Pinwheel Quilt Block

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Pinwheel Quilt Block

The Pinwheel quilt block contains half-square triangles. In this lesson, you'll learn to make them quickly and easily. I'm also going to show you how to make two units at the same time. Talk about speed and accuracy! I admire the person who came up with this idea.

Half-Square Triangle
Look at the half-square triangle unit on the right. Two triangles form the square. That's why we call them half-square triangles. Simple enough, ha? Now, let's make a few of these units for our block.

What You Need

Seam allowance included in measurement of the cut fabric.

Step 1

Flip light strip onto dark strip. Right sides together. Edges even. Light strip stays on top. Place strips on cutting mat. Cut in half.

Cut Strips in Half

You now have two 4" squares.

Step 2

Get your ruler and fabric pen. Draw a diagonal line (corner to corner) on each square.

Draw Diagonal Lines

Step 3

Draw a ¼" seam allowance on each side of the line. Do this on both squares. These are your sewing lines. You'll cut on the center line later.

Draw 1/4

Step 4

Stitch on outer lines. Press Pinwheel squares flat.

Stitch on Outer Lines

Step 5

Place sewn squares on rotary mat, with light squares on top. Cut in half on center lines.

Cut on Center Lines

Step 6

Place units on pressing pad, with dark sides on top. Press seams toward dark fabric.

Press Seams Toward Dark Fabric

You now have four 3 ½" x 3 ½" half-square triangles. Good job!

Step 7

Align your ruler's edge with raw edge of fabric. Trim off fabric tails. Press Seams Toward Dark Fabric

Step 8

Arrange the half square triangle units like this:

Arrange Units

Step 9

Wrong Sides of Fabric

Flip A onto B. Right sides together. Edges even. Stitch using a scant ¼" seam allowance. Press seam toward A.

Flip A onto B

Step 10

Flip C onto D. Right Sides together. Edges even. Stitch. Press seam toward D.

Flip C onto B

Step 11

Your two units should measure 3 ½" x 6 ½".

Units Measure 3 ½

Step 12

Flip Row 1 onto Row 2. Right sides together. Match and pin the two center seams. Stitch. Press seam up.

Stitch Row 1 to Row 2

Step 13

Pinwheel Quilt Block

Pinwheel quilt block should measure 6 ½" x 6 ½".

The Pinwheel block is easy to make despite its challenging appearance. Take a break, and come back for the next lesson.

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NEXT: Fair and Square Block


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