QUILT BLOCK TUTORIAL: Bow Tie Block

Bow Tie Quilt Block by Tara Reed

FREE QUILT BLOCK TUTORIAL: Bow Tie Block

Want to learn to sew a versatile quilt block? The Bow Tie Block is great for projects small and large and quick to put together!

This tutorial creates a 6″ finished block – a chart follows to show how to create a 9 or 12″ block as well.All seams are sewn at scant ¼″

Free Bow Tie Quilt Block Cutting Chart by Tara Reed

If you are using an overall toss or non-directional fabric you can skip this part. Simply cut the small “bow tie squares” to size and move to the next step. When deciding on fabric for this tutorial I wanted to create a 6″ mug mat (instructions to follow) with a lodge feel.

I chose the forest print as my background – watch the direction as you use that so you don’t have your trees upside down! Then I chose the animal print for the “bow tie”.

Since I didn’t want an animal cut through the face or upside down on the final project, I needed to be careful about how I fussy cut the 2″ square AND check and double check how I sewed the pieces to the background blocks.

My 2½″ Cute Cut® square ruler by Lori Holt (from Riley Blake Designs – see link to purchase at the bottom of the post) was perfect for fussy cutting my squares. Here is what you need to do:

line up to fussy cut Bow Tie Quilt Block
figure 1

Because the print I was using was pretty dark and it was hard to see the markings on my square, I turned the print over and lined it up from the back. (figure 1)

Remember that ½ the square will be cut away so you need to place your desired image on one side or the other of the square.

check the fussy cut Bow Tie Quilt Block
figure 2

Place the square and fold it the way it will go once sewn to make sure you got it right. (figure 2)

If you don’t have extra fabric in case you make a mistake and need to cut again, you can do a quick sketch with an image or a simple arrow on a paper before you cut your fabric and test that!

check the fussy cut Bow Tie Quilt Block
figure 3

Place and double check both sides before sewing to save you seam ripping time later!(figure 3)


  • On the wrong side of each of the two 2″ squares DRAW a diagonal line from corner to corner. (figure 4)
  • SEW along the drawn lines. (figure 5)
  • TRIM excess corners 1/4″ from the sewn lines and press seams. (figure 6)
Free Bow Tie Quilt Block Tutorial by Tara Reed
figure 4
On the wrong side of each of the two 2" squares DRAW a diagonal line from corner to corner.
figure 5
Free Bow Tie Quilt Block Tutorial by Tara Reed
figure 6
  • ARRANGE the four units and sew into two rows of two units – paying attention to the direction of the fabric if necessary.(figure 7)
  • SEW together to finish the block. (figure 8)
Free Bow Tie Quilt Block Tutorial by Tara Reed
figure 7
Bow Tie Quilt Block
figure 8

The Bow Tie block is great for beginners and can be put together is so many ways for quilts or other projects.


— LOVE THIS IDEA? —

Be sure to save it to Pinterest and follow me for more ideas and resources for sewing, crafting and creative living.

If you make this or other projects and post on Instagram, be sure to tag me (@artisttarareed). Follow my YouTube channel for new sewing projects and tips every week.

🧵 Tara Reed

P.S. Is there a sewing tutorial you’d love to see? Leave me a comment and I’ll add it to my idea list!

— YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE —

Make a mug rug with the bow tie block >

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