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Buckeye Beauty Quilt Block Pattern
From our Free Quilt Block Patterns Library

Buckeye Beauty quilt block tutorial

Skill Level: Beginner

Grid: 2x2

The Buckeye Beauty quilt block is super fast and easy--just two half square triangles and two four patches and you're good to go!

Perfect for scrappy quilts because each block takes so little fabric. As always, scrap quilts are all about value. Keep your lights light and your darks dark to maintain the design.

For such a small block with so few pieces, it's hard to believe there are many other names, but here they are:

Double Four Patch
Gay Scrap Quilt
Give This One a Name
Going to Chicago
Hour Glass

Jacob's Ladder
New Four Patch
Northern Lights

Railroad Crossing
World's Fair
World's Fair

Alternate layout of the patches

When the units are flip-flopped they create the design (right) which goes by the name 'Hour Glass' or 'Jewel Box', as well as the other names listed just above. This version of the block looks much more like a 'traditional' Jacob's Ladder quilt block. What do you think?

Quilting instructions are included on this page for blocks in 5 different sizes. Variations on the design are included at the end of this page.

Now let's start piecing this beauty!

Construction Instructions

Buckeye Beauty quilt block design

Block Size: 6"(6-1/2" unfinished)

Grid size: 3"

All seam allowances (SA) are 1/4".

When you are instructed to press, first press the pieced unit flat to set the seam. Then open the patches, pressing from the front. Seam allowances are pressed to the darker fabric unless otherwise noted.

Click here for cutting instructions for additional block sizes.

Step 1: Cutting

The squares for the half square triangles (marked with **) are based on using the Quick Piecing technique. I like to use over-sized squares, stitch the unit and then trim to an exact size. The number in () is the actual size that I cut.



One 3-7/8"(4-1/8") square**
One 2" x 8-1/2"

One 3-7/8"(4-1/8") square**
One 2" x 8-1/2"

And these are the cut patches.

Cut patches for the Buckeye Beauty quilt block

Step 2: Assemble the units

Half Square Triangles

Make 2

Using the Quick Piece technique for making half square triangle, draw a diagonal line on the back of one of your squares. I used a chalk pencil on this darker fabric.

Layer the light and dark square with RST and stitch a 1/4" from each side of the drawn line.

Stitch on both sides of the line

The red arrow points to my anchor cloth.

Cut on the line to create two HST units.


If you started with over-sized patches as in this lesson, trim each to 3-1/2" x 3-1/2".

Click here if you need more detailed information on the Quick Piecing technique used above.

Four Patches

Make 2

Layer the light and dark strip with RST and stitch along the long edge to create a piece that measures 3-1/2" x 8-1/2".

Straighten one of the short edges with your rotary cutter and cut this strip set into four 2" wide segments.

Alternate the segments as shown below.

Alternate light and dark fabrics

Stitch two pairs of segments together. The four patches measure 3-1/2" square.

Step 3: Assemble the Buckeye Beauty Quilt Block

Lay out the units. Even though this is a simple quilt block, it is incredibly easy to flip the triangle squares. Unfortunately, we quilters never seem to notice until we've stitched a whole pile and are at the ironing board to press. ARGGGHHHH!!!!

Lay out the patches

Stitch the patches into rows. You can press in either direction, just be consistent so that your seams will nest for ease in matching the seams.

Stitch into rows

Sew the two rows into a block. I twirled the seam allowance to reduce bulk in the center of the block. (See the red circles in the photo below.)

Twirl the seam allowances to distribute bulk

Let's take a closer look at the twirled seam allowance (circled in red below) on our Buckeye Beauty.

You'll need to pick out a couple of the stitches holding the seam together starting at the edge of the seam up to the stitching that crosses it. (the red arrows point to where I left the threads.) Then you are able to maneuver it into position.

Twirl the seam allowances to distribute bulk

Instead of having the bulk of the seam all pressed to one side, it is now spread around the joined seam in a clockwise fashion.  The green arrows show this rotation on this block.

Note that twirling the seam creates a little four patch on the back of the block.

This is your finished Buckeye Beauty quilt block. Pretty cute!

The finished four patch version of the Buckeye Beauty quilt block

Looking for more design opportunity?

'Like the design, but need a bit more design opportunity within the block?

Then click here to go to our nine patch version of the Jacob's Ladder quilt block. It looks like two Buckeye Beauty's melded together.

Need help deciding how to lay out your finished blocks. Look to our Jacob's Ladder (alias Buckeye Beauty) pattern page for inspiration.

Common Variations

Clustering the Buckeye Beauty quilt block in groups of four allows for more design opportunities as we can see in the examples below.

New Double Four Patch quilt block design

New Double Four Patch

The result of four blocks set together. Light and dark is reversed from our tutorial.

Buckeye Beautiful quilt block design

Buckeye Beautiful

Another fabric is added for the triangle patches.

State House quilt block design

State House

Two different fabrics used for the triangle squares.

Also know as: Double Four Patch and New Four Patch

Sunny Lanes quilt block design

Sunny Lanes

In this four fabric block, the position of the units within the block are swapped.

The design is created by careful placement of the dark HST fabric to create the strong diagonal element.

Cutting Chart for Other Block Sizes

If you'd like to over-size your half square triangle patches, they are marked with a **.

Finished Block Size
Light11-1/4” x 5-1/2”1-1/2” x 6-1/2”1-3/4” x 7-1/2”2-1/4” x 9-1/2”
Dark11-1/4” x 5-1/2”1-1/2” x 6-1/2”1-3/4” x 7-1/2”2-1/4” x 9-1/2”
Trim HST to...2”2-1/2”3”4”
Cut the four patch strip set into segments this wide 1-1/4” 1-1/2” 1-3/4” 2-1/4”
Grid Size1-1/2”2”2-1/2”3-1/2”

Same name, different block...

Rockingham's Beauty quilt block design

—A completely different look from the Buckeye Beauty quilt block in our tutorial.

This one is also known as the Rockingham's Beauty.

It's a real humdinger!

A Bevy of Beauties!

They say 'Beauty is in the eye of the beholder'!

Behold all the block patterns in our Free Quilt Block Pattern Library to find blocks for your next beautiful quilt!

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