Welcome to the sixth week, and the sixth project, of How to Quilt: A Beginner’s Guide. This week we’re learning how to make a Flying Geese quilt block. From there, we’ll turn the block into Flying Geese Zipper Pouch.
To get started, we’ve made a playlist of uquilt videos that show you pre-sewing skills and the no-waste flying geese method. Take a moment to watch and review. Be sure to refer to your sewing machine’s manual for specific threading and setup guidance.
Be sure to catch the How to Make No-Waste Flying Geese video to learn how to make four Flying Geese at the same time.
Now that we’re caught up on our skills, let’s make a Flying Geese Zipper Pouch!
Flying Geese Zipper Pouch
1/4 yard of Dark Value/Lining fabric
Fat 1/8 yard (9″ x 20″) of Focal/Medium Value fabric
1/8 yard of Light Value fabric
9″ or 14″ zipper in coordinating color
From the dark value fabric, cut:
(8) 2 7/8″ x 2 7/8″
(2) 8 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ (for the lining)
From the medium value fabric, cut:
(2) 4 1/2″ x 4 1/2″
From the light value fabric, cut:
(2) 5 1/4″ x 5 1/4″
(8) 2 1/2″ x 2 1/2″
No-Waste Flying Geese Assembly
Mark the wrong side of the dark value 2 7/8″ squares in half diagonally once. The marked squares are the “Sky” fabric.
Lay a marked square over the corner of the light value 5 1/4″ square right sides together with the marked line pointing towards the center. The light value squares are the “Geese” fabric.
Repeat with another marked square in the diagonally opposite corner. The smaller squares will overlap in the center.
Sew a quarter inch from either side of the marked line as shown below. Make 2.
Cut apart on the marked center line, as shown above, and press towards the dark triangles. Repeat to make four units that look somewhat like a fox head. Next, lay a marked square over the corner of the light triangle right sides together. Sew a quarter inch from either side of the marked line as shown below. Repeat with the remaining units.
Cut apart on the marked line and press towards the dark triangles to make 8 Flying Geese. Flying Geese measure 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ unfinished.
Sawtooth Star Block Assembly
Lay a Flying Geese unit over the medium value 4 1/2″ square, right sides together, with the center point of the Geese fabric against the side of the 4 1/2″ square. Sew a quarter inch seam, and press towards the center square. Repeat on the other side to make the center row. Row measures 4 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ unfinished, make 2.
Lay a light value 2 1/2″ square on a Flying Geese unit, right sides together. Sew a quarter inch seam and press towards the 2 1/2″ square. Repeat on the other side to make an outer row. Row measures 2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ unfinished, make 4.
Lay out an outer row, center row, and another outer row. Sew the rows together into a Sawtooth Star block as shown below. Block measures 8 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ unfinished, make 2.
Zipper Pouch Assembly
Place a Sawtooth Star block on your workspace, right side up. Lay the zipper over the top edge of the block, right sides together. Lay a dark value 8 1/2″ lining square over the zipper, right side down. Make all the layers even (from the pull end of the zipper, allow the excess to hang out) and clip or pin to secure.
Install a zipper foot onto your sewing machine so the needle comes down on the left side of the foot. (A standard foot may work if you do not have a zipper foot, but test first to ensure success.) Bring the layered sandwich you just secured to the machine and sew a quarter inch seam. Part way through the seam, stop with the needle down, raise the presser foot, and unzip the zipper to where you’ve already sewn. This allows you to sew without the foot diverting around the zipper pull.
Open up the layers and push them all to one side (wrong sides together). Rezip. Layer a Sawtooth Star block, the other side of the zipper, and a lining the same as before and secure. Sew a quarter inch seam, again moving the zipper pull part of the way through sewing the seam. Once sewn, trim the excess zipper even to the sides of the fabric pieces with a pair of sturdy paper scissors.
Unzip the zipper part of the way. (You do not want to miss this step!)
Carefully fold the two star blocks to face each other right sides together, and the lining square right sides together, with the zipper in the center. Secure with pins or clips, and make sure to secure the zipper excess pointed towards the lining.
You can reinstall your standard foot at this step. Start sewing a quarter inch seam allowance at the bottom of the lining square an inch or two from the corner so there’s a gap at the bottom for turning later. Sew around the bag, making sure to maintain the direction of the zipper excess. Once you reach the bottom of the lining again, stop about four inches from where you started to leave room to turn the bag out.
Once sewn, reach through the opening at the bottom of the lining and turn the bag right sides out. Reach through the partially opened zipper to turn the Sawtooth Star blocks right sides out. Once turned, tuck in the seam allowance of the opening and press a crease. Sew the opening closed. Push the lining back into the bag and enjoy your new Flying Geese Zipper Pouch!
Want more practice with Flying Geese Blocks?
Check out the Flying Home quilt made from Half Yard pre-cuts, a free pattern from AQSblog.
Ready to join a community of beginners, share your progress and get exclusives?
Join the How To Quilt AQS Facebook group. We can’t wait to see what you make!