Ohio Star - free patchwork block

Posted by Ruth on 4 February 2013 | 0 Comments
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Today I made an Ohio Star block. This is a nine-patch block similar to the Twin Star block I made a few weeks ago.


You need three different fabrics. I used two orange fabrics for the star and a pale background fabric. Pretty much any combination will work. You need to cut nine squares - four create the quarter square triangle units (larger squares), the other five are plain. 

Here are the cutting sizes for 6", 9" and 12" finished blocks.





background fabric

ONE 3 1/4" sq
FOUR 2 1/2" sqs

ONE 4 1/4" sq
FOUR 3 1/2" sqs

ONE 5 1/4" sq
FOUR 4 1/2" sqs

main fabric

TWO 3 1/4" sqs
ONE 2 1/2" sq

TWO 4 1/4" sqs
ONE 3 1/2" sq

TWO 5 1/4" sqs
ONE 4 1/2" sq

2nd fabric

ONE 3 1/4" sq

ONE 4 1/4" sq

ONE 5 1/4" sq

We are going to make the quarter square triangle blocks first (the star points). Use the FOUR larger squares to make these. The first thing you need to do is draw a diagonal line through either the two main fabric squares OR the background and 2nd fabric squares. I did the latter.

With right sides together, pair one main fabric square with the background square. Pair the other with the 2nd fabric square. Raw edges should be even on all edges. Now sew 1/4" both sides of the line. Tip: I usually make this seam a little smaller so it gives me room to trim later.

Once they are sewn, cut along the drawn line. When I'm making lots of these, I use my rotary cutter free hand - it makes it a lot quicker. You do need a steady hand though. You could use a ruler too, but that takes aligning so probably just as fast with the scissors.

Position these triangles on your ironing board with the main fabric side on top. Press the seam as is (this sets the stitches), then use the tip of the iron to press the main fabric triangle over the seam. Repeat for all four triangles.

Now you have four half square triangle units. Two with main fabric and background, two with main fabric and 2nd fabric. No need to trim yet.

Draw a diagonal line, on the wrong side, perpendicular to the seam line on the two background units. Take one of each unit and place them right sides together so seams butt up together. Seams will be in opposite direction and main fabric should be on opposite sides and not together. Take a peak to make sure they are right.

Now stitch 1/4" either side of the drawn line, just like you did before, making a slightly smaller seam.

You are going to cut along the line again, but before you do, just check it looks right by opening it up. It is easier to change it now than after it is cut. I wonder how I know that <grin>

Repeat the pressing. It does not matter which way you press it however if you have a light background it is always best to press away from that.

Now time to trim. Please note here: it depends what size you are making as to what size you trim to. I am making the 6" block so I need to trim to 2 1/2". For the 9" block, trim to 3 1/2". For the 12" block, trim to 4 1/2"

Make sure you align the diagonal line of your ruler along the seam line. Also check that the midway point (in my case for the 6" block, that is 1 1/4") is right at the center point where the seams meet. Midway for 9" block is 1 3/4". Midway for 12" block is 2 1/4".

Trim all sides to make the correct size square for your block.

You will have four of these. Look how neat and accurate they are. Perfect, now we can move on and make the block using accurate cut and pieced squares.

Lay all squares out to form the star block. You will need to rotate the quarter square units so the 2nd fabric triangle is next to the center square.

Join the squares in strips first and press toward the plain squares. This will mean the seams butt together when you join the strips.

Now join the strips to complete the Ohio Star block. Remember to give it a good press.

Pretty, isn't it?





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