Lighthouse Quilt

Lighthouse Quilt

With lighthouses featuring prominently in Jutta’s travel diary “Great Lakes 2005”, it was inevitable that sooner or later we would publish a lighthouse quilt project on Quilt around the World. And here it is!

The quilt is a straightforward single block project, made up of 25 10” blocks in a simple horizontal setting without sashing.

The block is called “Lighthouse” and was first mentioned in the Chicago Tribune on February 17, 1936 (source: The Quilter’s Album of Patchwork Patterns by Jinny Beyer).  

As the Lighthouse block is very abstract, we decided to tamper a little with the basic colour placement and included stylized rays of light radiating from an imaginary centre representing a lighthouse in action.

Lighthouse Quilt

We present this pattern in a colour combination which evokes water, beaches and light with the occasional interspersed red to liven up the scene with a red buoy, boat or lighthouse. Feel free to change the colouring. If you stay with the “ray of light” scheme, make sure that the fabric for the rays contrasts well with the blue and the sand coloured fabrics.

This pattern marks a “first” for us: So far, all our patterns were based on projects we had actually sewn ourselves which you will have noticed from the many step by step pictures (see section Projects at Quilt around the World to find all available patterns grouped into sub sections such as quilts, stationery, jewellery etc). We really wanted to publish this project to run along side the travel diary so for the Lighthouse Quilt, we haven’t yet got as far as the sewing machine, but have remained quietly behind the computer playing with different settings in EQ7 and  are now delighted with the result. We are now sorting fabrics ready for cutting and sewing...

Lighthouse Block

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Finished Quilt Size:

Ca. 50” by 50” (ca. 125 cm by 125 cm)


Intermediate to Advanced

Technique and Layout:

The Lighthouse Quilt was designed for template free techniques. Neither the block as such nor the quilt layout are overly difficult, but the block has many pieces and therefore requires some staying power. Moreover, the colour placement invoking the revolving rays of light emanating from the lighthouse requires working with a design wall and carries some risk of misplacement of the white fabric pieces. If you feel that you are not up to this challenge, we recommend you leave out the rays of light and sew a straightforward block quilt.

Since the many lively blocks give the quilt lots of motion, we decided not to add any border at all.

For this quilt, there is an original free-motion quilting pattern which you will find in one of the later chapters of this book (set of instructions).


Read all the instructions carefully including those on quilting and finishing before starting the project. If you are still fairly new to quilting, we also suggest that you read our recommendations on fabric preparation and sewing.

Material needed:

  • Sand coloured fabric: 2 yds (ca. 2 m)
  • Four different blue fabrics: 0.75 yds (ca. 0,75 m)


The block needs at least two different blue fabrics, but you would of course be free to use a lot more different blues in the entire quilt. Also a good opportunity to use up all these blue scraps and leftovers!

  • Red fabric: 0.75 yds (ca. 0.75 cm)
  • White: 0.5 yds (ca. 0.5 m)


If you plan to machine quilt your version of the Lighthouse Quilt, we suggest that you use a cotton, cotton/polyester blend or a bamboo batting as these battings are very suitable for machine quilting.

  • Batting: ca 60” by 60” (ca. 140 cm by 140 cm)
  • Backing fabric: ca. 60” by 60” (ca. 140 cm by 140 cm)
  • Dark blue fabric for the binding


Fabric requirements include an allowance for cotton shrinking no more than 10% when pre-washed before cutting and sewing.

Other tools and notions needed:

  • Rotary cutter, cutting mat, ruler
  • Optional:Accuquilt with dies #55063X and #55059
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Sewing machine
  • Matching sewing thread
  • Thread for machine quilting
  • Safety pins, basting thread or basting spray
  • (for the label) Computer, ink-jet printer, fabric prepared for printing

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