House Quilt Block Tutorial

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Like most of the country, I spent the weekend glued to my phone watching the disaster unfold in southeast Texas. Thinking and worrying about my friends who live there along with everyone else affected by the hurricane. I've made donations to the Houston Food Bank and Austin Pets Alive. I encourage you to do and give what you can, every bit helps. I've also started a quilt for a friend to keep myself busy and channel all that worry.

If you're feeling moved to make something too, I'm sharing a quick tutorial (please excuse a few blurry photos) for the block. You'll also find materials/cutting for a throw size quilt after the block tutorial.

I made the above quilt for Love, Patchwork and Quilting a few years ago, and I'm making a simple twist on this design. This time rather than turning the blocks into flowers I'm going to arrange them in rows, like little houses in a neighborhood. Feel free to interpret the quilt however you'd like. I'll update with a photo of my quilt top when I finish it.

I'm making a quilt for one of my closest friends who lives in Houston, but will also be contributing blocks and/or finished quilts to the quilt drive effort. There is a quilt drive being organized through the hashtag #quiltsforharvey on Instagram by Diane Bohn (@fromblankpages), and Melinda (@mel_is_a_swapaholic) is accepting quilt blocks, tops, and supplies. The Linus Connection (@thelinusconnection) in Austin is also organizing a handmade blanket drive. Check their pages for information.

(If you'd like to make larger blocks, and less of them, I'd suggest using 10" print squares along with 5.25" background squares.)

House Quilt Block Tutorial:

Finished block size: 7”

For one House Block you'll need:
- (1) 7.5" print square
- (2) 4" background squares

*Use a 1/4" seam allowance unless otherwise noted.*

1. Using a water-soluble marker or a pencil, mark a diagonal line across the wrong side of two 4” background squares.

Place one square in the upper left-hand corner of a 7.5” print square, with right sides together.

Stitch across the corner on the marked line.

Trim off the corner, leaving a 1/4” seam. Press corner up.

2. Place remaining 4” background square in the upper right-hand corner of the block, with right sides together.

Stitch across the corner on the marked line.

Trim off the corner, leaving a 1/4” seam. Press corner up.

3. Square up block to 7.5” if necessary.

Below are the materials and cutting for a throw size quilt:

Finished quilt size: 56”x70”

- 20 fat quarters (or 1/4 yard cuts)
- 2 yards of background fabric
- 3 5/8 yards of backing fabric
- 64”x78” piece of batting
- 1/2 yard of binding fabric

From each fat quarter:
- Cut (4) 7.5” squares, for a total of 80.

From background fabric:
- Cut (16) 4”xWOF strips
- Subcut each strip into (10) 4” squares, for a total of 160.

Follow the block instructions to make 80 blocks.

1. Arrange blocks into 10 rows of 8 blocks each. Sew blocks together in each row. Press seams in one direction, alternating direction every other row. Sew rows together to complete quilt top. Press seams open.

2. Cut backing yardage in half. Press. Trim off the selvedge and sew your pieces together lengthwise. Press seam open. Baste, quilt, and bind.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Share your progress and finished project photos using the #modernhousequilt and #jenibaker hashtags on social media!

Happy Quilting!


  1. I also have a friend in the Houston area. Thankfully, she is okay so far. I had made a donation to Austin Pets Alive and to the Red Cross. Feeding America is one of my go-to charities but, in this case, I figured the Red Cross was probably better equipped to help. Like you said, though, any contribution is going to help.

  2. Very Cute! I might not have mine done until winter, but better cold than never, I hope.

  3. Hi Jeni,

    Thank you for this tutorial and quilt design. With so many devastating hurricanes, I think we'll be using this design for comforting donations for quite some time. Would you be able to clarify the yardage required for the background fabric?

    The block instructions say that the background squares are 4.5" which would require 2.5 yards of background fabric. The further instructions for the yardage requirements say to cut 4" squares from two yards of fabric. Thank you for letting us know which is correct.

    All the best,

    1. Hi Stephanie,

      Yikes, you're right, that's my bad. It should be 4" squares! So 2 yards are needed for the background. Thank you for catching that, I appreciate it! Don't know how I missed that lone wrong measurement.



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