Friday, April 27, 2012

Fast Flying Geese

This tutorial is my preferred method for making 4 flying geese blocks.

For this you will need one large square and four small squares of a different fabric. The large square makes the large triangle and the smaller squares make the two little triangles.
There is a graph for common finished block sizes here, but the math is pretty simple to determine the size of squares you need to cut.
Flying geese blocks are always rectangles - the length is twice the width. The large square is cut the finished length of block (the long side) plus 1+1/4" (just like the hourglass blocks), and the 4 small squares are cut the finished width of the block (the short side) plus 7/8" (just like the half square triangle blocks).

Lay two small squares as shown above on the large square. Draw a diagonal line.

Stitch scant 1/4" seams on both sides of the line. Cut on the line and press towards the small triangles.

Lay the other 2 small squares on the units and draw a diagonal line. Stitch scant 1/4" seams on both sides of the line.

Cut on the line and press the flying geese blocks open.

Trim the blocks to the finished size plus 1/2" for seam allowance. It is handy to use a square ruler and line the diagonal line up with the edge of the large triangle making sure there is 1/4" seam allowance above the point (click on the picture to make it bigger).

This method makes 4 blocks at a time.

"Plan C" from 2010

For variable star blocks the print fabric would be the small squares and the large square would be from the background fabric.

So many different, classic quilt blocks are made with combinations of half square triangles, hourglass blocks and flying geese blocks, and the quilt blocks can be made any size with the easy math for them. I am also finding the simple math for the blocks handy when making the Dear Jane blocks I am currently working on.

I am planning on posting a little quilt pattern in May using these tutorials. I will post one block a day, plus layout and quilting ideas at the end. I loved making the recent Temecula Quilt Co little quilts and thought I would do the same.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!


Ann at Prairie Primrose said...

I just started using this method a few months ago and I really like it! It's not so good for using up small scraps (my favourite type of quilt) but it's great for bigger pieces. I'm looking forward to your pattern in May!

Wendy said...

I have a different method I use because I like bonus hst leftovers. Looking forward to your May quilt. I'll play.

Doniene said...

What a great tutorial!! Thank you! I'll have to try it soon. Not sure I will play, but looking forward to one of your lovely projects!

Ruth said...

That's my favorite method of making flying geese too, however, I didn't know the measurements you gave. That is good to know. I had to "wing" it to make a sawtooth star to fit a certain fabric pattern and luckily, the points came out OK. I don't remember how I figured them out, but I didn't use this method because I didn't know how to get them the right size for an odd size star. (If that makes any sense at all!)

Impera Magna said...

Great tutorial... will have to give it a try!

Hopefully, work will slow down some in May and I'll have time to join in your block of the day!

Sheila said...

Thanks so much for this , I had no idea this could be done , will have to try to remember it when I need it .

Betty Lou said...

This is my favorite way to make flying geese, do you use Eleanor Burns ruler for the geese? Thank s for sharing. Look for war to your future blocks.

Cathy said...

Your tutorials are great and very timely...I'm just getting ready to make some Flying Geese for a quilt. I will try your way. Hugs

Nancy said...

I look forward to your little quilt pattern.

Sylke Feldhusen said...

I like this method, especially with non-directional fabrics :)

Looking forward to your quilt in may!

Terri said...

I've made them with templates... UGH! I've made them with squares for the background pieces... lots of waste. Now I've got a better way! Thanks for the tut! I too am anxiously waiting for the May patterns.

Carrie P. said...

I just used that same technique yesterday to make a block. Pretty quick and accurate too.

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