Today I want to share with you a tutorial for making the Broken Dishes quilt block. There’s actually a couple different blocks that share the name Broken Dishes. For this tutorial I am focusing on the block that is featured in the 2017 Quilter’s Planner created by Stephanie at Late Night Quilter.
The Broken Dishes block is a traditional block that has been used by quilters for a long time and is most likely one of the earliest blocks. The block is composed of half square triangles (HSTs). The history of why the block was named Broken Dishes is not clear but most likely was named for when dishes ended up broken which would have been a big deal in the 1700s.
Fabric Requirements: For this tutorial, I am using 4 different fabrics.
Cutting Directions: For this tutorial I am going to make a 12” finished block. I’ve provided the cutting information for two other sizes as well.
Piecing Directions: Use a ¼” seam allowance
Half Square Triangle Units: Draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of Fabric A. With right sides facing, layer the Fabric A square with the Fabric B square.
Stitch 1/4″ on either side of the drawn line.
Cut on the drawn line and press towards Fabric B, the darker fabric. You should now have a 6 1/2″ HST, trim if necessary. Repeat these steps with Fabrics C and D.
Place the HSTs as shown and sew together in rows.
Sew rows together.
The Broken Dishes block offers a lot of flexibility if you play with the placement of fabrics. Using 4 different fabrics, like in the tutorial, you can create a quilt like this:
But using only 2 fabrics gives a more modern feel:
Broken Dishes is a simple block that provides a lot of flexibility when designing a quilt. I hope you consider using it in a future project. Come back Wednesday for another traditional block tutorial.