Sew a beautiful holiday themed star-in-a-star quilt! This fast and easy throw quilt will make your home merrier and cozier.
I designed this quilt a couple years ago and made a smaller version for my family. At the time, Christmas was fast approaching so I was forced to just give you a brief ‘how I did it’ cliff notes version of the pattern. Inspired by these adorable Christmas fabrics from Ink & Arrow, I decided to make a bigger and better Merry Stars Quilt and finally write a real pattern!
UPDATE: This blog post has been converted to an optional PDF that’s optimized for printing. Find it here. The pattern in the blog post below is totally free to read, print, and sew! Just hit CTRL +P on your computer to print. The Optimized for Printing PDF download for $2 is totally optional.
I find that I am often fabric driven instead of pattern driven. I fall in love with some fabric first, and then I am obsessed to find (or design) a project to go with it. Are you fabric driven or pattern driven??? Anyway, this is the fabric collection that drove me to it. 🙂 It’s called Mingle & Jingle and right now you can find it all at Fat Quarter Shop.
The corners of the Merry Stars Quilt feature my free Holly & Berries applique pattern.
This new Merry Stars Quilt finishes at 67” square – so it’s the perfect ‘snuggle quilt’ size. Stitch one up to cuddle under while you read Christmas stories and watch holiday movies this year!
And, because the variable star design gets bigger and bigger, piecing it is really fast. Check out how much time it took me:
Day 1 – cutting (just an hour or so)
Day 2 – piecing (most of the day)
Day 3 – preparing the backing and basting the quilt sandwich together (a couple hours in the evening)
Day 4 – quilting (most of the day) and binding (night time fun!)
If I can fit it in – so can you… so make sure you let me know how long this takes you! 🙂
Merry Stars Quilt Pattern
You will need:
1 1/2 yards Pixie Dot White
1 yard Santa’s Crew Wintergreen
1 yardLinear Argyle Red
1/4 yard Christmas Trees Dk Wintergreen
1/2 yard Linear Argyle Med Wintergreen
1/4 yard Christmas Pets Gray
1/2 yard Snowflake Stripe White
1/3 yard Christmas Pets Pale Wintergreen
1/3 yard Christmas Trees Gray
1 yard Snowflake Stripe Red (for binding and in piano keys border)
plus 4 yards of fabric for the backing
HeatnBond lite (for the Holly & Berries applique)
Sew the first Star Block:
As you probably observed, the center of the Merry Stars Quilt is made up of 4 variable stars that are 48”x 24”, 12”, and 6” squares. I sewed the first (6”) star block with a cute 3 1/2” fussy cut elf in the center. After that, each star block will become the center of the next larger one.
The points and background of each star are formed from 4 flying geese units and 4 corner squares. After all your cutting is done, start by making the first 4 flying geese:
How to make 4 flying geese units from 5 squares:
1. Draw a diagonal line across the back of the 2 3/8” squares that will make the points of the star. Pin 2 squares to opposite corners of the 4 1/4” background fabric square as shown above.
Note: this is a cutting line, so you can use a regular pen or pencil if you wish.
2. Sew 1/4” away from either side of the lines, diagonally across the square. Then cut along the drawn lines.
3. Press the triangles open. Pin the last two small squares as shown above, and again sew on both sides 1/4” away from the line.
4. Cut along the line again and you’ve got 4 flying geese units! I already trimmed off the ‘dog ears’ in the second photo above.
5. Arrange the flying geese units with the 3 1/2” center square and the 2” background corner square units as shown above left. Stitch together in three rows first. Then sew the rows together to make the block.
Note: All piecing seam allowances are 1/4”.
Continue the pattern of variable stars:
1. Use the four 3 7/8” and the 7 1/4” squares to make flying geese units for the 12” star. Assemble together with the first star block and the 3 1/2” background corner squares. Stitch.
2. Use the four 6 7/8” and the 13 1/4” squares to make flying geese units for the 24” star. Assemble together with the second star block and the 6 1/2” background corner squares. Stitch.
3. Use the four 12 7/8” and the 25 1/4” squares to make flying geese units for the 48” star. Assemble together with the first star block and the 12 1/2” background corner squares. Stitch.
Make the border:
1. Trace the Holly & Berries pattern on to the back of the Heat n Bond Lite to make 8 holly leaves and 12 berries (see cutting chart above). Fuse 2 leaves and three berries to a 10” corner square piece as shown above right. Stitch around the shapes as desired.
2. Divide the twenty-four 2 1/2” strips into 4 sets, each with 6 strips (one from each print).
2. Sew 6 strips together to make a strip set that is approximately 12 1/2” x 42”.
Hint: Love sewing with strips? My Craftsy class The Quilted Tree Skirt is coming out in one week – and it has strip piecing to make it easy and fun! You can see a picture of me on-set with it below. 🙂
3. Cut off the selvages and subcut the strip set into 4 pieces that are each 10” wide.
4. Turn the strips and sew the 4 pieces together to make a piano keys border piece that is 10” x 48 1/2”.
Repeat steps 2-4 three more times to make 4 border pieces.
5. Arrange the center star block, the 4 corner blocks, and the border pieces as shown above and sew together.
Quilt and bind as desired!
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