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Shoo Fly Quilt Block Pattern

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About the Shoo Fly Quilt Block Pattern
Shoo Fly Quilt Block Pattern

Shoo Fly Quilt Block

Janet Wickell

Make a Batch of Shoo Fly Quilt Blocks

The traditional Shoo Fly quilt block is a perfect pattern to use when you’re looking for a patchwork design that’s simple to assemble. Its corners are made from half square triangle units, but we’ll quick piece them to avoid exposing and handling the fabric's stretchy bias that runs along each triangle's long edge.

To make my block, I combined a grassy-like green background with a pictorial print that depicts fruits and vegetables. I fussy-cut the center square to position the pictorial just where I wanted it. A window template can help you preview the image that will be visible after seams are sewn, but it's easy to preview fabrics with your rotary ruler, too, just visualize the square minus 1/4" around its edges.

Vary the Fabrics

Shoo Fly makes a wonderful scrap quilt, but if you don't go scrappy, consider changing the background fabric of blocks that will be sewn side-by-side. Otherwise, you'll end up with like-fabrics meeting like-fabrics along straight edges and at corners -- mixing it up a bit gives the quilt a bit more visual movement as patches flow across the quilt top.

You can mix it up even more by sewing alternate blocks between the Shoo Fly blocks -- to keep it simple, try a Snowball quilt block.

If you're a beginning quilter, be sure to practice your quarter-inch seam allowance skills before you sew a quilt block.

You'll find cutting instructions for three different Shoo Fly sizes, a 12-inch square block, a 6-inch block (perfect for baby quilts) and a 3-inch miniature quilt block.

Cutting Chart for one 12-inch Shoo Fly Quilt Block

Pictorial Print (Illustrated as Dark Green)

  • (1) 4-1/2” x 4-1/2” fussy-cut square
  • (2) 4-7/8” x 4-7/8” squares

Light Green Print

  • (4) 4-1/2” x 4-1/2” square
  • (2) 4-7/8” x 4-7/8” squares

Cutting Chart for one 6-inch Shoo Fly Quilt Block

Pictorial Print (Illustrated as Dark Green)

  • (1) 2-1/2” x 2-1/2” fussy-cut square
  • (2) 2-7/8” x 2-7/8” squares

Light Green Print

  • (4) 2-1/2” x 2-1/2” square
  • (2) 2-7/8” x 2-7/8” squares

Cutting Chart for one 3-inch Shoo Fly Quilt Block

Read the half square triangle unit instructions before cutting fabrics for the miniature block. You might decide to enhance accuracy by cutting squares for those units a bit larger than necessary, and then trimming the units back after assembly.

Pictorial Print (Illustrated as Dark Green)

  • (1) 1-1/2” x 1-1/2” square
  • (2) 1-7/8” x 1-7/8” squares

Light Green Print

  • (4) 1-1/2” x 1-1/2” square
  • (2) 1-7/8” x 1-7/8” squares

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