Free Tutorial - Card Basket Quilt Block

Posted by Elaine Huff on

Let's sew together this traditional Card Basket Quilt Block today! I can't figure out how this translates to a "card basket" but it is a pretty star block. It only has three components and goes together pretty quickly. Let's get started!

card basket

Fabric Requirements for a 9" Finished Card Basket Quilt Block:

  • Light/Ivory: 1 - 4.5" square, 2 - 4" squares, and 1 - 3.5" square
  • Medium/Green: 1 - 4.5" square, and 4 - 2" squares
  • Dark 1/Burgundy Calico: 2 - 4" squares
  • Dark 2/Burgundy Print: 2 - 4.5" squares

card basket fabric requirements

Sewing Directions:

Half Square Triangle Units:

Step 1:

Using the Light/Ivory 4" squares and the Dark 1/Burgundy Calico 4" squares, sew together four Half Square Triangle units as shown in the picture below. Trim the units to 3.5" square. You can find my tutorial for making Half Square Triangle blocks at:

half square triangle units

Square in a Square Unit:

Step 2:

Using the Light/Ivory 3.5" square and the four Medium/Green 2" squares, sew together a Square in a Square unit as shown below. This unit will be used for the center unit of the Card Basket block. You can find my tutorial for making a Square in a Square block at:

square in a square unit

Hourglass Units:

Step 3:

The final component for this block is the Hourglass unit. Using the Light/Ivory 4.5" square, the Medium/Green 4.5" square, and the two Dark 2/Burgundy Print 4.5" squares, put together four Hourglass units as shown in the picture below. In my tutorial at you can find the basic instructions and a couple of variations for making the Hourglass block. For this 3-color variation, pair up one Dark 2/Burgundy Print square with the Light/Ivory square, and the other Dark 2/Burgundy Print square with the Medium/Green square to make the initial half square triangles used to complete the Hourglass unit.

hourglass units

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Putting It All Together:

Step 4:

Now you can lay out the Half Square Triangle units, the Square in a Square unit, and the Hourglass units in a typical Nine Patch configuration as shown in the picture below.

card basket 4

Step 5:

All that's left is to sew the units into 3 rows as shown below.

card basket 5

Step 6:

Press the seam allowances in opposite directions from row to row. In this example I've pressed the seam allowances toward the Hourglass units.

card basket 6

Step 7:

Sew the three rows together and you're done! Well, except for the pressing.

card basket

Step 8:

I've pressed my seam allowances toward the outside of the block but you can press however you want. If you are making multiple blocks and sewing them together without sashing, I would recommend pressing toward the outside. That way you can just turn every other block and the seams will nest together nicely. But if you're going to put sashing in between the blocks, it doesn't matter.

card basket 9


This Card Basket quilt block went together really fast! The individual units aren't difficult and it makes a lovely star. When put together without sashing, you will get a diamond shape where the four blocks come together. If you make a quilt with sashing and a colored fabric cornerstone, you will get a Shoofly design where the blocks come together.

I hope you enjoy making the Card Basket quilt block! If you like this tutorial and want to see more, simply click HERE to sign up for my newsletter and receive a free PDF quilt pattern called "Chained Weathervane".

Happy Quilting!


P.S. To change this block to a 12" finished block you will need to cut your fabric patches as follows and trim/square up the units to a 4.5" square:

  • Light/Ivory: 1 - 5.5" square, 2 - 5" squares, and 1 - 4.5" square
  • Medium/Green: 1 - 5.5" square, and 4 - 2.5" squares
  • Dark 1/Burgundy Calico: 2 - 5" squares
  • Dark 2/Burgundy Print: 2 - 5.5" squares

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