Shoofly Block Tutorial

December 31, 2016

The Shoofly block is a mix of Half Square Triangles (HSTs) and squares.  It’s so simple and versatile!  I like to use the 8 At-A-Time Half Square Triangle Method, which gives me enough HSTs to make two Shoofly blocks!

Shoofly Blocks

Number to Cut 6” 9” 12”
A/B HST 1 square of each contrasting color 6 ¾” x 6 ¾” 8 ¾” x 8 ¾”

10 ¾” x 10 ¾”

C 4 2 ½” x 2 ½”  3 ½” x 3 ½” 4 ½” x 4 ½”
D 1 2 ½”  3 ½” 4 ½”
Unfinished Block Size 6 ½” 9 ½” 12 ½”
Trim HSTs to 2 1/2”x 2 1/2” 3 1/2” x 3 1/2” 4 ½” x 4 ½”


Cut squares to the sizes listed in the chart above, depending on the size block you would like to make.

Assemble HSTs:

Make 8 HSTs using the Eight-At-A-Time HST Method (you only need 4 HSTs for this block, but this quick and easy method gives you enough HSTs to quickly make two blocks!)

  1. With two squares of contrasting colors that are right sides together (A and B patches), mark diagonal lines.
  2. With two squares of contrasting colors that are right sides together, sew 1/4″ on either side of the marked diagonal lines.


3.   Cut the square into quarters, as shown below.

4.   Then cut on the original lines you marked on the diagonals to divide the block into eighths.

Steps 3 and 4

 You now have 8 HSTs that need to be trimmed down.  Use your favorite method to trim them down to size delineated in the chart, for the block you are making.

Tip: I love theEleanor Burns Quilt in a Day HST Ruler or the Bloc Loc Ruler.  Here’s a video about how the Eleanor Burns Square Up Ruler works, and another video about the Bloc Loc HST Ruler, so you can decide which is best for you.

You also should consider getting a turntable style cutting mat like this one, if you tend to make a lot of HSTs like I do.  It makes trimming so much easier!

Assemble Block:

Lay out your squares and HSTs according to this diagram, and sew patches together, right sides together, with a ¼” seam allowance.

Traditional Shoofly Block

Sew patches into 3 horizontal rows, as shown below.  Then sew the rows together, and trim

(Tip:  If you trim this block to square it up nicely, be careful NOT to trim off your 1/4″ seam allowance on the corner HSTs.  If you do, you’ll cut off your pretty points (take heart though, you wouldn’t be the first person to ever do this!)

Traditional Shoofly Block Separated Components

Now show me your Shooflys!  Be sure to join our Quilter’s Planner Facebook Group and show us what you’ve made!


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  • Reply Traci L Babcock January 1, 2017 at 7:52 am

    I like your tutorial, but your photo does not match your block. The photo is of churn dash and the tutorial and drawing are for shoofly.

  • Reply carol January 1, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    What is the difference between the shoofly and churn dash block? Are they the same block?

  • Reply Shadywood Quilts January 25, 2021 at 4:09 pm

    A Shoo Fly block does NOT have the split block on the side, but are a solid square The churn dash has the 2 rectangles between each HST

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