Sunday, February 23, 2020

Charmed, I'm Sure! An Oldie, But A Goodie!

Hi, all!

Welcome to the second week of Charmed, I'm Sure! A series of tutorials designed to be simple enough to use for comfort quilts to be donated, that will also help you build skills and learn new tips and ways to work quickly and efficiently!

Last week, I shared this quilt...

...along with a link to Amy Smart's fantastic tutorial for a simple charm quilt on point!  This was such an easy quilt to make, and a great scrap buster.

Today I want to share a pattern I've seen around a lot, so it's an oldie, but this was actually the first time I've ever tried it myself.  You may have made a disappearing nine-patch in the past (most of us have!) but have you ever tried a disappearing four-patch?  I don't know about you, but I really like cutting up blocks to create something new and different.  So it was about time to try a D4P!

I started with a bunch of two-patch blocks made using some batik charm squares paired with a black and white "etch-a-sketch" print.  While not scrappy, the batik squares had been in my stash f-o-r-e-v-e-r, and this was the tail-end of the black and white print.  I feel virtuous!

FYI, I pressed all the seams towards the B&W print.

I chose two of the two-patch blocks, a blue and a green, and sewed them together into a four-patch block, with the black and white squares on opposite corners.  I "spun" the center seams (click here for a great quick tutorial on the process by Beth Sellers) and then laid it on my cutting board.

Placing the 2" mark of my ruler vertically along the center line, I cut to the right side of the ruler.  Without moving the pieces, I repeated the process to the left side and also horizontally above and below the center line.

And this is what I ended up with!  Now it's time for the magic to happen.  Experiment with moving pieces around!  In the picture below, I took the top center and bottom center pieces and swapped them, and did the same with the right center and left center pieces.

And here's a sample layout that you could make with this block...

But I decided to try something a little bit different.  I took the same center outside blocks and just turned them around in place, and ended up with this block.

I made a few more, then started playing with layouts and ended up with this one...

I sure was happy to get to church and a functioning design wall!

And here's a tip - when you are trying to figure out how to lay out your colors with this layout, lay out your two-patch blocks so the colors match, then decide what colors you want to be on the other side.  Place the four-patch blocks in place before cutting and re-sewing to see how the colors will work.  As you can see, I figured this out late in the game, or I wouldn't have two blue blocks on the top half of this layout!  Alas - live and learn!

After making all the four-patch blocks on Wednesday night at church, I headed home with a picture and a plan!  I sliced-and-diced all the four-patch blocks and put them back together again, then assembled the whole top.

And voila!  A sweet little top just large enough for a baby or small child, or for a comfort item for a foster child.  The blocks finish up just slightly larger than 8" (finished), so this top made with 20 blocks is about 32 x 40.  It would be easy to make almost any size quilt, just increase the number of blocks made.  Time constraints limited this one, but I may make a larger one soon, because it is quick and fun!  

And now, I want to know - - - am I the only person in the world who has never made a disappearing four-patch block before?  

Come back next Sunday for another fun charm pack quilt.  Because those charms aren't going to sew themselves up by themselves!




  1. What a wonderful layout you decided on, that is fabulous, and anyone, child or adult would be thrilled with a quilt like that.

  2. Looks great. Often simple (as in 4 patch starter) is best. Looks so great diced up. Thanks for the helpful instructions.

  3. I've never made one but I'll sure try after seeing your tutorial!

  4. I'm with Ellen T. Never made one but I so like the design in this quilt that it is now on my to-do list. Thanks for the inspiration, as always. ;^)

  5. Cool! I've done both and I agree, lots of fun. Next time try an uneven measurement for your subcuts.

  6. I don't think I've made one either :-0 I'll need to remedy that :-) That black and white makes the colors pop nicely. This is a sweet quilt. Thanks for the inspiration!

  7. P.S. I'm still enjoying that PDF tab you have so we can save these tutorials :-)

  8. I've never made a disappearing 4-patch! I have made the disappearing 9 patch but it was too random for me!
    This is amazing! I'm going to try it! Thanks!

  9. I've made a disappearing 9 patch, but not a 4 patch.

  10. I've never made a disappearing block of any sort. The process doesn't appeal to me.

  11. Nope, Sarah! You are NOT the only one who has never made a D4P. I've done the D9P thing, though and now can't WAIT to try our your tutorial!!

  12. I haven't made one yet either. I love how your plan is coming together. I can see that a design wall is definitely a plus for this one.

  13. I love how the brights play with the black and white print on this one! I've made one D4P but the layout was quite different. I think I sliced the inner pieces skinnier, too. Lots of different ways to play the game, I think :)

    Here's the link to mine, if you're curious:

  14. I haven't made a D4P, but I made a D9P I Spy quilt which was fun. I like the circle look of yours. There are tons of both 4 and 9 patch layouts on Pinterest for those who need more inspiration.

  15. I've done D9P but it's been years. I've not tried D4P, will have to give it a go! Love your layout and that etched fabric makes a great background!

  16. I've made D4P blocks per friendship block requests in my local guild. We didn't cut down the middle of the patches though. As I remember it we cut so the inner patches were narrower than the outer patches. The resultant effect was of larger patches and narrow sashing.

  17. Love your layout, and I may not have made one yet either!


Comments make me smile!! If you want a PDF of a pattern, PLEASE leave your email address in your comment, or email me directly at salliesue57 (at) gmail (dot) com!