Tag Archives: Courthouse Steps Quilt

New york city blocks

New York City Blocks

Hello Dear Friends and Readers,

Are you ready to use some more scraps? I sure hope so, because I think you will love these easy New York City Blocks! Come and make some with me! I would just like to take a few moments to let you know how this came about.

Recently, my friend Mary Beard posted a quilt she had made from 3” squares. Mary is an amazing quilter with a great energy for quilting. I would encourage you check out her quilts on FB. Mary has a large volume of work and a great deal of it is hand sewn. She has a passion for Crazy Quilts.

When she said 3” squares it immediately got my attention, as I just happened to have a small stack of 3” squares just waiting for another project. She definitely inspired me to make something similar.

I had previously I used a lot of 3” x 3” squares when I made these Ohio Stars Blocks.

Ohio Star Blocks – Part 2 Tutorial

Mary had bordered her 3” squares on each side. I’m not really sure how to classify this block. It’s unusual, in that it has five pieces in the block. Maybe it could be called a five patch block, or square in a square block. or perhaps it could be called a simplified Courthouse Steps. I suppose with a more coordinated colour scheme it could be called an “H” Block.

Previously I made a simplified Courthouse Steps Quilt which you can see here.

Courthouse Steps Quilt

Actually, now that I have reflected on it, I have also seen similar blocks on Pinterest, where it appears old pieces of embroidered linens for the centre squares which would create a very fancy, very beautiful quilt.

Anyhow, when I showed the blocks I made to my dear husband, he said, wow it looks like New York City Street Blocks. I have to say I agree with him and hence the name!

There is another quilt block style called New York Beauty. This is based on the Chrysler Building on Lexington Avenue in New York City. A beautiful example of an Art Deco building. The New York Beauty Block is a very beautiful design, but a lot more complex than what we are making today..

Chrysler Building

Mary used a theme of floral squares and I believe she may have hand pieced hers. It certainly could be made as a hand piecing project which would travel nicely. I’m using a range of leftovers, so the theme is just unbridled scrappy!! I am machine piecing my blocks. These blocks are perfect practice for checking the accuracy of our 1/4” seam allowances. 😁

I’m confident that whatever fabric you choose, it will create a fabulous quilt with a look that could be very modern or vintage depending on the fabrics you use with a lots of movement and interest for such a simple block. If you happen to have a stash of Japanese fabrics, they would also be wonderful. It’s just up to your imagination.

Block size 5” x 5”

Finished block size 4 1/2” x 4 1/2”

This is how I did it.

Requirements for One New York City Block

1 of 3” x 3” square

2 of 3” x 1 1/2” strips

2 of 5” x 1 1/2” strips

New York City Blocks 
New York City Blocks

Constructing the New York Block

Using 1/4” seam allowance, sew a 3 x 1 1/2” strip to one side of the 3” x 3” square. Sew The second 3” x 1 1/2” strip to the opposite side of the 3” x 3” square. Finger press the seams away from the centre square.

New York City Blocks
New York City Blocks susies-scraps.com

Now sew a 5” x 1 1/2” strip to the 5” side of the block. Repeat for the opposite side.

New York City Blocks susies-scraps.com

Aren’t they just sweet!

I know it will seem obvious, but you can make as many or as few blocks as you like, from a crib to queen size. So far I have made 90 blocks. I think with a border this could make a nice lap quilt. Assemble the blocks so that the long and short sides of the squares alternate to give the New York City Blocks look.

New York City Blocks susies-scraps.com

They grow pretty quickly. 😀

New York City Blocks susies-scraps.com

Sewing them together on my vintage Singer 201K treadle. I’m sewing them all together in one hit, making long joined rows, which are connected. Then I will just sew up the columns. The blocks nest very nicely because of the alternating blocks.

New York City Blocks
New York City Blocks susies-scraps.com

Super scrappy, and anything goes. Ill get back to you again when I add some borders.

Thank you so much for the inspiration Mary!

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like

Antique One Patch Block Made Easy

Floral Coins Quilt Antique Style

Scrappy Depression Economy Block Made Easy

Uneven Four Patch Block Tutorial

Hoping you can enjoy some sewing today!