The prairie sunrise quilt block is one that I’ve often thought of making and I’m so glad now that I have actually made it! There are several different techniques needed to make it, which is probably why I put off making it, but each one is a simple technique that I have shown before in quilt block patterns.
I have made it here as a 20″ square and used only one colour plus white. I have seen it made in many colours before, but I feel that it is more dramatic with just the one colour.
Cutting requirements for the prairie sunrise quilt block
4.1/2″ by 8.1/2″ rectangles: four white
4.1/2″ squares: four white
4.7/8″ squares: two white, two pink
5.1/4″ squares: two white, two pink,
2.7/8″ squares: two white, two pink
4.7/8″ by 2.7/8″ rectangles: two white, two pink
Make half square triangle units
Make half square triangle units with the 5.1/4″, 4.7/8″ and 2.7/8″ squares. Place a pink and a white square with right sides together and mark a line along the diagonal. Sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line and cut along the line to produce two half square triangle units from each pair of squares. These will now be 4.7/8″, 4.1/2″ or 2.1/2″ squares: make sure to keep them separate from each other.
Make quarter square triangle units
Now take the half square triangle units made from 5.1/4″ squares and place two of them with right sides together. Make sure that the two seams are in line with each other, but that the colours are reversed – so the white triangle on top is over a pink triangle and the pink triangle on top is over a white triangle. Mark a line along the diagonal that crosses the seams. In the photo above that would be running from bottom left to top right. Now continue as for half square triangle units – sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line and cut along the line. These will now be 4.1/2″ squares.
Make half rectangle triangle units
Cut the small rectangles along one diagonal to make triangles. Place one pink and one white triangle together to re form a rectangle. Flip one triangle on to the other, and sew the seam along the diagonal. You need to offset these triangles against each other before you sew – have about 1/4″ of white sticking out beyond the pink at one end and 1/4″ of pink sticking out beyond the white at the other end.
Press and trim the two corners where the fabric sticks out.
Assembling the prairie sunrise quilt block
This is relatively straightforward once you’ve made all the parts. The outer frame is made with a large white rectangle in each corner, a white square to one side of the corner rectangle, and a pair of half rectangle triangles in the middle of each edge of the block. Place these so that the pink triangles combine to form a larger pink triangle pointing away from the middle.
The next frame uses the large half square and the quarter square triangle units. The half square triangles are placed in the corners of the frame, with the pink on the outside and the white on the inside. The quarter square triangle units are placed in the spaces between the half square triangles. Note that the ones at the top and bottom are placed horizontally like an egg time on its side while the two side ones are placed vertically like an upright egg timer.
Finally place the small half square triangles in the middle with the white always on the inside to form a white diamond in the middle of the block.
Sew the pairs of half rectangle triangles together. Sew the small half square triangles in the middle together to make a four patch. Now you can sew the patchwork pieces together across each row and then sew the rows together to complete the prairie sunrise quilt block.
Prairie sunrise quilt idea
As it’s such a big block, you don’t need many to make a quilt. For a quilt idea I have just shown two blocks sewn together with a border.
It makes a delightful design with those framed crosses in the middle.
Or you could just do as I have done and sew a border round just one block. I’ll use this as a table centre.
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Here’s the video: