Flying Geese in an array of orange prints dart across a dark autumnal sky in this vintage quilt (dated 1830-1860).
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Collector: Miriam Kujac


  • 3-3⁄4 yards black print (setting squares, sashing, setting and corner triangles, border, binding)
  • 2 yards solid orange (sashing)
  • 2 yards total assorted prints in red, brown, blue, pink, black, green, gray, and tan (Flying Geese units)
  • 3-7⁄8 yards backing fabric
  • 68×81" quilt batting

Finished quilt: 61-1⁄2 ×74-1⁄4"

Quantities specified for 44/45"-wide, 100% cotton fabrics. Measurements include a 1⁄4" seam allowance. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the order that follows.

From black print, cut:

  • 7--5-1⁄2 ×42" strips for border
  • 7--2-1⁄2 ×42" binding strips
  • 5--9-3⁄4" squares, cutting each diagonally twice in an X for 20 large setting triangles total (you'll use 18)
  • 31--6-1⁄2" setting squares
  • 4--5-1⁄2" squares, cutting each diagonally twice in an X for 16 small setting triangles total (you'll use 14)
  • 12--3-1⁄2" sashing squares
  • 2--3" squares, cutting each in half diagonally for 4 corner triangles total

From solid orange, cut:

  • 20--3-1⁄2" sashing squares
  • 320--2×3-1⁄2" rectangles

From assorted prints, cut:

  • 640--2" squares

Assemble Sashing Units

1.    For accurate sewing lines, use a quilter's pencil to mark a diagonal line on wrong side of each assorted print 2" square. (To prevent your fabric from stretching as you draw the lines, place 220-grit sandpaper under the squares.)

2.    Align a marked assorted print 2" square with one end of a solid orange 2×3-1⁄2" rectangle (Diagram 1; note placement of marked line). Stitch on marked line; trim excess fabric, leaving a 1⁄4" seam allowance. Press attached triangle open.


3.    In same manner, align a second assorted print 2" square with opposite end of solid orange 2×3-1⁄2" rectangle (Diagram 1, again noting placement of marked line). Stitch on marked line; trim and press as before to make a Flying Geese unit. The Flying Geese unit should be 2×3-1⁄2" including seam allowances.

4.    Repeat steps 2 and 3 to make 320 Flying Geese units total.

5.    Referring to Diagram 2 for placement, sew together four Flying Geese units to make a sashing unit. Press seams in one direction. The sashing unit should be 3-1⁄2 ×6-1⁄2" including seam allowances. Repeat to make 80 sashing units total.


Assemble Quilt Center

1.    Referring to Quilt Assembly Diagram and photograph, lay out 31 black print 6-1⁄2" setting squares, 80 sashing units, 18 black print large setting triangles, 14 black print small setting triangles, 12 black print 3-1⁄2" sashing squares, and 20 solid orange 3-1⁄2" sashing squares in diagonal rows.


2.    Sew together pieces in each row. Press seams toward squares and setting triangles. Then join rows. Press seams in one direction.

3.    Add four black print corner triangles to complete quilt center. Press seams toward corner triangles. The quilt center should be 51-1⁄2 ×64-1⁄4" including seam allowances.

Add Border

1.    Cut and piece black print 5-1⁄2 ×42" strips to make:

  • 2--5-1⁄2 ×74-1⁄4" border strips
  • 2--5-1⁄2 ×51-1⁄2" border strips

2.    Sew short black print border strips to short edges of quilt center. Then add long black print border strips to long edges to complete quilt top. Press all seams toward border.

Finish Quilt

1.    Layer quilt top, batting, and backing.

2.    Quilt as desired. The quilter of this antique piece hand-quilted a line 1⁄4" inside each piece in the sashing, an X through each sashing square, and parallel lines across the black print squares, setting triangles, and border.

3.    Use black print binding strips to bind quilt.