Flying geese are the staple of a great number of quilt patterns. When I first began quilting, I convinced myself they were hard and time consuming. As my confidence in quilting grew, I needed a challenge. I sat down to make them, and I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly they come together. They weren’t hard at all, and I kicked myself for waiting so long to try them. NOW, I LOVE THEM! I hope you will enjoy them as well.

This post includes the start of a Pinwheel Quilt Pattern tutorial designed to teach the No Waste Method for making Four at a Time Flying Geese. This is a great baby quilt or quick project. As we work through the next couple of weeks we will:

  • Learn to make Four at a Time Flying Geese using the No Waste Method
  • Piece a small pinwheel quilt
  • Explore quilting motifs from the Quilt Motif Monthly posts.

Follow along and leave comments or images showing your progress. Also, post images on Instagram and Facebook using @jitterywings.



The materials listed here make a quilt in the same color combinations as the image. You are welcome to mix it up to include your favorite colors.


Background Fabric – 1 ¾ yard

Fat Quarters

1 – Yellow #1

1 – Yellow #2

1 – Pink #1

1 – Pink #2

1 – Green #1

1 – Green #2

Binding Fabric – ½ yard


About the Quilt

Flying Geese Size (finished) – 3” x 6”

Block Size (finished) – 12” x 12”

Quilt Size (finished) – 36” x 48”

Number of Blocks – 12


Cutting Instructions

  • From each of the 6 fat quarters cut two, 7 ¼” squares. (These will be used for the “geese” in our flying geese. They will become the pinwheel.)
  • From the background fabric cut 10 stripes, 3 7/8” x the Width of Fabric (WOF). Sub-cut each of the strips into ten, 3 7/8” squares. (These will be used for the “sky” in our flying geese.) You need 96 total.
  • From the background fabric cut 4 strips, 6 ½” x WOF. Sub-cut each of the strips into twelve, 3 ½” x 6 ½” rectangles. (These will be used, one next to each flying geese block in the individual 12” blocks.) You need 48 total.


Piecing the Flying Geese

Step 1: Gather one 7 ¼” colored square and four 3 7/8” background squares. The large square is the “goose/pinwheel” and the four smaller squares are the outer triangles or “sky” of the flying geese.

Step 2: On each small square, on the wrong side, draw one line diagonally from one corner to the other. Use a ruler to make sure the lines are straight and in the center.

Step 3: Align one small square, right sides together (RST), with the top and right edges of the large square. Align a second small square, RST, with the bottom and left edges of the large square. The drawn diagonal lines make one continuous line where the center points overlap.

Step 4: Either draw another line on each side of the center diagonal line at a ¼” and stitch right on top of each of these lines OR use a ¼” foot and sew a quarter inch on either side of the line.

Step 5: Press to set the seams.

Step 6: Cut on the center line creating two equal units.

Step 7: On both units, lay the two small triangles back to double check size is correct. Press seams open.


Step 8: On both units, with RST, line up a small square with the bottom right corner. The diagonal line runs from the center to the bottom right corner.

Step 9: As in Step 4, either draw additional lines ¼” from the center line on both sides and stitch on top those lines or use a ¼” foot and sew ¼” on either side of the drawn line.

Step 10: Press to set seams.

Step 11: Cut on the center line on both units.

Step 12: Press seams to set. Lay small triangles back and turn right side down to press seams open.

Step 13: Trim to 3 ½” x 6 ½”. Leave ¼” at the top of the “goose”/triangle. The edges of the triangle run to the bottom corner on both sides. There will be little to nothing to trim. Mostly you are just trimming off the little seam tags on the ends.

You now have four complete and identical flying geese.


Piece the Remaining Flying Geese

Repeat Steps 1-13 Above: With each of the eleven remaining 7 ¼” colored squares and the remaining 3 7/8” background squares, repeats steps 1-13 to make 8 total flying geese with each of the 6 fat quarter colors.

Set them aside until April 23rd, 2019 when we piece all our blocks and the quilt top! Woot!


So, what did you think? Will you make them again?

If you enjoyed making these flying geese, you might want to check out the Flock Together Quilt Pattern here. It goes quickly and uses this same method.


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