Modern Heart Quilt Block

Enjoy a bold take on an old favorite with this Modern Heart Quilt Block

Even though most people associate hearts with Valentine’s Day, I love them all year long. I especially love over sized quilt blocks, so when the idea for this modern heart quilt block came to mind, I couldn’t wait to share it with you.

The pictured modern heart quilt block measures at 32″ x 32″

As shown, she’s quite a big girl. That large scale with bold design and plenty of negative space is the hallmark for a modern quilt design, and this block has it in droves. When I first made pieced hearts a few years back, it was on a much smaller scale. Today’s design is based on 8.5″ square units and the first one used 2.5″ squares. Very big difference!

small pillow made with a quilted heart

I incorporated the smaller heart into a pillow project and used a fun dog print as my background. Because who doesn’t love dogs?

You can clearly see there is a center panel of 4 solid squares and most everything else is a half square triangle. You could also make flying geese units for the top and bottom points if preferred.

I thought the center panel gave an opportunity for a block within a block design and created 3 options for the center panel.


Let’s talk about the interchangeable center panel in this modern heart quilt block design. The center panel is what makes this version so unique.

I made 3 different classic quilt blocks in finished 16″ blocks.

You can use these ideas or your favorite version. I has to be either a 16 patch or a 4 patch design for the measurements to fit.

Let’s talk fabric selection

A lot of what you select for a fabric will be determined by what center panel you make. This tutorial will focus specifically on the sawtooth star. For your fabric you will need:

  • Neutral Background
  • Print for the heart
  • 2 Prints for the center panel. I used the same print as I used in the over all heart and a contrast for the star.
  • Contrast color print for binding

What Units do we need to construct this Modern Heart Quilt Block?

For the outer Heart Shape. Makes a 32.5″ Block:

  • Background Fabric: 2 – 8.5″ Squares (I used White)
  • Heart Fabric: 2 – 8.5″ Squares PLUS 8 – 8.5″ HST units made with the heart print and background fabric (I used Red)

For the Inner Star Panel. Makes a 16.5″ Block:

  • Background Fabric: 4 – 4.5″ Squares (I used the same red as the heart print fabric)
  • Star Legs Fabric: EITHER (using the background fabric AND a third print for the star shape)
    • 4 Flying Geese units measuring 8.5″ x 4.5″ OR
    • 8 – 4.5″ HST units
  • Center Panel of Star Block: 4 – 4.5″ HST units using the background and star legs fabric

Ok so, what does this look like?

What else do I need?

If you want to make this as it’s own standalone wall quilt, you’ll need

  • Backing Fabric: Go at least a yard and quarter
  • Inner Border Fabric: I cut a narrow 1.5″ strip of my white background fabric to give a small space between the heart design and the contrast outer border. 4 strips will do the job.
  • Outer Border Fabric: Selecting a contrast color fabric as an outer border will beautifully frame your wall hanging. Cut four strips at standard 2.5″, or go bold with 3.5″ to bind with a wider edge.
  • Binding: Using the same fabric for binding as the border provides a seamless finish to your wall quilt. Cut four strips at standard 2.5″. Join the strips on the bias to create one continuous strip and prepare as usual.
  • Quilt Batting: At least a yard and a quarter of your favorite quilt batting.

large quilt block made to look like a heart

Bold AND Beautiful

I love the look of a quilt block within a quilt block, and this wall hanging does not disappoint! Spectactular, spectacular.


Looking for something larger?

If you really want something bold, construct 4 over size Modern Heart Quilt Blocks and join them as a quilt top to create a beautiful throw size quilt. I am planning a full written pattern to demonstrate this project so be looking for that!

What other options are available for the center panel?

I’m so glad you asked!! Literally ANY 16″ block will fill the space. It’s up to you to choose your shapes and colors.


If you love this, then you’ll really love the next bit of inspiration for the center panel of your Modern Heart Quilt Block.

The center panel of the star is created by rotation 4 HST units to make different shapes and designs. Here are other options. It’s really up to you to choose your favorite. The construction instructions and pieces you’ll cut as outlined above are identical.

Tips and tricks for success

In case you didn’t know it, quilting is a precision sport. It requires exact cutting and sewing and perfect seam allowances in order to get points and corners and seams to line up properly. Fortunately, there are some items to help in this endeavor. Here’s what I recommend.

  • A really good rotary cutter. (affiliate link) Since making the switch, I swear by Olfa. It’s the only brand I use now.
  • Square quilting rulers in the size you need. I love Creative Grids rulers, (affiliate link) and I like them in every size. Then I know I have my cutting perfect. But don’t worry, because you don’t have to buy everything at once. It’s pricey, but if you take care of your things, you’ll have them forever.
  • Rotating cutting mats (affiliate link) are a game changer. Also a rather pricey specialty item, but WOW the trimming you get using them is so worth it.
  • I can’t say enough about good lighting. Finding adequate task lighting (affiliate link) can be expensive and difficult. So I wound up using my grow lights! They are perfect for any sort of crafts.

quilt pieces laid out to demonstrate 3 different center panel options

Choose your adventure!

Here you can see the block next to my rather large desk for size reference. And you can see the 3 options I prepared as the center panel.

Quilting is about making the project your own and this project is designed around the idea of easy personalization.

Enjoy and let me know what you think about this as a throw quilt. I think it would be gorgeous.


smiling woman in a bright green shirt with a pink patchwork quilt

Hi! I’m Pattymac

Quiltmaker, baker, gardener

I love figuring out new ways to use pom poms, where I can stash more fabric, and I’m always wondering what to bake next…chocolate or lemon? When not dreaming up new things to make (or bake), I love riding my beach cruiser on the Boardwalk, enjoying classic movies, and planting new things in my tiny but mighty container garden.

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