Mini-Tutorial: No Waste Granny Square Quilt Blocks

No one likes waste, especially of fabric. When you’re making Granny Square blocks out of 2.5″ squares, a bit of waste isn’t really that big of a deal. But I bought 2 Summersville charm packs to use for huge Granny Square blocks, and the thought of throwing away all that background fabric waste was enough to persuade me to look for a better way.

In a way, a Granny Square block is a small on point quilt. The finished sizes of the inside ‘blocks’ determine what size triangles you need to make those outside components. Quiltville has an excellent article about the maths of On-Point quilts, which is where I got the information to make this block (& tutorial).

The ‘block’ size in this tutorial is 4.5″ square (finished) – if you are making yours larger or smaller, I recommend printing the Quiltville article. This quick tutorial is for using 5″ charms.

What you’ll need for one block:

  • {13x} 5″ x 5″ charms for the centre
  • {2x} 7 5/8″ x 7 5/8″ background for side triangles (I used black)
  • {2x} 4 1/8″ x 4 1/8″ background for corners

Cut the LARGE squares twice diagonally. Yield = 8 side triangles. Cut the SMALL squares ONCE diagonally each. Yield = 4 corner triangles.

Here’s the layout. Sew the centre squares together into strips, then add the side triangles. The middle (longest) strip will need 2 of the corner triangles, and then you can add the other corner triangles where you need them. The triangles are intentionally sized generously so you can trim to a generous 1/4″ on the sides. I promise you won’t have to trim very much.

Ta-Da! And with the On Point maths already worked out for you, you can adjust this mini tutorial to accommodate any size of square.

© Copyright J C Excell, 2012. You are welcome to use any SewHappyGeek tutorial for personal use. You are not given permission to use my pictures or my words without giving me credit and linking back to the original. You are NEVER allowed to copy an entire tutorial or post.
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10 Responses to Mini-Tutorial: No Waste Granny Square Quilt Blocks

  1. Mary says:

    I’ve not tried granny squares yet, but this no waste version might just inspire me to have a go. thanks for sharing

  2. Barbara says:

    Thanks so much for taking the time and photos for such a great tut. I have read about several of these quilts lately and love the cozy aspect of them. Appreciate all your tuts here !

  3. Katy says:

    Very cunning plan missus!

  4. Mrs.Pickles says:

    lovely block I am going to have to give this a try

  5. Debbe says:

    I love the granny square blocks. Great tutorial.

  6. Katarina says:

    Thank you so much Jenna. Your tutorials inspire me to sew things I’ve never tried before.

  7. Jennie P. says:

    Thanks for the great tutorial. I detest the waste of fabric!

  8. Janine says:

    This is a great tutorial. I hate throwing away fabric!

  9. Melissa says:

    Great tutorial! I’ve been wanting to make this block but I didn’t want to waste any of my precious stash :)

  10. Great tutorial! I like how this uses up extra fabric you might have : )




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