What Would Happen If…Drunkard’s Path Variation Block

As mentioned in my post about the quilt made from this block, I was in experimental mode and wanted to try my hand at curved piecing.  So I decided to make a Drunkards Path – like block, but with a twist.  I wasn’t using a traditional template and I wanted to come up with a less traditional pattern once my blocks were sewn together as well.  I used cut yardage and 5″ charm pack squares to make my block, plus an Omni Arc ruler.  I used a 1/4″ seam allowance for all sewing. The block finished at 7 1/2″ square.  Here are the steps for making this block:

DP Block

Step 1:  Make a half square triangle block.  I cut two 8 1/2″ inch squares of my chosen light and dark fabric, put them right-sides together and drew a diagonal line on the back from corner to corner.  I then sewed the two squares together with a stitched line 1/4″ from the center drawn line on both sides of the line.  After cutting through the center line I had two completed half-square triangles.

Step 2:

Lay your HST block on your cutting board right side up with the light triangle on the bottom right.  Choose a charm square and lay it on top of the HST, right side up lining the edges up with the right lower corner of your HST block.


Step 3:

Lay your Omni Arc ruler on top of your block and align the right and bottom ruler lines as shown.  There are lines clearly marked on the ruler for you to align the edges of your block before you cut arcs into your square.

Arc Ruler w Arrows

Step 4:

Choose a line for the size of the wedge shape you desire for your block.  I chose arc line number 4 so that I would have some fabric left from the charm square to use in a different block.

Arc Ruler with curve Arrows

Step 5:

Place your rotary cutter blade into the cut-out section of the ruler and cut your curved line.   I was able to successfully do this with my 45 mm blade without a problem.


With just one cut you now have 4 curved pieces of fabric:


Set aside the light wedge and dark L-shaped piece to sew together later.  You’ll get a nice stack of these as you make additional blocks.


Step 6:

Take your large HST with the concave cut and lay it on your cutting board right side up.  Now cut off a 1/2″ strip from the right side as illustrated below:


Step 7:

Turn the block to the left and make another 1/2″ cut as illustrated below:


Your wedge will now be bigger than the curve in the square.  These cuts will account for the seam allowance when you sew your wedge into the curve.


Step 8:

Sew the wedge into the curve using a technique with which you are most comfortable.  I started by pinning just once in the center, but after doing that for a while I switched to the No-Pin technique that I linked in my front-page posting.  Again, I found that if you stretched your wedge a little while sewing and it didn’t quite line up on the end, just square it up.  But if you are squaring up, and are reducing the sizes of some of your blocks, you’ll need to do that to all of your blocks so that they sew together correctly.

Here’s the block layout I used:

HST Drunkards Path Top

Sewing Your Leftovers into Blocks

To make small Drunkard’s Path blocks from your leftover pieces do the following:


Just like you did with the larger block, cut 1/2″ pieces off of the ends of your print L-shaped piece.  Then sew your light-colored wedge into the curve using your chosen method.  These finish at about 4″ square.


You’ll have a stack of small Drunkard’s Path blocks that you can incorporate somehow into a quilt of your own design, or use in the backing for this quilt if desired!


I hope you have fun trying out this block for yourself!  I was really excited and pleased with how my experiment turned out.





8 thoughts on “What Would Happen If…Drunkard’s Path Variation Block

  1. rl2b2017

    Hi! Your photo came up in my Pinterest feed today and it’s quite timely! I am trying to do something different with a curved border . . . so I think I’ll give this a try in a much smaller size and different layout. Thank you so much for sharing all the details! I’m PINing it, too because it’s cool. I’ll link back to you when I actually share my finished item. It’s for a Stay-At-Home Round Round that doesn’t start until January so it will be a while until it’s finished. {{Hugs}} ~smile~ Roseanne


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