As quilters, there are a few basic blocks that, when we learn them, we know will be used in many different applications for the rest of our quilting lives.
The square in a square block is one of these blocks.
If you’re a new quilter and have no idea what I’m talking about, don’t worry because I will show you the most straightforward method to make a square in a square block.
We’ll also review 15 quilt patterns that utilize this fun and sometimes overlooked block.
- What Is a Square in a Square Quilt?
- How to Make a Square in A Square Quilt Block?
- 15 Square in a Square Quilt Block Patterns You’ll Want to Try
- 1. Raw Edge Square in a Square
- 2. Up Square Down Square
- 3. Wonky Square in a Square Block
- 4. Floating Stars
- 5. Buttonton Square
- 6. All Season Squares
- 7. Baby Blocks
- 8. Square Up
- 9. Fair and Square
- 10. Cary’s Quilt Pattern
- 11. Stars and Diamonds
- 12. Scenic Detour
- 13. Eternity
- 14. Desert Diamonds
- 15. Crystal and Gem
What Is a Square in a Square Quilt?
Just like the name suggests, this block is a simple design of a square inside another square.
It is also sometimes referred to as a “square set on point” or “diamond in a square.”
A “square in a square” quilt features this beginner-friendly block in its overall design. It doesn’t have to be the only quilt block used, but it is usually the dominant block.
How to Make a Square in A Square Quilt Block?
There are several different methods for making this fun block, but I want to show you the simplest way. You can use this method to make any size square in a square block you want.
Step 1: Cut the Squares
Decide what size squares you want to use. I want my center square to measure 4” when the block is finished, so I need to cut my center square at 4 ½”x 4 ½”.
I then need to cut two squares ¼” larger than my center square. I will cut two 4 ¾” squares for my points.
Cut these two larger squares in half on the diagonal to make four triangles.
Step 2: Sew the First Set of Points to the Center Square
Take two points (triangles) and place them on opposite corners of the center square. Make sure the fabrics are right sides together.
Center the points on the square and pin them in place.
Sew the points to the square using a ¼” seam allowance.
Press the seams to open the block.
Step 3: Sew the Second Set of Points to the Center Square
Take the other two points and repeat the process of centering them on the center square and sewing them with ¼” seam allowance.
Press the block open.
Step 4: Trim the Block
Our final step is trimming the block and ensuring it is square. Using a square ruler with a 45° angle mark, line up the 45° angle on the diagonal of the block.
Trim the two exposed edges.
Next, line up the 7” mark with the square corner you just cut and trim the other two edges.
You now have one 7” square in a square quilt block.
15 Square in a Square Quilt Block Patterns You’ll Want to Try
I have assembled an excellent selection of quilt patterns that feature the square in a square block. These patterns will show you what is possible with this seemingly simple quilt block.
1. Raw Edge Square in a Square
Here is a fun quilt pattern that features square in a square blocks with small raw edge squares in the center of each block. This pattern has a warm, rustic feel and would work great with flannel fabrics. The finished quilt size is 50”x62”.
2. Up Square Down Square
This is a beautiful modern quilt pattern that features two different square in a square designs. It is a jellyroll-friendly pattern that includes five size options. You could also use fabric scraps to make a fun scrappy-style quilt.
3. Wonky Square in a Square Block
Isn’t this a fun block? This pattern will show you how to make this quirky offset square in a square block from start to finish. You could create a quilt with just this block or combine it with other blocks to create a unique quilt pattern. The block will measure 7”x7”, and the instructions include foundation paper piecing.
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4. Floating Stars
“Floating Stars” is an excellent example of how you can use the square in a square block with other blocks to elevate a design. In this pattern, the square in a square block is the center of the eight-point star blocks. This pattern will help you make an 82”x88” quilt.
5. Buttonton Square
Here is an adorable mini quilt pattern with instructions to make a 21” square wall hanging quilt. The design is simple, with the square in a square blocks surrounded by sashing.
The unique part of this pattern is the use of buttons to embellish the sashing and the quilt blocks. You can use scraps or yardage for this project.
6. All Season Squares
This beautiful quilt features four different blocks, two of which are square in a square blocks. The mixture of blocks gives this quilt design a uniquely modern take on traditional blocks.
The pattern instructions will show you how to make a queen-size quilt, but you could easily make a smaller or larger quilt by subtracting or adding blocks.
7. Baby Blocks
Here is an excellent beginner-friendly pattern that uses square in a square and nine-patch blocks for the entire quilt top. You can make a 34”x43” baby quilt following the instructions in the pattern. The blocks are in an “on-point” layout adding an extra layer of design to the overall quilt.
8. Square Up
Here is another excellent example of using one block as the center of the square in a square block.
The designer takes it a step further by adding sawtooth blocks on the outside of the square in a square block, giving this quilt a gorgeous style. The finished quilt measures 66 ½” square.
9. Fair and Square
“Fair and Square” is a fun beginner-friendly quilt pattern that you can use with yardage, fat quarters, or scraps if you have plenty of larger pieces. The pattern includes four size options to make this quilt for any occasion. The lap-size quilt would make a wonderful gift for the holidays.
10. Cary’s Quilt Pattern
How gorgeous is this ombre color palette? This modern quilt design features a crisp square in a square block in the center of a beautifully bordered strip block.
With this pattern, you will have five size choices, and it will look fabulous no matter your color selection.
11. Stars and Diamonds
This quilt pattern features a fun scrappy eight-point star and square in a square blocks in a checkerboard layout. The designer includes the wide sashing, which makes the blocks pop on the light background. This would be a fun pattern for friends or a quilt guild.
12. Scenic Detour
In this pattern, the square in a square block is used as a corner block for the larger blocks. This is the most common use of the square in a square quilt block.
It’s a great supporting block and works beautifully to accentuate other blocks. This pattern includes four size options.
In this quilt pattern, you will use two sizes of the square in a square blocks. The center of the quilt top is made of only two types of blocks in a checkerboard layout. This fabulous beginner-friendly pattern looks beautiful in a scrappy style design. The finished quilt will measure 84”x92”.
14. Desert Diamonds
This gorgeous modern quilt pattern features large square in a square blocks with smaller blocks surrounding them. I love the designer’s use of negative space in the center of the blocks. The pattern includes three size options and two color variations to inspire you.
15. Crystal and Gem
This beginner-friendly modern quilt pattern includes instructions for crib, throw, and full-size quilts. The designer also has a coloring page in the pattern so you can try out different color combinations. This is a fat-quarter or scrap-friendly pattern.
I hope these quilts have inspired you to think outside the box when it comes to the square in a square quilt block and to try something new. This block can be traditional, or it can be modern. It all depends on your imagination.