I know that other clever quilters have already adapted the butterfly block to be 5″ charm-square-friendly. I thought I’d get on board and update my tutorial as well. These butterfly blocks leave more background visible while the originals leave a smaller sliver of it around the butterflies. As I mentioned, these butterflies are less wasteful than the larger blocks! Bonus! I will be adding this to the original tutorial and this update may make more sense in the context of the original. So, let’s begin!
First, cut all of your charm squares in half so that you have two pieces –– 2 1/2″ x 5″:
For each block, cut two 3 1/2″ squares of background:
For each block, you will also need one 1 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ strip for butterfly body (sorry, no pic).
Layer the 3 1/2″ background squares (right sides together or wrong sides together, doesn’t matter) and make an angled cut approx. 1″ in from the bottom right edge and top left edge like so:
Cut so that you have four (mine are still layered) background pieces:
Lay out your butterfly blocks as shown (this just helps me keep track of which direction the background needs to go):
Sew the backgrounds to the butterfly wings (mine have the narrowest part of the background at the corner of the butterfly wing, background extends approx. 1/2″ beyond butterfly wing fabric):
Trim the butterfly wing fabric even with the background seams and press toward the butterfly wings.
Next, trim the background/butterfly wing unit. First trim the background so that it measures 2 1/2″ wide (same width as the butterfly wing). Then trim the background so that this unit is 5 1/2″ long — leaving approx. 1/2″ of background on either side of the widest part of the butterfly wing.
The butterfly wing/background units should measure 2 1/2″ x 5 1/2″.
See, a lot less waste than the original method:
Finally, sew the 1 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ butterfly body between the wings. Press seams toward butterfly body.
Lather, rinse, repeat for more and more butterflies!