Carpenters wheel quilt block

Carpenters wheel quilt block

The carpenters wheel quilt block is probably one of my favourite blocks.  I don’t really know why I haven’t written a tutorial on it before now.  I have made it here as a 16″ block using two colours and a white background.

Cutting requirements

2.1/2″ squares:  four green, twelve white

2.7/8″ squares:  eight each in green and white, eight each in pink and white, eight each in pink and green.

You can see the quilt that I made using this block with very different colours here.

Making the carpenters wheel quilt block

Make half square triangle units

Make half square triangle units

Carpenters wheel quilt block layout

Carpenters wheel quilt block layout

Use the 2.7/8″ squares in the colour combinations listed above to make half square triangles.  Place two squares 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.

Sew the patchwork pieces together in eight rows of eight following the layout shown.


First four rows of the carpenters wheel quilt block

First four rows of the carpenters wheel quilt block

Rows five to eight of the carpenters wheel quilt block

Rows five to eight of the carpenters wheel quilt block

I have shown the first four rows of the block on the left with the squares sewn together across the rows.  I think that this should be more easy for you to follow.  The second four rows are shown on the right.  I found that I really had to concentrate to get the half square triangles facing the correct way.  Broadly the left hand and right hand sides of the block are mirror images.

Try and look for the larger patterns, such as the white squares made with four white triangles to help you with the placement.

Once you are happy with the placement of the patchwork pieces, sew them together across the rows and then sew the rows together to complete the carpenters wheel quilt block.

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  1. Willie Combos says:

    Hi Rose
    I’m so excited to get started on the 32” Carpenter Wheel. It will be the center of a Cal King bed cover. Finally my search is over this block is perfect.

  2. Carolyn Williamson says:

    I need a pattern for Carpenter Star 101 inches square. Do you know or have a pattern

  3. Absolutely love this pattern! Thanks so much for providing it to others!!!

  4. Jill Cook says:

    I’d like the block to be more like forty inches so it can be a whole baby quilt. Or maybe thirty inches. Thank you.

  5. Cathy Henderson says:

    I love this block! My question is, you say it’s 16″, is that finished?

  6. Trish Tarbuck says:

    Hi Rose
    Really liked the cactus pattern today but I really want to try the carpenters wheel.Your instructions are for a 16 inch block but I only need a 12 inch block.Please can you advise re the cutting instructions.Edgbaston reservoir looked lovely. Thanks Trish

    • Hi Trish. In order to make this as a 12″ block you’d need to have 1.1/2″ finished size squares. For that you’d need to begin with 2″ squares for the plain squares and 2.3/8″ squares for the half square triangles. Good luck.

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