Red, White and Blue
Celebrate with Pinwheels~

Finished Block Size is 12.5"
Basic directions:
~Be consistent with your seam size of 1/4"
~Finger press between sewing seams.  When ironing, be careful not to stretch!
~If batting will be used, press seams to one side; if a batting won't be used seams can be pressed open
~To reduce bulk, clip the points off

For each block there are 5 pinwheels
Each pinwheel requires:
(2) 3" squares (navy)
(2) 2 3/8" squares (red)
(2) 2 3/8" squares (white)

Cut each square in half diagonally creating four triangles of each color.

Sew one white triangle to one red.

Finger-press each pair open.

Sew each red/white triangle pair to large navy without stretching the fabric.
Finger press the seams to the navy side.

Take the four quarters together to make a square.
Butt the seams up against the opposite side to get your points sharper.
Trim each of the five blocks to 4.5"

Decide what you want to use for your filler blocks.

Cut (4) 4.5" squares

Join all of the blocks..

And you will have a completed 12.5" block!

If you want to turn your block into a bag..

Cut (2) 3" X 12.5" strips for the sides
Cut (2) 2" X 17.5" for the top and bottom
Cut (2) 2.5" X desired length for the straps (mine are 28")
Optional pocket--make a 6th pinwheel and cut a backing fabric 4.5" square

Sew the sides strips to each side, then the top and bottom strips.
Using this larger block as a pattern cut:
(1) of outer back fabric
(2) of interfacing if desired 
(I used Pellon 808 and ironed it to the wrong side of the outer bag)
(2) of the lining fabric

Fold and sew straps in half length-wise, right-sides together.
Turn right-side out and press.
Top stitch around 1/8" from each edge

Place 6th Pinwheel and backing fabric right-sides together.
Sew 1/4" seam around 3 sides.
Turn right-side out and press while turning 4th side and tucking it in 1/4".
Top stitch across this open end making it the top of the pocket.
Place your pocket on the lining and top stitch around sides and bottom to create 
a pocket on the lining.

With right-sides together, sew the lining together around three sides.
Leave the top open and press 3/8" to the wrong-side of the lining.

Repeat for the outer bag.

Take the lining and put it inside the outer bag with wrong-sides together.
Place two inches of the straps ends between the lining and outer bags.

Top-stitch 1/4" from the edge around the top of the bag.
Repeat 1/8" around.
(I usually do extra over the straps to help them stay secure)
Sew a rectangle through all layers over the ends of the straps.

Pull out the corners of the lining and outer bag together
so the outer bag is inside the point.
Measure 1" from the end and sew straight across.
Repeat for the other side and you will have a nice flat bottom when you
push the sewn ends back in.

You can embellish it as desired to make it unique!
I decided I wanted an edge of navy around the top so cut my lining piece
1.25" taller than the outer bag.  
I pulled the extra above the outer bag and top-stitched as directed above, 
with the fold above it.

Celebrate your new finished bag!

Please email if you have questions about the block or bag :o)


  1. Hi, Sharon - great tutorial and pictures. I especially like the chain-pieced triangle bunting pic. :) And I had to smile at your description to butt the seams for more perfect points - a point that my friend Debbie and I debate whenever we're writing instructions... Butt? Abut? Nestle? We teach 4-H kids so we just tell them to Kiss their seams, and they always giggle. The bag turned out great!

  2. Great tutorial! Easy to follow and love the pictures....Judith, Texas

  3. Hi been trying to find the tutorial you did on the bow tie block. I bookmarked it but when I bring it up it goes to the main blog page... do you have a link where can get to it.... yes remember so well watching the fireweed blooms to anticipate winter's arrival in Eagle River...thanks

    1. I moved it to the post page because so many people were having trouble with the link. This should get you to the page:


      I hope it works for you!


It is so nice to hear from you!
Thanks for taking the time to leave a note!
I will respond to you directly by email,