Here’s the latest in our series of basic quilt block tutorials – the log cabin block. This blog is built using strips of fabric in different directions. Traditionally you would use darker fabrics on one side and lighter on the other, however you can mix-and-match as you like.
The log cabin block is an ideal beginner’s block as it’s fairly quick and easy to make and doesn’t involve any complicated angles or curves. It’s also a great block to use up your scraps.
In this tutorial I’ve used fabrics from our ‘Autumn Fall’ Fat Quarters Bundle.
How to Make the Log Cabin Quilt Block
Here’s an overview of the stages to make this block
Log Cabin Photo Tutorial
Below are some helpful photographs that show how I created my blocks.
This is a quick and easy method to create a log cabin block. I like it because you can simply create it from fabric strips rather that cutting all individual pieces to the exact sizes.
In the example you see here I’ve used 1½” strips to create an 8” finished block (¼” seam allowance). However, you can use whatever size strip you prefer depending on your project.
Cut 6 1½”x18″ strips (one of each colour). Cut 1 2½”x2½” square.
Step 1 – Cut a strip of colour 1 that is slightly larger than the square.
Step 2 – Place right sides together (RST), and sew in place.
Step 3 – Trim off excess.
Step 4 – Open out and finger press. Cut a strip of colour 2 that is slightly larger.
Step 5 – Place right sides together (RST), and sew in place. Trim off excess.
Step 6 – Open out and finger press. Cut a strip of colour 2 that is slightly larger.
Step 7 – Place right sides together (RST), and sew in place. Trim off excess. Open out and finger press.
Step 8 – Cut a strip of colour 1 that is slightly larger.
Step 9 – Place right sides together (RST), and sew in place. Trim off excess.
Step 10 – Open out and finger press.
Step 11 – Cut a strip of colour 3 that is slightly larger than the square.
Step 12 – Repeat steps 2-10 above for colours 3 and 4.
Step 13 – Cut a strip of colour 5 that is slightly larger than the square.
Step 14 – Repeat the steps 2-10 above for colours 5 and 6, to complete your log cabin block.
Step 15 – Iron seams flat on the reverse.
Example Projects Made with Log Cabin Blocks
The log cabin is a versatile quilt block which can be used to make visually stunning projects. If you use different coloured fabric on each side, you can rotate your blocks to achieve a variety of interesting designs.
Here are some examples of projects using log cabin blocks.
Table runner – Above is a simple table runner, created using a row of 8” log cabin blocks surrounded by a 1″ border. The finished size is 50” x 10”.
Cushion Cover – When placed together and rotated, you can see that these four blocks take on a totally different appearance. These 8” blocks would make a finished panel of 16”x16”.
Quilt – Here is a larger quilt size design that shows the versatility of this block. This pattern is achieved by rotating the blocks. Using 8” blocks, the finished size of this quilt is 64”x64”, which includes a 2” border.
Other Basic Quilt Block Designs
If you enjoyed this log cabin quilt block tutorial, we have also made tutorials for other basic quilting blocks. These include: