No Waste Flying Geese Tutorial

Make four no waste flying geese at a time. Learn the technique and see a size chart. Easy enough for beginners!

four no waste flying geese rectangle units

There are times when you want to make more than one flying geese at a time. You want to make multiple geese at a time!

This method results in four geese that do not need to be trimmed to size. You only need to trim off the 'wing tips' (you'll see this in the instructions below).

The Eight Pointed Star quilt block is a prime example of when you  might want to make flying geese four at a time (there will be a link to this block at the end of this tutorial).

There are many quilting rulers available on the market for purchase to make more than one flying geese at a time. However, if you are on a budget buying a ruler may not be feasible.

Flying Geese Math

But, if you know the math, a specific ruler may be unnecessary.

Using this method requires 5 squares in two different sizes - 1 large square and 4 smaller squares - to make four flying geese rectangle units.

The math is...

Large Square Size: Add 1 1/4 inches to the longer side of the finished size of your flying geese unit

Smaller Squares Size: Add 7/8 inch to the shorter side of the finished size of your flying geese unit

No Waste Flying Geese Chart

Here's the math, already done!


Finished Geese Size (inches)

Unfinished Large Square Size (inches)

Cut 1

Unfinished Small Square Size (inches)

Cut 4

2 x 4

2 1/2 x 5

5 1/4 x 5 1/4

6 1/4 x 6 1/4

2 7/8 x 2 7/8

3 3/8 x 3 3/8

3 x 6

3 1/2 x 7

7 1/4 x 7 1/4

8 1/4 x 8 1/4

3 7/8 x 3 7/8

4 3/8 x 4 3/8

4 x 8

4 1/2 x 9

9 1/4 x 9 1/4

10 1/4 x 10 1/4

4 7/8 x 4 7/8

5 3/8 x 5 3/8

5 x 10

5 1/2 x 11

6 x 12

11 1/4 x 11 1/4

12 1/4 x 12 1/4

13 1/4 x 13 1/4

5 7/8 x 5 7/8

6 3/8 x 6 3/8

6 7/8 x 6 7/8

Start by cutting strips the same width as the size of the unfinished squares. Then, subcut to the size of the unfinished squares.

How to Make Flying Geese Instructions

Step 1a Cut Squares and Rectangle

According to the measurement chart above...

Cut 1 square from Fabric A (solid brown) and 4 squares from Fabric B (green print).

Step 1b Mark Small Squares

On the wrong side of the small squares, draw a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner.

Step 1 Cut 1 large and 4 small squares to make no waste flying geese.

Step 2 Place the large square right side up and on point (oriented like a diamond shape) onto a flat surface. Your cutting mat is perfect.

Place 1 small square, right side down, in the top corner of the large square with the diagonal line running from the top corner to the center of the large square. Pin the smaller square to the larger one so it won't shift when you sew it.

Place a second small square, right side down, in the bottom corner of the large square with the diagonal line running from the bottom corner to the center of the large square. Pin.

The overlap of the small squares in the center is fine. You want this. The diagonal lines should line up with one another.

Step 2 No waste flying geese: Place large square right side up; small square, right side down in opposite corners of the large square. Pin.

Step 3 Stitch a seam 1/4 inch from and on both sides of the drawn line.

Step 3 Stitch a seam 1/4 inch from and on both sides of the drawn line.

Step 4 Place the unit, with large square on bottom, onto your cutting mat.

Place a quilting ruler on the drawn line. Use a rotary cutter and cut on the line, splitting the unit into two halves and leaving a 1/4 inch seam on both halves.

(Can you see how the 4 no waste flying geese units will be made?) :-)

Continue on...

Step 4 No Waste Flying Geese: Use a ruler and rotary cutter to cut on the drawn line, splitting the unit in two.

Step 5 Flip the small triangles right side up and press the seams toward the small triangles.

Step 5 No Waste Flying Geese: Flip the small triangles right side up and press the seams toward the small triangles.

Step 6 With the large triangle and small triangles units right side up, place 1 small square, right side down, in the remaining 'unused' corner of each of the large triangles. The drawn diagonal line should run from the unused' corner through the center of the large triangle and overlap where the two smaller triangles meet.

Pin the smaller squares to the larger triangles.

Stitch a seam 1/4 inch from and on both sides of the drawn line.

Step 6 No Waste Flying Geese: Repeat Steps 2 and 3.

Step 7 Place the units (with small squares on top) onto a rotary cutting mat. Orient the units if necessary to get a better angle to make the cut.

Place a quilting ruler on the stitched line. Use a rotary cutter to cut both units into two units, making four no waste flying geese units.

Step 7 No Waste Flying Geese: Place a quilting ruler on the stitched line. Use a rotary cutter to cut both units into two units, making four.

Step 8 Flip the triangles face up. Press the seam toward the small triangles.

You have a completed four no waste flying geese units!

Step 8 No Waste Flying Geese: Flip the triangles face up. Press the seam toward the small triangles.

Step 9 Trim the small wings from the units.

Step 9 No Waste Flying Geese: Trim the small wings from the units.

Finished! Told ya it would be easy! :-)

Now you can use your no waste flying geese units in quilt blocks! Try making an Eight Point Star quilt block pattern.


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