Butterfly Star Quilt – Free Pattern

Butterfly star quilt

Butterfly star quilt

For the Butterfly Star quilt my aim was to find a design where the butterflies and stars appeared to be floating randomly within the quilt.  In order to achieve this I made the butterflies and stars off centre so that when I rotated the blocks they would look like random placements rather than straight lines.  Both of the blocks are very easy to make so this quilt goes together really quickly.  I have used sixteen blocks which are all 12″ square finished size.  The quilt measures 52″ square, using 2 yards of the blue sky background fabric, 3/4 yard of green star and 1/2 yard of lilac floral fabric.

Completed quilt blocks

Completed quilt blocks

Cutting requirements for the butterfly star quilt

4.1/2″ squares:  sixteen blue

4.7/8″ squares:  eight blue, eight lilac

8.1/2″ by 4.1/2″ rectangles:  eight blue

12.1/2″ by 4.1/2″ rectangles:  eight blue

3.1/2″ squares:  eight green, thirty two blue

3.7/8″ squares:  sixteen green, sixteen blue

9.1/2″ by 3.1/2″ rectangles:  eight blue

12.1/2″ by 3.1/2″ rectangles:  eight blue

For the border you will need to cut five 2.1/2″ lengths of green star fabric across the width of fabric.

Half square triangle units

Half square triangle units

Make the half square triangle units.

Use both the 3.7/8″ and 4.7/8″ squares to make half square triangle units.  Place either a lilac or a green square right sides together with a blue square and mark a line along the diagonal.  Sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line and cut along the line.

This will produce two half square triangle units which are either 3.1/2″ or 4.1/2″ square.   Press the seam allowances towards the darker fabric and trim the two corners where the triangle tips stick out.

Butterfly block layout

Butterfly block layout

Make the butterfly quilt block

Lay two lilac/blue half square triangles and two 4.1/2″ blue squares diagonally opposite each other.

Lay an 8.1/2″ blue rectangle down the right hand side of the four patch unit, with a 12.1/2″ blue rectangle across the bottom.  Sew the squares and half square triangles together in pairs and then sew the pairs together.  Add the rectangle to the right and then sew the 12.1/2″ rectangle across the bottom.

The block measures 12.1/2″ square at this stage and you need to make eight of them.

Star block layout

Star block layout

Make the star quilt block

Lay the nine pieces of the star in three rows of three.  Place a green star square in the middle with a green/blue half square triangle on each edge of the central square.  Lay these so that the triangles form the points of the star.  Place a 3.1/2″ blue square in each corner of this nine patch section.

Sew the three squares together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.  Now add a 3.1/2″ by 9.1/2″ blue rectangle on the right hand side and then a 3.1/2″ by 12.1/2″ blue rectangle across the bottom of the block.

At this stage the block also measures 12.1/2″ square and you also need to make eight of them.

Rows one and two

Rows one and two

Assemble the butterfly star quilt

There are many different ways of arranging these blocks.  I have chosen to alternate the butterflies and stars across the rows and down the columns, rotating them to give the random placement effect.

In row one begin with a butterfly placed top right of the block.  Follow this with a star placed bottom right, a butterfly placed top left and a star also placed top left.

For row two you need to place a star top left, a butterfly placed top right, a star placed bottom right and a butterfly placed top right.

Rows three and four

Rows three and four

In row three I have begun with a butterfly placed top right, a star placed top right, followed by a butterfly placed bottom right and a star placed placed top left.

For row four begin with a star placed top left followed by a butterfly placed bottom left, a star placed top left and a butterfly placed top right.

Sew the blocks together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.

Green stars for the border

Green stars for the border

Add the quilt border

I have used 2.1/2″ strips of the green star fabric for the border.  You’ll need two lengths of 48.1/2″ for the top and bottom with a 52.1/2″ length for each side.

That completes the butterfly star quilt top.  It is now ready for layering, quilting and binding.  Full details of these steps can be found in the beginning quilter section.

Here’s the video:



Himley Hall

Himley Hall

And I have also been exploring this week.  I visited (accidentally) Himley Hall and spent a wonderful morning touring the exhibitions and the parkland.  You can read about it here or just click on the photo.

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  1. elizacross2003 says:

    My message has also disappeared , So Belated happy Birthday, I hope you had a Great Day. I celebrated Mothers Day with my 2 sons son-in-law and Grandson, so surrounded by “my Boys who spoilt me on a beautiful sunny day. ! love the butterfly quilt and delightful photos.

    • Hi Eliza. Your comment and my reply are somewhere down below here. It did get through the first time – but it’s always nice to hear from you. Glad you had such a lovely Monthers Day.

  2. Sandra Barnett says:

    Oh Rose,
    Happy Birthday and Happy Mother’s Day. Love the pattern. I am finally getting back into quilting among my other things that I am trying to do.
    Love when I go on your adventures also. The grandgirls were up on Friday so I did not get a chance to see your email, until today. We went to an Indian PowWow that was near us but the day was a rainy drippy mess. Did not stay for the dancing. Walked around at some of the vendors but a lot got discussed with the horrible weather for the 2 days and they left. I don’t blame them. It was cold and raw.
    Hope you had a good celebration and it is fun to turn 64 been there done that already.
    Good people are born in May I am at the end of the month.
    Have a great weekend and Happy Quilting

    • Thanks, Sandra. Sorry to hear that your time with the granddaughters was spoiled by the weather. How disappointing for the people involved in the PowWow as well. Happy Birthday for the end of the month – May is a lovely month, isn’t it!

  3. Margaret says:

    Belated HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROSE! Hope you got spoilt rotten by friends and family and had a wonderfull day! Thanks for all the wonderful ideas you throw at us xx

  4. Carole Manuel says:

    Have a very happy birthday Rose. And thanks for all the inspiration and pleasure you’ve given us.

  5. Hi Rose
    My original comment seemed to have disappeared.
    So once again Rose quilting keeps you young.
    Happy Birthday to Rose a person who is generous giving
    us lovely patterns like this week’s one.
    It does look as if the stars and butterflies are floating.
    Spoil yourself with some nice treats.
    Thank you.

    • Hi Mary. My apologies – I don’t know why your comment would have disappeared. Thanks for your birthday wishes. I’m glad you feel that I achieved the floating effect on the quilt.

  6. Beautiful quilt Rose, and Happy Birthday! May 64 be the best year yet 🙂

  7. Happy Birthday! Like the quilt. Heard golfer Sir Nick Faldo mention on TV that Mother’s Day in the UK is in March. Well, in the USA Mother’s Day is on the 13th of May so Happy Mother’s Day from me to you. Incidentally, I was vacationing in Hawaii the year you were born.

    • Hi Claire. Thanks for the birthday and Mother’s Day wishes. You’re right – our mother’s day was back in March. I think one of them is called Mother’s Day and the other is called Mothering Sunday. I’m assuming that you didn’t have any problems with volcanoes when you were in Hawaii – another beautiful place that I’d like to visit.

  8. Reberta says:

    A very happy birthday to you, Rose, and many more to come.

  9. Ruth Chapman says:

    Best wishes for happy & wonderful birthday.
    Lovely quilt today!!

  10. Arleen Salmon says:

    May you have a most enjoyable birthday, Rose, and year to come! Today (May 11th) is my daughter’s birthday. People like you and her add a sparkle to this world.

  11. Betty Randolph says:

    Happy Birthday…………(Oh, I’m 20 years older than you!! HA HA) Hope your sale goes well, your travels are many and you have a great celebration.

    • Hi Betty. I can’t believe that you’re 20 years older than me given how much you seem to fit in to each day. I hope that I’m as active as you are in 20 years’ time!

  12. Christine Southgate says:

    Have a wonderful birthday Rose & thank you for another lovely quilt pattern.

  13. Carol Tambourine says:

    Wishing you a very happy birthday tomorrow and a year of travel and joy.