01 of 03
How to Make Square and a Half Quilt Blocks
It's Easy to Customize the Square and a Half Quilt Block Pattern
Use my Square and a Half quilt block pattern to sew this traditional patchwork quilt block. My example blocks are in fabrics that resemble Redwork but don't hesitate to customize the quilt block to suit any theme.
The two blocks above are actually made from identical components. The corners of the block on the right are flipped around to create a different appearance.
- If the version on the left is repeated, the corners will form a small square in a square quilt block where they meet.
- Repeating the version on the right creates a different look.
- The results vary when you alter fabrics from block to block -- or make a scrap quilt.
Block Construction Options
There are multiple ways to assemble the Square and a Half quilt block. We'll use a combination of quick piecing techniques.
- Quick-pieced quarter square triangle units.
- Quick-pieced half square triangle units.
- A quick-pieced flying geese technique.
Cutting for One Quilt Block
Dark Red Fabric (for half-square triangle units in corners)
- (2) 2-7/8" x 2-78" squares
Red with White Print (for inner star and outer geese-like patchwork)
- (2) 3-1/4" x 3-1/4" squares
- (1) 2-1/2" x 2-1/2" square
- (4) 2-1/2" x 6-1/2" rectangles
White with Red Printed Fabric #1 (for inner star area of the quilt block.)
- (2) 3-1/4" x 3-1/4" squares
- (4) 2-1/2" x 2-1/2" squares
White with Red Print #2 (for outer areas of the quilt block)
- (2) 2-7/8" x 2-7/8" squares
- (8) 2-1/2" x 2-1/2" squares
Options for Half Square Triangle Units
Alter cutting to use another construction method (except this) to make HST units that finish at 2" x 2" (are 2-1/2" x 2-1/2" before sewing to neighbors). I sew with oversized pieces of fabric and then trim units back to their exact size after assembly.Continue to 2 of 3 below.
02 of 03
Sew Patchwork for the Square and a Half Quilt Block
Make Half Square Triangle Units (HST) for Outer Corners
- Figure 1. Draw a line from one corner to the opposite corner of each 2-7/8 light (#2) square. Pair the square with a dark red square of the same size and use my Half Square Triangle Tutorial to turn the pair into two HST units that measure 2-1/2" x 2-1/2".
- Repeat to make two more HST units.
- If you started with oversized squares, see the last page of the tutorial for trim-back instructions.
Make Quarter Square Triangle Units (QST) for Inner Star
- Figures 2 and 3. Begin by making HST 'parent' units by pairing each 3-1/4" light (#1) square with a lighter red square of the same size. Use the technique linked above.
- Each of the four resulting HST units should measure 2-7/8" square.
- Use the same method to pair two of the HST units, contrasting colors facing each other for assembly. Sew and slice apart as described in my Quarter Square Triangle Unit Tutorial.
- Repeat with remaining HST units.
- You should have four QST units that measure 2-1/2" x 2-1/2".
Sew the Geese-Like Units for Outer Rows
- Draw a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner of each white with red print #2 square (you have eight).
- Figures 4 through 7. Place a square right side down at the end of a 2-1/2" x 6-1/2" red rectangle, all edges aligned and with the drawn line as shown.
- Sew a seam directly on the line.
- Press to set the seam and then slice through both layers about 1/4" from the seam line.
- Press the light fabric right side up to create a triangle.
- Repeat on the opposite side, aligning the angle to produce the triangle shown.
- Make three more of the units.
Remember to take advantage of chain piecing techniques once you understand each step.Continue to 3 of 3 below.
03 of 03
Assemble the Square and a Half Quilt Block
Finish Sewing the Quilt Block
Before you sew, consider arranging all components on a quilt design wall or another flat surface. Twist the outer geese-like units and the outer HST units around to see if you like that type of layout better than the layout shown.
It's always good to press to set seams before pressing seam allowances to one side.
- Figure 8. Grab the four quarter square triangle units, the four 2-1/2" squares reserved for the star, and the 2-1/2" red square reserved for the star center.
- Arrange the pieces into three rows as shown. Sew the components of each row together and press seam allowances towards the plain squares.
- Join the rows, pinning patchwork to keep the fabrics from shifting. Press seams any direction. The block's center star should measure 6-1/2" x 6-1/2".
- Figure 9. Sew a rectangular geese-like unit to opposite sides of the star center. Press seam allowances away from the center.
- Figure 10. Sew a dark red/light half square triangle to each end of the two remaining geese-like units, taking care to arrange all angles as shown.
- Sew one unit above the partial block and one below, matching seam intersections carefully.
- Press the quilt block. The block should measure 10-1/2" x 10-1/2".