Free 3 Yard Quilt Pattern: Splendor

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Sew a beautiful quilt with just 3 yards of fabric! 3 yard quilt patterns are all the rage among quilters right now. If you have 3 one yard cuts of fabric in your stash and just a day or so to make a quilt, this is exactly the quilt pattern you need. Splendor is a 3 yard lap quilt pattern that features Four Crown Quilt Blocks and Flower Patch Quilt Blocks.

Don’t miss my other 3 yard quilt patterns too:

This blog post has been converted to an optional PDF that’s optimized for printing. Find it here. The free Splendor 3 Yard Quilt Pattern is included in the blog post below and 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. Did you know you can get ALL the Optimized for Printing PDF files organized in a library for you to access anytime you want? Check it out.

Why should I sew a 3 yard quilt?

3 yard quilts are usually lap quilts because they don’t require a lot of fabric. Since this type of quilt isn’t very big, you can finish your quilt quickly and give it as a gift or use it in your home. Because of the smaller size, lap quilts like this one are easy to quilt on a domestic sewing machine. They are great for beginners.

You’ll have enough fabric to finish the quilt top including the 12 blocks and a 2” border. More fabric is required for the backing and binding.

If you love to use your Accuquilt fabric cutter like I do, I’ll share the optional cutting die numbers to make this pattern Accuquilt friendly. Using an Accuquilt is optional, but I love it! See all my Accuquilt friendly quilts. Look under the cutting dimensions below for a list of fabric cutting dies that you may use instead.

Except for the strips, all of the dies I used for this quilt were in the GO! Qube Mix & Match 8″ Block set.

How to Choose the Right 3 Yards of Fabric

The Splendor 3 Yard Quilt Pattern makes it easy to pick your fabrics. First find a beautiful ‘focus fabric’ in your stash or at your local quilt shop. This should be a fabric that really sings to you – or that makes you think of the intended recipient of the quilt.

In the example above, I wanted a very traditional looking quilt, so my focus fabric is a floral by Morris & Co for Free Spirit Fabrics.

After you have chosen your focus fabric, choose one coordinating fabric that is lighter and one coordinating fabric that is darker. Both of my coordinating fabrics are near solid blenders.

Wouldn’t a Christmas Splendor quilt look fabulous? The three fabrics in the quilt above are from the collection Cheer and Merriment from Moda.

If you follow these instructions for choosing your fabrics, you can’t go wrong, and you probably already have 3 fabrics in your stash that will work great.

Splendor Free Three Yard Quilt Pattern

This free quilt pattern includes instructions for 2 different blocks: the Four Crowns Block and the Flower Patch Block. Both of these blocks are 9-patches so they look great together. There are a total of 12 blocks in the quilt and each block finishes at 12”.

The finished lap quilt is 40” x 52”. It’s perfect for snuggling on the couch or donating to Quilts of Valor, Project Linus, or another worthy organization.

You will need:

  • 3 one yard cuts of fabric (a main focus fabric, one darker fabric, and one lighter fabric)
  • a rotary cutter acrylic ruler, and mat
  • sewing machine
  • thread (I suggest thread matching the lighter fabric)
  • ironing board and iron
  • pencil or fabric marking pen

To sew the quilt top into a finished quilt, you will also need:

  • 2 1/2 yards of backing fabric (or enough to piece together a 57” x 45” quilt back)
  • a piece of quilt batting at least 57” x 45”
  • 1/2 yard of binding fabric

Cutting:

Fabric layout for 1 yard of focus fabric.

Fabric A is your focus fabric. From this fabric, cut:

  • 12 squares 5 1/2” x 5 1/2”
  • 6 squares 4 1/2” x 4 1/2”
  • 24 squares 3 1/4” x 3 1/4”
  • 1 strip 2 1/2” x 42”
  • 1 strip 2 1/2” x 21”
Optional Accuquilt cutting instructions:
  • Instead of cutting 5 1/2” squares, cut 48 quarter square triangles for a 4” finished square using die 55711 (in the 8” Qube set)
  • The 4 1/2” squares may be cut with die 55010 (in the 8” Qube set)
  • The 3 1/4” squares may be cut with the 4” square on point die 55713 (in the 8” Qube set)
  • The strips may be cut with the 2 1/2” strip cutter die 55017
Fabric layout for 1 yard of darker fabric.

Fabric B is the darker fabric. From this fabric, cut:

  • 6 squares 4 1/2” x 4 1/2”
  • 24 squares 3” x 3”
  • 8 strips 2 1/2” x 42”
  • 2 strips 2 1/2” x 21”
Optional Accuquilt cutting instructions:
  • The 4 1/2” squares may be cut with die 55010 (in the 8” Qube set)
  • Instead of cutting 3” squares, cut 48 2” finished HST triangles with die 55063 (in the 8” Qube set, or on the value die)
  • The strips may be cut with the 2 1/2” strip cutter die 55017
Fabric layout for 1 yard of lighter fabric.

Fabric C is the lighter fabric. From this fabric, cut:

  • 12 squares 5 1/2” x 5 1/2”
  • 24 squares 3” x 3”
  • 5 strips 2 1/2” x 42”
  • 2 strips 2 1/2” x 21”
Optional Accuquilt cutting instructions:
  • Instead of cutting 5 1/2” squares, cut 48 quarter square triangles for a 4” finished square using die 55711 (in the 8” Qube set)
  • Instead of cutting 3” squares, cut 48 2” finished HST triangles with die 55063 (in the 8” Qube set, or on the value die)
  • The strips may be cut with the 2 1/2” strip cutter die 55017

Quilt Piecing

Use a 1/4’’ seam allowance and a short stitch length such as 1.5-2.

Use a Strip Piecing Technique to Make 4-Patch Blocks

1. Place a 2 1/2” x 42” Fabric C strip on top of a 2 1/2” x 42” Fabric B strip and sew along the long edge.

Repeat to sew four 2 1/2” x 42” Fabric B strips to four 2 1/2” x 42” Fabric C strips.

Sew one 2 1/2” x 21” Fabric B strip to one 2 1/2” x 21” Fabric C strip.

Open and press the seams toward the darker fabric.

Tips:

  • Pressing your seams toward the darker fabrics enables you to nest the seams in step 4.
  • Sewing with a scant quarter inch seam allowance will ensure your blocks are the right size, plus you’ll have enough fabric to square them up at the end.

2. Subcut each strip set into pieces that are 2 1/2” wide. You should be able to cut 16 pieces from each strip. Cut 6 pieces from the shorter strip set as well for a total of 72 Fabric B/Fabric C pieces.

3. Place a 2 1/2” x 42” Fabric C strip on top of the 2 1/2” x 42” Fabric A strip and sew along the long edge.

Sew the remaining 2 1/2” x 21” Fabric C strip to the 2 1/2” x 42” Fabric C strip.

Open and press the seams toward the darker fabric.

4. Subcut each strip set into pieces that are 2 1/2” wide. You should be able to cut 16 pieces from the long strip. Cut 8 pieces from the shorter strip set as well for a total of 24 Fabric A/Fabric C pieces.

5. Sew the pieces into 4-Patch units:

Sew 2 B/C pieces together as shown (one flipped upside down) to make a 2 color 4-patch. Repeat to make 24.

Sew a B/C piece together with a A/C piece to make a 3 color 4-patch. Repeat to make 24.

Set the 4-Patch units aside while you make quarter square triangle (QST) units.

Make 24 quarter Square Triangle Units

Note: If you are an AccuQuilt user, you may have cut quarter square triangle pieces instead of 5 1/2” squares. In that case, sew 2 Fabric A quarter square triangle pieces together with 2 Fabric C quarter square triangle pieces to make the 4” QST unit shown below. Repeat 24 times.

1. Use the pencil or fabric marking pen to draw a diagonal line across the wrong side of all the 5 1/2” Fabric C squares. This is a cutting line.

Place the 5 1/2” Fabric C squares right sides together with the 5 1/2” Fabric A squares. Pin the squares together.

2. Sew 1/4’’ away from the cutting line on on both sides of the line.

3. Cut each piece in half diagonally along the line. Open and press to make 2 half square triangles (HST units). Repeat to make 24 HST units.

4. Place two HST units right sides together with the seams aligned and the focus fabrics on opposite sides. Draw a diagonal line that crosses over the seam on the top HST. This is a cutting line. Pin the HST units together.

5. Sew 1/4’’ away from the cutting line on on both sides of the line.

6. Cut each piece in half diagonally along the line. Open and press to make 2 quarter square triangles (QST units). Trim and square up each QST unit to 4 1/2” x 4 1/2”.

Repeat to make 24 QST units that are 4 1/2” x 4 1/2”.

Make 24 Square in a Square Units

1. Subcut all of the 3” squares in half diagonally. You should have 48 light triangles (fabric C) and 48 dark triangles (fabric B). Skip this step if you are an AccuQuilt user and cut 2” finished HST triangles instead of 3” squares.

2. Center the long edge of a light triangle along one side of a 3 1/4” Fabric A square and stitch. Repeat with a dark triangle on the opposite side. Open and press the seams away from the center. Trim away the dog ears on that hang off the edges.

3. Repeat to sew one light and one dark triangle to the top and bottom edges of the square. Press the seams away from the center again. Trim and square up the unit to 4 1/2’’ square.

Repeat to make 24 square in a square units the same way.

Assemble the Four Crowns Blocks

1. Arrange the following 9 pieces to make each Four Crowns Block:

  • 4 four patch units with 3 colors
  • 4 quarter square triangle units
  • 1 Fabric B square 4 1/2” x 4 1/2”

Sew together in 3 rows. Sew the rows together to make the block.

2. Square the block to 12 1/2” x 12 1/2”, if desired. Repeat to make 6 blocks.

Tip: I love using my 12 1/2” square ruler to square up 12” blocks.

Assemble the Flower Patch Blocks

1. Arrange the following 9 pieces to make each Flower Patch Block:

  • 4 four patch units with 2 colors
  • 4 square in a square units
  • 1 Fabric A square 4 1/2” x 4 1/2”

Sew together in 3 rows. Sew the rows together to make the block.

2. Square the block to 12 1/2” x 12 1/2”, if desired. Repeat to make 6 blocks.

Assemble the Splendor 3 Yard Quilt Top

1. Arrange the 12 quilt blocks in an alternating pattern on a large table, a quilt design wall, or the floor.

2. Sew the blocks together to make 4 rows.

3. Sew the quilt block rows together.

4. Piece together 2 1/2” strips of the darker fabric (Fabric B) to make side borders. The expected length of the side borders is 48 1/2”. I highly recommend measuring the quilt top and cutting all borders the correct size. See how to cut the correct size quilt borders.

Attach the side borders.

5. The expected length of the top and bottom borders is 40 1/2”. Measure and cut 2 1/2” strips for the top and bottom border.

Attach the top and bottom border pieces.

Finishing the Splendor Three Yard Quilt Pattern

1. Cut or piece together a 57” x 45” piece of quilt backing fabric and make a quilt sandwich with the backing, batting, and top.

2. Baste together with fusible batting, pins or basting spray.

3. Quilt as desired. Straight line quilting or cross hatch quilting with your walking foot would be fast and easy.

I used quilting rulers to stitch in the ditch around all of the motifs in my blocks. Then I used my Babylock Sashiko 2 machine to add cross hatch quilting that looks like hand quilting. It’s so easy and the stitching is beautiful!

4. Cut 5 binding strips and bind using your favorite method. This is my favorite quilt binding method.

xoxo,

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Disclosure: some of my posts contain affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of those links I may receive a small commission, so thank you for supporting SewCanShe when you shop! All of the opinions are my own and I only suggest products that I actually use. 🙂

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2 Comments

  1. Can I use my 9 inch cube?

    1. The 9” cube has dies for 4 1/2” (finished) and 2 1/4” (finished) squares, half square triangles, and quarter square triangles. This quilt may be adapted for use with those shapes, but it is not the way that I designed it. You will need more fabric than just one yard of each.

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