Fall Leaf Quilt Block Tutorial

The fall leaf quilt block is easy for beginners - use HSTs to make it. See a size chart for three popular sizes. Maple leaf, move over. A new leaf is in town!

Fall Leaf Quilt BlockFall Leaf Quilt Block

Half Square Triangle Ruler

When making lots of half square triangles (HSTs) at once I prefer to use a half square triangle ruler to make them.

Using a HST ruler is a great time saver when making several blocks at a time. There are no lines to draw. And, you only have to trim one dog ear.

Follow the instructions given with your particular type of HST ruler.

Note: When the instructions below direct you to make HSTs for the block, a link refers you to a page with step by step instructions on making HSTs using a HST ruler.

Block Size Cutting Chart

8 inch fall leaf block

  • 6 (2 inch finished size, 2 1/2 inch unfinished) half square triangles
  • 3 (2 1/2 inch) print squares
  • 3 (2 1/2 inch) plain squares
  • 1 (5 inch) plain square
  • 1 (1 inch x 9 inch) strip

12 inch fall leaf block

  • 6 (3 inch finished size, 3 1/2 inch unfinished) half square triangles
  • 3 (3 1/2 inch) print squares
  • 3 (3 1/2 inch) plain squares
  • 1 (7 inch) plain square
  • 1 (1 inch x 11 inch) strip

16 inch fall leaf block

  • 6 (4 inch finished size, 4 1/2 inch unfinished) half square triangles
  • 3 (4 1/2 inch) print squares
  • 3 (4 1/2 inch) plain squares
  • 1 (9 inch) plain square
  • 1 (1 inch x 13 inch) strip

Block Fabric Designations

I used three different dark orange print fabrics and a dark gray fabric as the background to make this quilt block:

  • Fabric A – dark orange plus sign
  • Fabric B – dark orange star
  • Fabric C – dark orange hash marks
  • Fabric D – dark gray background

Fall Leaf Quilt Block Instructions

WOF= Width Of Fabric
Unless otherwise noted seams are 1/4 inch.
Refer to the Block Size Cutting Chart above for desired block size.

Step 1 Pair one strip each of Fabrics A and D, B and D, and C and D. Use a HST ruler to cut 2 half square triangles from each set for a total of 6. Stitch each set along its diagonal edge to make half square triangles.

Note: See these instructions to make half square triangles from strips or refer to these instructions to make half square triangles from squares.

Step 1 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: make half square triangles.

Step 2 From Fabrics A – C cut print squares. From fabrics the cut plain square.

Step 2 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: From Fabrics A – C cut print squares. From fabrics the cut plain square.

Step 3 From Fabrics C and D make the stem unit. See these detailed step by step instructions for making a stem for leaf quilt blocks. Press the seams away from center.

Step 3 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: make stem unit.

Step 4 Layout the patches and patch units for your fall leaf quilt block as shown in the picture below. With the exception of the stem unit press all seams open.

Step 4 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: layout block units.

Stitch the Patches and Units of Each Row Together

Step 5 Row 1: With right sides together, place the unit from Column 2 on top of the unit in Column 1. Align the edges. Stitch a seam along the right edge. Repeat for the units in Columns 3 and 4. Press seams open.

Step 5 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: stitch together Row 1.

Step 6 Row 2: Repeat Step 5.

Step 6 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: stitch together Row 2.

Step 7a Row 3: With right sides together, place the HST from Column 4 on top of the plain square in Column 3. Align the edges. Stitch a  seam along the right edge. Press seam open.

Step 7b Row 4: With right sides together, place the plain square from Column 4 on top of the HST in Column 3. Align the edges. Stitch a seam along the right edge. Press seam open.

Step 7 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: stitch together Rows 3 and 4.

Stitch the Rows Together

Step 8 Stitch Row 2 to Row 1: With right sides together, place Row 2 on top of Row 1. First match the middle seams. Then match the two outer seams. Stitch 1/4 inch seam. Press row seam open.

Step 8 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: stitch Row 2 to Row 1.

Step 9 Stitch Row 4 to Row 3, matching the center seam. This makes a four patch. Press seam open.

Step 9 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: Stitch Row 4 to Row 3.

Step 10 With right sides together stitch the four patch to the stem unit along the right side.
Press seam open.

Step 10 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: stitch the four patch to the stem unit along the right side.

Step 11 Stitch Row 3 to Row 2. Match the middle seams first. Then the outer seams. Press row seam open.

Step 11 Fall Leaf Quilt Block: Stitch Row 3 to Row 2.

Your fall leaf quilt block is finished! Personally, I think this it has a modern graphic appeal. For me it definitely rivals the Maple leaf quilt block. What do you think? :-)

Fall Leaf Quilt Pattern Idea

Here's what the fall leaf quilt block would look like in a quilt. An 8 inch block size is used alternating with 8 inch plain squares.

This quilt pattern is 88 x 88 inches (9 blocks per row by 9 rows). It uses 25 fall leaf quilt blocks and 20 plain squares. The alternating rows and borders are 8 inches wide.

Fall Leaf Quilt PatternFall Leaf Quilt

Give this fall leaf quilt pattern a try. It's very easy for beginners!  For a scrappy look make the blocks in multiple fall colors including yellow, wine, light orange, gold or a shade of mottled green.

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