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Flutter into Spring With This Free Butterfly Quilt Block

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Learn how to make this adorable Butterfly Quilt Block pattern – it’s perfect for spring! The block is available in two sizes: 4 inches for crafting mini quilts, placemats, or mug rugs and a 10-inch finished size for larger quilts.

This block is perfect for advanced beginners looking for a spring-themed new project.

free butterfly quilt block

butterfly quilt block

Spring is my favorite season!

Don’t get me wrong; I also love summer, but spring holds a special place in my heart. There is just something about the transition from blah, dull winter landscapes to the gorgeous colors of spring. I love everything from the bright greens of freshly budded trees and grass to the pinks, purples, and yellows of tulips, daffodils, and other blooming trees and flowers.

Making a butterfly mini quilt is the perfect project to celebrate the arrival of spring, don’t you think?

Why this butterfly quilt block should go on your must-make list:

  • Simple: The block uses only a handful of pieces, so it comes together quickly. The butterfly wings are fashioned with straightforward snowballed corners, adding charm and character to the block without adding difficulty.
  • Improve your skills: By incorporating small squares, you can perfect your precision, as the block requires a fine balance of careful seam allowances.
  • Versatile Sizes: Available in a mini 4-inch size and a larger 10-inch size, it offers flexibility in sewing projects, from mug rugs to large quilts.
  • Perfect Spring Project: This block captures the essence of spring, making it the ideal project to welcome the new season.
free butterfly quilt block pattern

Butterfly Quilt Blocks – 2 sizes

The Butterfly Quilt block comes with a free printable pattern/template and includes two different-sized blocks: a small 4-inch block and a larger 10-inch butterfly, so you can easily change up your projects.

I recommend making a couple of practice blocks before using your good fabric. I had to make a couple before I got my seam allowances just right. (The 4-inch block is small, so it is important to get the perfect scant quarter-inch seam allowance to get a 4.5-inch unfinished square.) Do keep in mind that you can always trim the block down just a smidge smaller if you need to, as long as you trim all the blocks to the same size.

Variations

Make this block your own! If you have smaller scraps to use up, you could change up the butterfly wings and use two or four different fabrics for different looks. 

butterfly block variations

Butterfly Quilt ideas

There are so many ways to use the butterfly block in quilts. Here are just a couple of ideas:

butterfly quilt ideas

The first one would come together quickly since it is made with a 10-inch butterfly block and a square block of fabric. The second is made with a 10-inch block and a 10-inch chain block.  I have the tutorial for the chain block coming up in my next post.

I’m currently working on this mini quilt, made with the  4-inch block to hang on my wall:

butterfly mini quilt

Are You Ready to Get Started?

Access The Butterfly Quilt Blocks 

Here

Materials Needed To Make The Butterfly Block

Skill Level:

Advanced-beginner-friendly (I call it advanced due to the snowball technique.)

Time Needed:

About 20 minutes.

Block Details:

The large block is 10.5 inches unfinished. When finished into a pillow, quilt, etc., it will be 10 inches square. The small block is 4.5 inches unfinished and 4 inches finished. The assembly is exactly the same on the two blocks.

Tips for adding Snowball corners

  • When working with small squares, it helps to press them with spray starch. This keeps the squares from getting wonky and pulled out of shape when you sew.
  • When making several snowball quilt blocks at a time, I like to use washable glue instead of pins to hold the small squares in place.
  • Use a fine-tip pen or pencil to draw the diagonal line across the snowball squares. Another option, instead of drawing a line, is to fold the square on the diagonal and press it with an iron. The pressed line is a bit harder to see, but it is much faster when you have several blocks to make.
  • When sewing the snowball corner square to the larger square, instead of sewing directly on the line, sew just along the outside edge of the line; that way, when you press the corner flat, it will line up better with the edges.
  • Before trimming the snowball corners off, press the block flat to set the seam.

Quilt Assembly/Sewing Tips:

  • Press and starch squares before sewing and cutting. It helps to get a precise cut.
  • Don’t forget to check your seam allowance before starting to sew! Every time I start a project, I line my needle up using a seam allowance ruler. I also recommend this quarter-inch foot with the guide. (Just choose one that fits your machine.) You can use the seam allowance ruler with this foot, and once I have made the adjustment to my needle, the guide helps keep all my seams perfectly aligned.  
  • Nest the seams when sewing the blocks together.
  • Sewing rows together: When sewing the blocks together in a row, I recommend sewing two blocks together at a time rather than one block after another after another. If you sew the rows together one after another, the straightness of your piecing can get off.

Block Sewing instructions

Step 1: Gather Fabrics.

You need two colorful scraps for the wings, a small strip for the body, and another color for the background and snowball pieces.

Step 2: Cut Fabric pieces.

4-Inch Block

Background Fabric

  • cut 4 – 1.5 x 1.5 inch
  • cut 2 – 1 x 1 inch

Patterned Fabric

  • Butterfly wing fabric: cut 2 – 2.25 x 4.5
  • Butterfly body fabric: cut 1 -1 x 3.5
4-inch butterfly quilt block pattern

10-Inch Block

Background Fabric

  • cut 4 – 2.25 x 2.25 inchh
  • cut 2 – 2 x 1.5 inch

Patterned Fabric 

  • Butterfly wing fabric: cut 2 – 4.75 x 10.5
  • Butterfly body fabric: cut 1 – 2 x 8.5
10 inch butterfly quilt block

Step 3: Make The Block.

(The steps below describe the assembly of the 4-inch block. The process is the same for the 10-inch block, with the exception of the fabric pieces differing in size.)

1. Assemble the butterfly body.

Sew the 1-inch background squares to each end of the 1 x 3.5-inch body strip.

Press the seams flat.

How to make a butterfly quilt block

2. Assemble the wings.

First, using two of the 1.5-inch background squares, snowball the two inside corners of the butterfly wing

To snowball the corners:

  1. Draw a line from corner to corner on one of the 1.5 by 1.5-inch squares. Line the square along the top right corner of the side of the 2.25 x 4.5-inch piece of fabric. Sew along the line you drew.
  2. Trim off the excess fabric.
  3. Press the corner flat with an iron and use a ruler to square up any wonky corners.
  4. Repeat for the other wing.
How to make a butterfly quilt block

3. Assemble the butterfly.

Sew the two wings to the body. Take care to align the correct edge to the butterfly body. (I sewed mine on backward multiple times.

Press the bock flat and trim to 4.5 inches.

How to make a butterfly quilt block

That’s it! Now go make a bunch more!

free butterfly quilt block pattern

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Butterfly Quilt Block Pattern Assembly Instructions

butteffly block - 2 sizes

Make a 4 or 10-inch butterfly quilt block.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Active Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Difficulty easy/intermediate

Materials

  • Fabric
  • Pattern
  • Basic quilting supplies

Instructions

(The steps below describe the assembly of the 4-inch block. The process is the same for the 10-inch block, with the exception of the fabric pieces' differing sizes.)

1. Assemble the butterfly body.

  1. Sew the 1-inch background squares to each end of the 1 x 3.5-inch body strip.
  2. Press the seams flat.

2. Assemble the wings.

  1. First, using two of the 1.5-inch background squares, snowball the two inside corners of the butterfly wing. 

To snowball the corners:

  1. Draw a line from corner to corner on one of the 1.5 by 1.5-inch squares. Line the square along the top right corner of the side of the 2.25 x 4.5-inch piece of fabric. Sew along the line you drew.
  2. Trim off the excess fabric.
  3. Press the corner flat with an iron and use a ruler to square up any wonky corners.
  4. Repeat for the other wing.

3. Assemble the butterfly.

  1. Sew the two wings to the body. Take care to align the correct edge to the butterfly body. (I sewed mine on backward multiple times.
  2. Press the bock flat and trim to 4.5 inches.

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One Comment

  1. Love this design! Thank you!