Quilt Pattern
    Suzy Quilts

    This bold quilt patter uses a few triangles, which involves sewing on bias edges. That makes this a little more challenging than others, but it's worth it to get this great design. Suzy Quilts calls this a Retro Plaid quilt, but with the zoomed in look, it's oh so modern!

    Retro Plaid Quilt Pattern from Suzy Quilts

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  • 11 of 18

    Make a Diagonal Quilt With HSTs

    Easy Half Square Triangles Baby Quilt Pattern
    Sweet Red Poppy

    Half-Square Triangles are one of the most versatile mini-blocks in quilting. In this tutorial, you'll see how you can even use them to make scrappy stripes on diagonal lines. 

    Easy Half-Square Triangle Baby Quilt from Sweet Red Poppy

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  • 12 of 18

    Sew a Rainbow of Pixels

    Pixelated Quilt Pattern
    Love Patchwork and Quilting

    Originally published in Love Patchwork and Quilting, you can now download the complete pattern from designer Sedef Imer of Down Grapevine Lane. Strips and squares create a rainbow gradation of pixels that kids and color-loving adults will love.

    Pixelated Quilt Pattern, $9, Down Grapevine Lane

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  • 13 of 18

    Make a Mini Trip Around the World

    Trip Around the World Mini Quilt Tutorial
    Aqua Paisley Studio

    There is something magical about watching how a Trip Around the World Quilt comes together. This traditional quilt pattern is made up of small squares that all radiate from the center. It might look dizzying when you think about sewing all those pieces, but there's a secret to speed up the process and that's where the magic happens! Try this method with a mini quilt, then go for something bigger!

    Trip Around the World Mini Quilt from Aqua Paisley Studio

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  • 14 of 18

    Make Scallops With Rectangles

    Striped Scallops Quilt Pattern
    3rd Story Workshop

    Andrea Tsang Jackson uses clever piecing to transform rectangles into gently curved scallops. With three alternate layouts in the pattern, including one that resembles a twist, you'll want to add this to your pattern library right away.

    Striped Scallops Digital Pattern, $16, 3rd Story Workshop

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  • 15 of 18

    Quilt a Color Run With HSTs

    Rainbow Run Sampler Quilt Pattern
    Southern Fabric

    Half-square triangles show off again in this sampler of 12 quilt blocks, all in rainbow colors. Most of the blocks use HSTs that pair a bright print with a solid, which means you can make a lot of pieces at one time, or even use leftovers from other quilts, then sew them into blocks. 

    Rainbow Run Quilt Pattern from Southern Fabric

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  • 16 of 18

    Let it Snow and Sew a Quilt

    Snowflake Quilt Pattern
    Modern Handcraft

    Snowy days and cozy quilts are made for each other, and this quilt pattern brings both of those things together! Made with squares and half-square triangles, it features a giant snowflake on a background of either patchwork, large stripes, or a single color. 

    Be sure to also check out Nicole's handy method for making HSTs and pinwheels!

    Snowflake Quilt Pattern, $12, Modern Handcraft

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  • 17 of 18

    Make a Quilt That's So Fletch

    Fletcher Chevron Quilt Pattern
    Shiny Happy World

    Wendi Gratz of Shiny Happy World is great at explaining quilt patterns for beginners. In this free pattern, she shows you exactly how to sew the rectangles and squares that form these chevrons. Not only that, but she also has fun ideas for piecing the quilt backing together to make a fun surprise on the reverse of the quilt!

    Fletcher Quilt Pattern from Shiny Happy World

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  • 18 of 18

    Quilt Some Patchwork With a Plus Side

    Nine Patch Plus Quilt Pattern
    Center Street Quilts

    Nine patch quilts are a classic, but Kristina of Center Street Quilts decided to "plus it up" by grouping the patchwork squares into plus signs. When set on a contrasting background, they really shine, even with a range of colors and fabrics in each square. 

    Nine Patch Plus Quilt Pattern, $9, Center Street Quilts