BLOCK Friday: Ohio Star Quilt Block

What Star quilt do you gravitate toward? There are plenty to choose from: Star of Bethlehem quilts, Lone Star quilts, Feathered Star quilts, Friendship Star quilts… the list goes on. You’ll find that a typical Star quilt block is composed of six to eight points made of diamonds or triangles radiating from the center.

Today, we’re going to take a closer look at the Ohio Star quilt block, which follows this formula. You can see the 8-pointed Ohio Star in the Ohio Star quilt by Liz Porter. Liz’s Ohio Star pattern features a traditional Ohio Star quilt block that uses hourglass units. The only modern thing about this quilt is the Sew Easy: Quick Hourglass Units method. Use this “no triangles” method for all of your Ohio Star quilts! It’s simple and more accurate than traditional methods.

Ohio Star Quilt
Ohio Star Quilt
Ohio Star by Liz Porter

This quilt block is used in many traditional quilts and has been a part of the quilting world since the 1800s. You may have heard the Ohio Star quilt block referred to as Variable Star, Lone Star or Texas Star. These alternate names for the Ohio Star are results of political happenings in history. The website Quilting in America explains, “A multi-color variation was known as Variable Star in the East, and in the West during the mid-1800s when the annexation of Texas was a political issue it became known as Lone Star, and Texas Star.”

As with all quilt blocks and quilts, with the advancement of quilting techniques, increase in fabric quality, and a general ingenuity among quilters, the Ohio Star quilt block has contributed to the variations in the Ohio Star quilt block over the years.

My Country Quilt - Quilt of Valor
Ohio Star Quilt
My Country by Cheryl Miller

When you combine red, white and blue quilts and Ohio Star blocks, you create the ultimate patriotic quilt pattern. My Country is testament to that! There’s a twist here – can you spot it? Each Ohio Star quilt block is made up of two colorways. These blocks are referred to as two-color split Ohio Star quilt blocks. This approach with color creates a ton of interest and keeps the eye busy, making the quilt even more appealing!

Courthouse Stars Quilt
Courthouse Steps & Ohio Star Quilt
Courthouse Stars by Diane Tomlinson

Courthouse Stars is a great example of how quilters of today create contemporary quilt patterns by using two traditional quilt blocks. Ohio Star quilt blocks are paired with Courthouse Steps quilt blocks to make this extraordinary quilt by Diane Tomlinson of Fons & Porter. What makes this quilt even better is its versatility: it doubles as a scrap quilt pattern and is also fat quarter friendly.

Ohio Star quilts are everywhere because quilters love to make them! They have a traditional look and are visually appealing. Are you interested in learning about those other Star quilts mentioned above? Take a look at BLOCK Friday: Star Quilt Block, Pt. 1 and BLOCK Friday: Star Quilt Block, Pt. 2 for some outstanding Star quilts and a bit more history. And, for an added bonus, Sara Gallegos walks you through a free quilting tutorial, Simple Quilt Blocks: Sawtooth Ohio Star.

Carrie Sisk, Online Editor, Fons & Porter


Happy Quilting!
Carrie Sisk, Fons & Porter, Online Editor

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Carrie Sisk

About Carrie Sisk

Carrie's first sewing machine was a gift from her dad—a better gift was never given. A crafter, trained pianist and experienced paintballer, when the opportunity arises, she's hiking in Yosemite or Rocky Mountain National Park.