Blocks | Quilting

How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

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Inside: How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

When looking at quilt blocks for this series I always like to see if I can find something unique or special about a block.

The Hourglass Quilt Block is one of those blocks that’s been around a while and was popular in the early 20th century. It goes by several different names: Big Dipper, Yankee Puzzle, Whirling Blade, Reverse X, Bow Ties, and (my personal favorite) Pork and Beans.

No matter how it got its name, I know you’re going to love how easy this quilt block is to make. And be sure to grab the FREE PDF assembly diagram below.

Learn How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

For this block I decided to make it a traditional 4-patch with four Hourglass blocks. This method offers you some variety because it can be dramatically different depending on your fabric choices.

Supplies

This block is very economical. I used some solid fat quarters that were in my stash. As long as you choose fabrics that have a contrast, anything will work.

  • Solid Fabric #1 (Red)
  • Solid Fabric #2 (Turquoise)
  • White Fabric (Kona White #1387)
Learn How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

Basic Sewing Supplies Needed


Hourglass – Cutting and Marking

Iron your fabrics nice and flat to remove any wrinkles. Use the cutting measurements below to get your pieces cut out and in order.

  • Qty (1) 7.25″x 7.25″ Red (A)
  • Qty (1) 7.25″ x 7.25″ Turquoise (B)
  • Qty (2) 7.25″ x 7.25″ White (C)
Learn How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

Make Half Square Triangles (HST) 2-at-a-Time

Follow the diagram below to make the red/white HSTs and the teal/white HSTs.

  1. Place a light and a dark fabric square right sides together.
  2. Use a pencil or water soluble marker, draw a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner.
  3. On both sides of the diagonal line, stitch a scant 1/4″ seam. See How to Sew the Perfect Quilting Seam Allowance for more details.
  4. Using a quilter’s ruler and rotary cutter, cut along the pencil line.
  5. Press seams to one side.
Learn How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

Make Quarter Square Triangles (QST) 2-at-a-Time

  1. Arrange your HST squares in correct layout (pictured below). Place opposite sides on top of each other (light fabric on dark fabric). Be sure the seams line up. Secure with a pin. Hint: PLACEMENT MATTERS! Before sewing, fold back the fabric on one of the stitching lines. You should see an hourglass shape.
  2. Use a pencil or water soluble marker, draw a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner, bisecting the seam.
  3. On both sides of the diagonal line, stitch a scant 1/4″ seam.
  4. Using a quilter’s ruler and rotary cutter, cut along the pencil line.
  5. Press each completed QST, trim away dog ears, and square individual blocks to 6.5″ (if necessary).
Learn How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

Hourglass Block – Assembly

  1. Arrange your individual Hourglass squares in correct layout (pictured below).
  2. Using a quarter inch seam allowance, sew together the top row (4-patch style). Press seams in same direction. Repeat for the bottom row. Alternate pressing direction on each row.
  3. Join both rows using a quarter inch seam allowance. Take time to nest your seams.
  4. Press your completed block and trim down block to 12.5″ square (if necessary).
Learn How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

Get a FREE Block Assembly Diagram

The block assembly diagrams are available in a FREE downloadable PDF that includes assembly diagrams for the Hourglass Quilt Block with HST’s 2-at-a-Time and QSTs 2-at-a-Time.

Please follow the directions in the box below and the assembly diagram will be sent directly to your inbox. Note: Current Subscribers can re-enter their email but won’t be double subscribed.


Don’t you love this Hourglass Quilt Block. Because of its simplicity, the options for this easy quilt block are fun to imagine! In fact, I put together this simple quilt by simply enlarging the starting fabric squares to 16 3/4″.

Learn How to Make a Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

The Hourglass Quilt Block is a fun and easy quilt block with unlimited possibilities.

Happy Quilting!


Did you like this post? Check out a few of the other Quilt Blocks in this Series.

Click this link to see all of the Blocks of the Month

Learn How to Make the Perfect Hourglass Quilt Block

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