The disappearing four patch is an easy quilt pattern that starts with the basic four patch quilt block that gets cut and sewn back together again. There are several ways to make this quilt block with different cuts to the original block. I’m going to share with you three ways to make disappearing four patch quilt blocks.
What is a disappearing four patch?
Start with a basic four patch quilt block, make a few cuts with your rotary cutter, rearrange the pieces and you end up with a block that looks much more complicated! This is a perfect quilt block for beginners who want more details in their quilt blocks.
There are several different ways to cut up your 4 patch quilt blocks to make new blocks – that’s what makes this such a versatile block. I’m showing you a few ways to cut up the original block – you might discover some on your own!
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Play around with your rotary cutter and have some fun making disappearing four patch quilt blocks!
How do you make a 4 patch disappear?
Just by taking your original 4 patch block, giving it a few cuts, rearranging the pieces and it has disappeared into a more complex quilt block!
The first method I’ll show you is very common. You can use two, three or four fabrics. The tutorial uses two fabrics, and then I show how it looks with four fabrics.
Here is the same cut to the quilt block but using four fabrics instead of two fabrics. With this block, I used four 5-inch squares from a charm pack. This is a perfect project to use up some charm packs you might have in your stash.
Start by sewing your four (4) squares together. Then cut them, each the same distance from the center seams. I cut at 1 1/2-inches from each of the seam lines.
Shift the middle rectangles around until you find a combo that you like and sew them together. In using four (4) fabrics, you can see a pattern beginning to form. See how the center small squares line up with the corner squares.
Diagonal Cut Disappearing Four Patch
Another way to make a disappearing four patch quilt block is to cut your 4-patch diagonally. Again, I started with four charm pack blocks or 5-inch squares. I sewed the four blocks together and then cut them apart diagonally. I made four (4) different blocks so I could make the disappearing four patch have more colors. Here is the layout of one of the blocks after the first cuts.
NOTE: The inside cut edges are on the bias. Be careful working with your pieces, as those edges can stretch. Learn more about working with fabric cut on the bias.
Here are several blocks done with a variety of colors using the diagonal disappearing four patch pattern.
Disappearing Four Patch V3
Again, start with four (4) squares the same size. I used four different charm pack fabrics. Make the same cut 1-1/2 inch from one of the seams.
Next, ONLY cut the center section 1-1/2 inch from the center seam. Leave the outside pieces as strips.
Here is the original four patch all cut and ready to rearrange into a new design.
Play around with different layout options until you find one that you like. Here I’ve lined up the green and blue to form diagonal lines with the finished block.
Sew the center row together, so that all three rows are sewn.
Then, line up the center seams and sew the block together. The top and bottom sections will be longer than the center section because we did not make a second cut on the outer sections. Make sure the center seam matches and we’ll trim up the block after we sew the rows together.
Trim the edges and your block is finished!
Disappearing 4 Patch V3 in Two Fabrics
Just like the version above, but in two fabric, here is the four patch cut.
Shift around the top and bottom pieces, and the side pieces.
Sew the units together to form the block.
There are several ways to put the blocks together. Here is option 1:
Here is another option. It’s fun to take the blocks to your design wall and play around with the different ways to lay out the blocks.
These blocks will be close to my design wall to be incorporated into a new project!
Learn how to make the basic four patch quilt block. Check out all of our free quilt patterns on Create Whimsy.