Free Download

Fly those Geese!

Wealth of Days underneath a poster of one of our town’s vintage packing labels

When I first starting making this quilt, I cut each flying geese block by hand because I was not able to rotary cut. I drew out the lines, cut a triangle, and piled up the cut pieces in bags for their corresponding temperatures. After constucting them, I found out how unstable the edges were, how inaccurate a method this was. Of course, it didn’t help that one arm was in a sling, but hey, a quilter’s gotta’ do what a quilter’s gotta do.

I’ve also done the snowball-on-the-square method, which is good for single Flying Geese.

But I’m a fan of the four-at-a-time, provided you use the Mostly-Magical-OPQuilt method of trimming them. I showed this trick to my friend Cindy of LiveAColorfulLife the other day and she said it changed her life. I took that with a grain of salt, considering the covid-lives we’ve been living, but I was happy it worked so well for her. Here we go.

NOTE: In the free Tips and Tricks Handout, downloadable below, I give you a formula for figuring out what sizes the large squares and the small squares should be. No more charts!

I use a 4-inch ruler for smaller Flying Geese, and a 6-ish-inch ruler for larger. (Can we talk about Rulers?) It’s all in where you take your first cut, and the angle of that first cut.

Step One. Make your Flying Geese, and grab a ruler, preferably one that has a diagonal line.

Step Two: With the flying geese point FACING TOWARDS YOU, line up the ruler’s diagonal line with that right-hand folded edge.

Step Three: Concentrate on where the r.h. tip of the ruler is, and where the measurement for your Flying Geese is. I’m trying to make a Flying Geese that will finish at 3″ by 1 1/2″ tall, so I’m concentrating on the 3 1/2″. If you have done your measuring and cutting correctly, don’t worry about the lower edge right now. Line up the r.h tip ON THE FOLD.
Line up the target measurement on the LEFT-HAND FOLD, as shown. Note: I am now free to make Flying Geese any size I want, not just what’s out there in the manufactured acrylic cutting rulers.

Step Four: Trim the RIGHT excess and the TOP excess.

Step Five (and final): Rotate the Flying Geese block so the tip is pointing away from you. Line up the LEFT (3 1/2″) and LOWER (2″) side or the measurement at which you want the block to finish. Trim away the remaining excess (as shown).

I can crank through a ton of flying geese using the four-at-a-time and the Mostly-Magical-OPQuilt-method of trimming. So can you.

Okay, because everyone likes a free handout, here it is: Tips and Tricks from OPQuilt.com — Flying Geese.

Happy Quilting!