As a quilter, you’re probably constantly searching for your next quilt project, right?
There are so many beautiful patterns, but how do you choose?
Let’s say you have some gorgeous fabric that features a large print.
Many patterns want you to cut small pieces to create intricate blocks, but what if you want the fabric to be the focal point?
I’ve got the perfect pattern for you; enter the “walk-about quilt pattern.”
Let’s check it out!
- What Is a Walk-About Quilt?
- Basic Walk-About Quilt Instructions
- 11 Walk About Quilt Patterns That Are Stunning And Unique
What Is a Walk-About Quilt?
The walk-about pattern (sometimes called a spice rack quilt) is a straightforward, beginner-friendly quilt design with large squares, usually displaying a large print design and an arrow block.
Since you only need to piece together one block type, this is a quick and easy pattern for any skill level.
The layout traditionally has the design starting in the center of the quilt top and radiating outward. Still, some modern quilt designers have given this pattern a fun off-center twist which we’ll see later in this post.
Basic Walk-About Quilt Instructions
Before we look at some beautiful examples of a walk-about quilt, I would like to walk you through the steps of our free walk-about quilt pattern in this short tutorial.
Following these instructions, you can make a 90” x 90” quilt top.
1. Choose the Fabrics
I recommend choosing three fabrics for this quilt project. Choose one fabric with a fun, bold print and then two coordinating fabrics.
- Bold Print: 3 ½ yards
- Coordinating Fabric #1: 1 ¾ yards
- Coordinating Fabric #2: 1 ¾ yards
2. Cut the Fabrics
From the bold fabric, cut 13- 18 ½” squares. From the coordinating fabrics, cut 48- 9 ½” squares from each color.
3. Piece Together the “Arrow” Blocks.
To make the arrow blocks, you need four half-square triangle (HST) blocks. To create the HST blocks, take one square from each coordinating fabric and place them right sides together.
Draw a horizontal line from the top left corner to the bottom right (or vice versa), then sew along that line. Cut ¼” from the stitched line to leave a ¼” seam allowance. Press the seam to the left or right, whichever you prefer.
Take four HST blocks and arrange them so they are in the arrow shape.
Sew the blocks together to create the arrow block.
Repeat this process to create the remaining 11 arrow blocks.
4. Sew all the blocks together to complete the quilt top.
Use the diagram below to create the layout for your quilt top, then sew the blocks together.
There you have your beautiful yet simple walk-about quilt top.
11 Walk About Quilt Patterns That Are Stunning And Unique
Now that you have a general idea of how this pattern is constructed let’s look at some gorgeous examples of the walk-about quilt pattern.
All of these examples are beginner-friendly and use traditional piecing methods.
Here is an excellent example of using a bold print fabric in the large square blocks of this pattern. The maker chose vibrant coordinating colors, which help the floral print to pop against the navy blue and green arrow blocks.
The maker used another bold floral fabric to create a border around the quilt top to finish the quilt.
Here is a beautiful pattern written by Ann Lauer of Grizzly Gulch Gallery. In this pattern, you will find step-by-step instructions to create this quilt. The instructions include four sizes, from lap size to king.
3. Spice Rack
Here is a scrappy version of the walk-about pattern. As you can see, the maker used some fussy cut methods to showcase adorable cat prints. The maker used Jenny Doan’s tutorial to create this beautiful quilt.
Using this quilt pattern for a baby quilt is genius! This adorable gender-neutral baby quilt features a sweet animal fabric for the large squares and a modern black and white arrow block design. This quilt will be cherished for years to come.
The maker of this quilt used a lovely butterfly fabric for the bold print and chose a couple of colors from that fabric to create the arrow blocks. I love how the arrows create movement on the quilt top but aren’t too busy for the overall design. You could easily replicate this quilt with your own fabrics.
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Here is an exciting twist on the original walk-about pattern. This pattern features our basic arrow blocks, but they are positioned differently, giving this quilt a new look. This pattern includes four sizes that you can choose between.
Floral prints are a popular choice for this quilt pattern because the block layout almost resembles the tilework in a garden courtyard.
Since we are using large squares for half of the blocks of this quilt pattern, it makes sense to choose a large, gorgeous floral print for the design. The three different-sized borders add a nice finishing touch to this quilt.
The maker of this beautiful quilt used dark brown and off-white fabrics to accentuate the floral fabric they chose for the focal fabric.
If you look closely, you can see that the arrow blocks are made up of four HST blocks, just like our example quilt from earlier in this post. If you are a beginner quilter, this is a great choice for you.
I love that the maker of this quilt didn’t shy away from using multiple prints for her quilt top. She still chose a bold poppy fabric for the large squares but chose a small floral print for her arrow blocks. Again, the borders of this quilt give it a nice finished look and tie all the colors together.
Here is a gorgeous walk-about quilt with patriotic fabrics, bold red arrows, and a border. Those red arrows look SO crisp and beautiful against that white background color. This quilt was made for the charity Quilts of Valor.
Here is the perfect example of using the fussy cut method (cutting fabric specifically so you have part of the print in the center of the block) to cut a large print for the square blocks.
This quilt looks like it was pulled straight from a secret garden, right? The maker even found a green fabric that features leaves and greenery. Gorgeous!
This beginner-friendly pattern is a great first quilt or a quick project for more experienced quilters. We hope these examples inspired you to make your own walk-about quilts soon.