Scrappy Summer Tutorial



This is a fabulous quilt for using up scraps…and since my inbox was full of questions about it I figured I’d post a quick free pattern.  I’ve seen many antique quilts in this pattern.  It’s been around forever…and is a great way to use up extra strips, squares, or extra pre-cuts you have lying around.  If you want a more detailed version of this pattern with yardage requirements, sizes, and color options, you can find a pattern in my shop.
For a 64″ x 80″ quilt you’ll need:
Print fabrics:  160 scrap 4 1/2″ squares
Solid or small print for the chain squares:  20 strips 2 1/2″ x the width of the fabric
White fabric:  20 strips 2 1/2″ x the width of the fabric


Step 1:  Sew each of the color 2 1/2″ strips to a white 2 1/2″ strip.  Chain piece to save time!!!  You should have 20 strip sets when your done.  Press seams towards the color fabric.
Step 2:  Cut each of the strip sets into 16 units 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″.   You can cut 2 or 3 strip sets at a time to speed things up!




Step 3:  Sew the units together to create four patch blocks.  Press the seam in either direction or open.  You should have 160 four patch blocks when your done.

making the 4 patch_thumb[3]

Step 4:   Layout 2 matching four patch blocks, and 2 scrap squares.  Sew them together as shown, the arrows indicate pressing direction (press the last seam in either direction or open).


Repeat until you have 80 blocks.
Step 5:  Assemble the blocks into 10 rows of 8 blocks each.  I didn’t worry about creating locking seams…a pin in the seam while you sew will help the seams match and everything should line up nice and neat!


Step 6:  Sew the blocks together to form the rows.  Press seams, alternating directions with each row.  Sew the rows together to finish the quilt top.


This quilt is a perfect Picnic Size.  More sizes and detailed material requirements can be found in a detailed pattern here.
Now go sort through your scraps…and happy summer quilting!

64 Responses to Scrappy Summer Tutorial

  1. Emily June 12, 2013 at 8:45 pm #

    I've got a ton of 4" i-spy fabrics that this would be perfect for. Should I cut my strips to 2" or 2 1/4"? Thanks!

  2. allison June 12, 2013 at 8:48 pm #

    Cut them to 2 1/4" Emily! With the 4" squares that will leave you with a 7 1/2" unfinished block.

  3. Melia Mae Quilting June 12, 2013 at 8:50 pm #

    I love this quilt and pattern. I think I will have to try this for a quilt for my husband! It would be perfect for him! Thanks for doing this.

  4. Denise Briese June 12, 2013 at 9:17 pm #

    Wow Allison Thanks this is perfect for beginners..:0) I appreciate your work so very much.

  5. Sally Evans June 12, 2013 at 9:41 pm #

    Ooh that's gorgeous. My sister just gave me loads of offcuts from vintage sheets (she loves thrifting). I think I now know what to do with them! Yay!

  6. Lynne Tilley June 12, 2013 at 11:04 pm #

    This looks like an easy fun project for all those little scraps I've accumulated! It will go into my "to-do" folder. Thanks for the tutorial! Great job.

  7. Lesley June 12, 2013 at 11:40 pm #

    Your quilt is so gorgeous! So fresh and summery. Thanks so much for the instructions!

  8. JoAnn June 12, 2013 at 11:47 pm #

    Thanks for the lovely instructions!

  9. kathy-o June 13, 2013 at 1:01 am #

    Perfect for scraps – you are always to generous to give freebies! Thanks!

  10. Sandy D June 13, 2013 at 1:27 am #

    Just printed the tutorial.Thanks for a great idea for my scraps.

  11. Trudie June 13, 2013 at 1:28 am #

    What a great quilt. Thanks for sharing the tutorial.

  12. Di~ June 13, 2013 at 2:18 am #

    Thanks Allison. My cousin wants to do a quilt, has never done one…we are getting together in Island Park this month. I think I will make her a kit with my stash and we can go to town on this GREAT quilt!

  13. Adrianne June 13, 2013 at 2:30 am #

    Lovely quilt – thanks for sharing the pattern!

  14. ✾Jamie Lee Cooley✾ June 13, 2013 at 2:45 am #

    What a great quilt! Thanks for sharing your method for making it!

  15. Sew Nomadic June 13, 2013 at 3:46 am #

    Simple and beautiful. Love it!

  16. N. Maria June 13, 2013 at 4:25 am #

    What a DUH moment! You make it look so simple when my brain was making it so difficult. Thank you so very much for posting this fun and refreshing quilt pattern!

    • Martha June 28, 2022 at 4:11 am #

      I made this quilt from your tutorial several years ago! It turned out beautiful; gave it to my daughter who has used it many times!

  17. Grammasheri June 13, 2013 at 4:49 am #

    Thank you for the tutorial! Perfect for my own "summer of scraps" efforts this year!

  18. Jojoquilter June 13, 2013 at 7:07 am #

    I made a scrap quilt like this years ago, no set colors or print design & it is by far my favorite one out of all the many quilts I have made, just so cheery & colorful.

  19. Gwyn Cornelius Jensen June 13, 2013 at 7:21 am #

    Thank You so much for the pattern. ♥ your Blog.

  20. nerospost June 13, 2013 at 7:53 am #

    Hi! This is so beautiful and adorable quilt! Tahnk you for sharing the pattern! I love your colours and fabrics!

  21. Lynette (NZ) June 13, 2013 at 9:17 am #

    Lovely. Such happy summer colours

  22. Ellen June 13, 2013 at 9:36 am #

    Wow! Thanks you for the lovely pattern!

  23. Mercedes June 13, 2013 at 10:18 am #

    Thank you. It's a quilt very nice.
    Best regards♥

  24. Jocelyn June 13, 2013 at 10:36 am #

    Thank you! You're the greatest & we appreciate your tutorials & free patterns!!

  25. Carie June 13, 2013 at 10:57 am #

    What a fabulous way to use up the scraps – it would be so much fun to have the other quilts I've made represented in one, especially those I made to give away.

  26. Elisha June 13, 2013 at 11:18 am #

    I adore your blog and quilts that you make.. I love to have more time to make things, maybe in my next life? thank you for the instructions, i save them for my next life!

  27. Kelly O. June 13, 2013 at 12:11 pm #

    there is nothing you touch that I don't love! thank you for your generosity in sharing your patterns with us–free or otherwise!

  28. Angela Atkins June 13, 2013 at 12:16 pm #

    Thank you for posting the tutorial! I was just gonna try to figure it out and forgot about the strip piecing for the smaller squares. I am trying to work through my stash and scraps in the next few months before I start buying more. No where to put the more!

  29. Jean Burke June 13, 2013 at 12:48 pm #

    Thanks for your generosity! It's a wonderful pattern for me to work on downsizing my scraps this summer! Awesome……

  30. sandi s June 13, 2013 at 12:53 pm #

    Thank you for sharing your pattern, that is so sweet of you. It is a cute quilt and I love how scrappy it is!

  31. Lisa C June 13, 2013 at 1:34 pm #

    Thank you so much. I was looking for something scrappy to make for my son before he returns to school in the fall. This will be perfect.

  32. terrieannie June 13, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

    You are such a kind soul! As soon as I saw this quilt last week, I got started on my own. I like figuring out my own piecing layouts (math nerd), but I bet there are many who would pay $5 for a PDF version from you. I sure enjoy the freshness in all your work!!

  33. Francis Paul June 13, 2013 at 2:50 pm #


  34. ckeller219 June 13, 2013 at 3:31 pm #

    Thank you so much for sharing. Love your quilt and I can't wait to start cleaning out those scraps.

  35. Ali June 13, 2013 at 3:45 pm #

    Great tutorial for a lovely quilt. Thank you!

  36. Emarie21 June 13, 2013 at 5:10 pm #

    YES YES YES! I am in the middle of making my scrappy squares for my daughter's quilt. She wanted some large, uncut squares in it as well. Your timing couldn't have been more perfect with the pattern! We both thank you :)

  37. Kat June 13, 2013 at 6:35 pm #

    Thank you so much!

  38. the girlfriend gap June 14, 2013 at 4:33 am #

    I love it! thanks for the how to :)janita

  39. Tina June 14, 2013 at 11:39 am #

    Fantastic! Thanks for the tutorial!

  40. Brooke June 14, 2013 at 4:15 pm #

    I love it! It is so cheery. Plus, there's nothing better than using up scraps and loving the finished product.

  41. Cindy June 15, 2013 at 10:05 pm #

    I just love this!! Thanks so much for sharing- a definite do!!!!:)

  42. Judith Blinkenberg June 19, 2013 at 3:08 am #

    I remember the first time I started following you. You had some free patterns and here you are again sharing with us. You are and will always be my favorite blog. I look forward to your fabric and even more patterns than I now have, why because of you! Thank you for the pattern and thank you for being such a genuine, wonderful person!!

  43. allison June 20, 2013 at 4:47 am #

    Your too sweet Judith!! This made my night. :) Now come be my neighbor! ;) -Al

  44. Angela @ Cottage Magpie July 15, 2013 at 11:10 pm #

    I was wondering — what do you use to make the little drawings showing how the blocks go together? I sometimes just make quilts for myself, and then after I show them on the blog people want the pattern…. and I don't usually take "in process" pictures when I'm "in the zone" if you know what I mean! I'd love to be able to do a quick drawing for people in those cases. Is there software just for that? Or do you draw everything by hand in Illustrator or something?


  45. Pam July 24, 2013 at 7:00 pm #

    Thank you Thank you Thank you! This is the perfect quilt for me right now. Just was given two large boxes of printed fabric cottons that came from a curtain manufacturer….yippy! Want to make new boyfriend a quilt for his newly painted bedroom….you rock!

  46. happydancequilting July 24, 2013 at 9:38 pm #

    So simple and so absolutely yummy. Thanks for the wonderful inspiration.

  47. Ramblin' On November 26, 2013 at 5:19 am #

    Just made this. Thank you so much for the clear and concise tutorial. I love the colors you use and love your quilts. Very generous of you.

  48. Kate Marshall March 25, 2014 at 11:49 pm #

    I cut a huge pile of 4.5" squares one day and haven't been sure what to do with them until now! Thanks for sharing such a gorgeous pattern.

  49. Jeanne October 30, 2014 at 3:29 pm #

    Thank you!

  50. Judy April 6, 2015 at 11:04 pm #

    Love it Allison! I have very few scraps but I do have lots of charm packs! Thank you for your kindness.

  51. Elizabeth V Kelbaugh June 5, 2015 at 1:35 pm #

    What a wonderful easy pattern for my stash of squares and strips. Thanks for sharing and inspiring!

  52. Teresa Steward September 30, 2015 at 5:45 am #

    Saw three of your quilts I’d love to try. I’ve only made two before. Spooo have decided on either the hourglass the churn dash, or summer scrappy quilt. Which would you suggest for me. Have lots of both scraps and yardage fabric, was manager at fabric store and now poor me right? Fabric poor. By the way didn’t want to quit on other two quilts and made them so big skimmed floor on both sides, more like quilted bedspread,can’t have these that big hubby won’t let me use them on bed saying they’re too heavy. Thanks ahead of time for these beautiful patterns and projects

  53. pamelajs56 April 27, 2016 at 10:53 pm #

    Sweeeeeet! I adore it!

  54. Yoka Bazilewich January 27, 2017 at 8:20 am #

    You make such gorgeous quilts they are a real inspiration. Love the great materials use and sharing a tutorial.
    Thank you very much I love scrappy quilts the best.
    Happy quilting.
    Yoka Bazilewich

  55. sandra oluoma October 19, 2018 at 4:35 am #

    How do I make those rumples appear on my quilt? Am I gonna run a thread ontop the quilt? Please help

    • Allison October 19, 2018 at 9:15 am #

      Hi Sandra! That is the quilting part you are referring to. Google “Free Motion Quilting” and you will find lots of great info and tutorials on you tube to learn how to do it!

  56. Sybil M Cox June 21, 2021 at 3:45 pm #

    If I wanted my print fabric cut to a 6 1/2″ square, what would I cut my two small solid fabrics

  57. Sybil M Cox June 21, 2021 at 3:49 pm #

    I want to make the Scrappy Summer quilt, If I wanted to change the size of my print fabric to 6 1/2″, what would I cut my two small solid fabric pieces.

  58. karen April 26, 2022 at 7:23 am #

    I am trying to find dimensions and directions for a double sized quilt for the 4-square pattern. The link on your site goes to a dead link. Can you assist? Thank you, karen

    • Allison April 26, 2022 at 11:40 am #

      Hi Karen, It looks like I didn’t make that in a Queen size or King size or double sized quilt unfortunately. I’ll take a look at it today closer…it’s been a little too long since I made it I can’t remember! Thanks – Allison

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