Thursday, September 27, 2012

shoo fly block {a tutorial}

Last night I finished my Shoo fly quilt top. It was a serious race against time as I knew I had to finish this quilt top since I still need to baste and quilt it, obviously, and I want it to be ready by Sunday to be given as a gift to one special 11 year old girl.

Fortunately, these blocks are pretty big (12.5" square) and once I found a system of working in batches, they came together quite painlessly.

I love how pretty, bright, and modern looking this block is. Oh, and chunky! I love chunky blocks. So, I thought some of you might appreciate a tutorial on how to make this fun 12.5" block. Ready? here we go!

Choose two contrasting fabrics for your block. I chose red and white polka dot fabric for the main part of the block and white solid fabric for the background.

From the main fabric, cut out 2- 5" squares, and 4 - 4.5" squares.
From the background fabric cut out 2 - 5" squares and 1- 4.5" square.

 Take your 2 - 5" white squares and draw a line dividing each square into 2 equal triangles. 

Place one 5" white square on top of one 5" print fabric (right sides together), pin in place, and sew a 1/4" along both sides of the line you drew in the previous step.

 Do the same with the second set of 5" squares, once done take your block to your cutting mat and cut along the drawn line. Now you have 4 HSTs.
 Press your HSTs open and trim to 4.5" squares. 

Now arrange your HSTs, as well as squares you cut out at the beginning, into a shoo fly block.

First, sew the rows of 3 block together, press.
I like to press my seams the way shown in the picture as this makes sewing rows together a lot easier as there are no bulky seams to go through.

 Now sew the rows together and press the seams, at this point I press my seams open.

Trim, if needed, and you have one lovely 12.5" Shoo fly block, all finished. Wasn't that easy? 

I made 20 of these colorful blocks, so my quilt top measures 48" x 60". A perfect size for a child's quilt, if you ask me.

Any questions, feel free to ask.

Happy sewing, everyone! Thanks for stopping by. Svetlana

Linking up to Finish it up Friday over at Crazy Mom Quilts.


  1. Oh wow, well done getting that top done so quickly! Good luck with the rest of it :o)

  2. ditto to what katy said! great quilt and great that it is so fast!

  3. The quilt is so colorful and bright and pretty! It reminds me of lifesavers. I'm sure she will love it.

  4. Great quilt and tutorial! I love all the bright colors.

  5. I love this, Svetlana! I've marked this to use for one of my upcoming quilts. Thanks so much for sharing!

  6. I love your quilt and thanks for the's my turn as quilter in our circle of do.Good Stitches and may use this if you don't mind!

  7. Thanks so much for sharing your tutorial! The quilt looks fabulous.

  8. Thanks for sharing the tutorial! I have some fat quarters I need to bust up - this would be perfect.

  9. Lovely, happy quilt. Thanks for the tutorial. Might make it with plaids and red background.

  10. Super cute! Love all of those bright colors together with the white. Sure to be loved by the birthday girl as well!

  11. Looks so great!!! I just love the colors!

  12. Great colours in your quilt top. Good luck getting the quilting done.

  13. This is beautiful, I love the colors, thanks for the tutorial !

  14. Very pretty! So bright and cheery. She will love it!

  15. This is a great, bold block, thanks for the tutorial! And good luck in the race to get it finished for Sunday!!

  16. Its a gorgeous quilt top, thanks for the tute.

  17. What a fun, happy quilt - I'm sure the little girl will love it!

  18. It's beautiful! Love the bright colors with the white!

    Thanks for linking to finish it up Friday!

  19. I just finished cutting my fabrics for a quilt based on your tutorial. I chose a palette of red, white, and blue, which I'm not sure will "shine" quite like yours does.

  20. Love this block and your fabric choices. Thank you.


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