NIGHT FLIGHT (or a Flying Geese quilt)

Flying Geese quilt with black background and bright colored geese.

Flying Geese seems to be a well known and well loved block among quilters. These blocks are fairly easy to make and can be arranged in other ways beside the traditional Flying Geese quilts. I like darker backgrounds, and thought that “Night Flight” was a good description of geese flying through a night sky.

According to a couple books in my personal library, this setting is called “Dutchman’s Puzzle”.

Close up of the flying geese

 All the “geese” in this quilt are Jinny Beyers fabric. I had a stash of them and thought this would make a really neat looking quilt if I used solid black for the background. I put a lot of hours into this quilt and it was finished from start to finish in 2008.

Steps to make your own Night Flight:

I started with 5″ squares. I drew a line diagonally and then sewed on each side of the line to make 2 half square triangle pieces that I matched and sewed up the center to make each “goose”. I know this is a time consumptive method, but I prefer the accuracy and working with smaller pieces of fabric.

In order to put the design together, I simply laid the pieces out like a magazine photo I had seen. The pieces in the photo were much smaller, but I like the bigger blocks and they were actually easy to work with.

I used to spend a lot of time working with triangles, but over the past 10 years or so I have gone to using the half square triangle method because of the accuracy, and the way triangles tend (for me at least) to really stretch out of shape, which is means a lot more squaring up to make the blocks fit.

When I show other quilters how to make these Flying Geese blocks, I use this method. The size can be adjusted easily to any size triangles desired.

Another close up of the Flying Geese.

The backing is not a match to the front at all. In fact, I think it is a super ugly fabric (my own opinion). This fabric was on sale for a great price and is good quality cotton. Another plus is that it was on hand. The budget would not stretch enough to cover another back, and the machine quilting.

Backing fabric for this quilt is large orange flowers with green leaves.

Finished size is 100″ square.

Machine quilting is an all over cloud design by RLM in July 2008.

The binding is 2.5″ strips cut from the leftover Jinny Beyers fabrics. It is sewn into a long strip, and ironed in half (1.25″). I machine sewed the raw edge down on the front, flipped it over to the back and hand stitched down.

Night Flight quilt outside

Here are two links to other info on Flying Geese quilts –


Author: IndianaQuilter40

Made first quilt by myself in mid teens. Addicted to quilting. Love using simple quilt patterns and giving them a twist so they are my own....Live in central Indiana. Raised in Montana. Have traveled and worked all over US and in Germany. Certified medical coder, HIM manager, and medical record auditor. Married for 30+ years to a wonderful guy who likes my quilts. We have grown children and starting on grand-kids.

2 thoughts on “NIGHT FLIGHT (or a Flying Geese quilt)”

  1. Love the idea of this quilt. Usually see them with small geese – great idea & look to use big blocks to make quick quilt.

    Live in Terre Haute, IN – besides the place on Wabash, Hobby Lobby and JoAnn’s – have any idea about fabric stores within 50 miles?

    1. Hi Ells,
      I know all 3 of the places you mention in Terre Haute. If you are willing to drive to Sullivan, IN there is a nice shop on the square named “Rockin Bobbin” quilt shop. Vincennes has JoAnn’s and it seems to have some other things than the one in TH. In Daviess County there is Stitching Post and an Amish shop named Wagler’s. If you are willing to drive to the Amish area around Arthur, IL there is Stitch and Sew, and Miller’s Dry Goods. Personally, a road trip for fabric is always good. Be safe and have fun.

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