Quilting Blog

Simple Spinning Star Quilt Block Tutorial

Create the illusion that the spinning star block is actually spinning! All it takes is a thoughtful combination of quarter-square and half-square triangles.

Sew several spinning star blocks in coordinating fabrics to make a quilt, or mix and match this block with others like the Ohio Star quilt block or friendship star block for a neat sampler quilt!

Make a spinning star quilt block with this easy tutorial

Spinning Star Quilt Block

Block size

12½” square unfinished, 12″ square finished

Notes: Use a scant ¼” seam. I used Luna Lounge fabric by Carol Van Zandt for Andover.

Download a FREE 5-page printable PDF of the full pattern here!

Fabric cutting

Spinning Star quilt block tutorial

Background fabric:

  • Cut four 4½” squares for the corners
  • Cut one 5¼” square, then cut it diagonally twice to make four triangles

Center fabric:

  • Cut one 4½” square

Smaller print fabric:

  • Cut two 3-7/8″ squares, then cut each in half diagonally once to make four total triangles

Larger print fabric:

  • Cut two 4-7/8″ squares, then cut each in half diagonally once to make four total triangles

Block assembly

Step 1:

Piecing small quarter-square triangles

Piece the small quarter-square triangles as pictured. The background fabric should face up like a roof on a house. Align the other small triangle on the left side, so the short sides of both triangles touch. Stitch together with right sides facing, then press the seam toward the darker fabric.

Step 2:

Pair each set of quarter-square triangles

Pair each set you just made with a half-square triangle of the larger printed fabric, so the long sides of each large triangle touch. Stitch with rights sides together, and press the seam toward the black.

Four quarter-half-square triangle units.

 You’ve already finished the trickiest part of this block! Wasn’t that easy? Here are your four quarter-half-square triangle units.

Step 3:

Trim the dog ears

Trim off the dog ears from each unit. I like to use a rotary cutter for this, to make a few quick and easy cuts.

Step 4:

Align units in three rows and two columns

Align your units in three rows and three columns as pictured. The single 4½” square goes in the center, and the matching 4½” background squares go in the corners. Make sure each of the pieced units has the background triangle pointing out toward the border.

Step 5:

Sew together the three units in each row

 Sew together the three units in each row, and press the seams out toward the background fabric. Then, pin the rows together and stitch, making sure the seams align at each row. I like to press the final two seams open to eliminate excess bulk.

Spinning Star quilt block tutorial

Want to save this for later? Download a FREE 5-page printable PDF of this tutorial!

Lily and Loom Madison Park Fabric

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in July 2015 and was updated in February 2018.



love this site .
Very rewarding
Great directions


what would be super helpful to me as a beginner, is if you would list how many yards of each color I would need. Its confusing when your starting.

Betty Marcheschi

I can’t wait to begin. I haven’t tried stars and have felt intimidated just because it looks difficult. Now I know i can do this.
Thank you.
Betty Marcheschi


How timely this post is! I just messed up cutting some fabric for a quilt I’m working on; I think I can use those pieces for this block! I just need to make the same “mistake” with a coordinating piece of fabric :o) Thank you!


What is wrong with your website?? Why can’t I add things to favorites. I’ve tried and tried.


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