Tumbling blocks with no Y seams video tutorial

Video tutorial: tumbling blocks with no Y seams

Tumbling blocks without Y seams

This tutorial is for making tumbling blocks using strips sewn together – no Y seams.

This technique, developed in 1987 by Marci Baker, is available in the book ABC 3-D Tumbling Blocks … and More! and the pattern Playing with Blocks for purchase.

How to make quick and easy tumbling or baby blocks

Learn how to make baby blocks in less than 3 minutes:

Tumbling block size

Each individual tumbling block size is about 4 1/2 x 3 7/8 inches.


You will need a 60 degree ruler or a square ruler with a 60 degree marking.

Piece 1

  • One 3 inch strip x width of fabric (WOF) in cream/white
  • Two 2 1/2 inch strip x WOF in dark red or any other dark colour

Piece 2

  • One 3 inch strip x width of fabric (WOF) in cream/white
  • Two 2 1/2 inch strip x WOF in yellow or any other medium colour

Video tutorial: No Y seams tumbling blocks - easy quilting

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65 thoughts on “Video tutorial: tumbling blocks with no Y seams”

  1. Hello i love this! If i wanted to make blocks with a 5″ center would my outer srrips need to be 4.5″ and i cut the sewn in strips 4.5″. Any help world be appreciated. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Lyndsay, I don’t have the answer to that but you can do a test with paper. Draw your lines on a piece of paper and see if you can cut at a 60 degree angle from corner to corner.


  3. Am I the only person/quilter who does not have access to video tutorials? I was disappointed that there were no printed instructions…can you help me out here? It sounds lovely and I have done the Y seam process, so would really like to be able to do your method. Thanks, Jo

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Your tutorial is too fast for me. Do you have a printed direction for me to study and follow? Thank you. Maggie Marshall


  5. Have a look at the commentary above and you’ll find the link to a written tutorial using this technique


  6. I love this quilt, This is my first attemp. I am having a very hard time cutting the trips in half using a 60 degree triangle, I can;t get the 60* angle to go corner to corner

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This technique can be a bit tricky. You need to be very accurate with the cutting and sewing of the strips, which I wasn’t. So you may need to kind of “fake” it by cutting at a slightly smaller or bigger angle and then I also used a bit engineering to sew them together.


  8. I don’t see it written anywhere how much you need for a quilt. do you have any estimates of yardage for a baby quilt? thanks!


  9. I am excited to make this quilt in bold black, white and grey for my daughter who is a graphic designer. What size strips would I need to use to make the blocks bigger so that I am not making a gazillion to put together as a queen size quilt?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Hi Silvia, this is the only size I’ve tried and I don’t know of any formulas for this block.


  11. Hi Theresa – Loved your tumbling blocks quilt where you showed how to use a DIY 60 degree template. I am unable to download it in order to print it. Do you have it anywhere else on your site so I can try downloading it again?
    Abbi Timms


  12. Always loved the pattern but not loving how it goes together. Your directions are brilliant – I may just be able to make this someday!! Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I am in the midst of making this quilt but I am not sure if I am pressing the seams the right way. For each strip, I am alternating the seams – 1 strip up and the next strip down. I am struggling with how to press the long seams between strips. Can you explain how you do this?

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Claire I usually press my seams open. I’m aware not every quilter agrees with this and it may have an impact on how long quilts last but I’m ok with that. When I press to one side I us press towards the darker print.


  15. Wonderful! I love this. Thank you. If you place the dark and medium three strip pieces right sides together, when you cut they will automatically be in the opposite direction.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Thank you for this tutorial. It will be my next project when I finish my quilt.

    Do you think I can scale it up? Example: in stead of 2,5-3-2,5 then 4,5-5-4,5 or 7,5-8-7,5 for instance?

    And just to sure: seam allowance is at quarter of an inch?

    Greetings fro Denmark 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Mathilde, In the comments for this video on YouTube a lady gave a different size she tried that worked for her.


  18. June, there may be smarter ways to finish the top but if I were to make a full quilt I would just simply square the top.


  19. The construction reminds me of the one block wonder quilts. I love that this can be done with just three colors/fabrics. Nice job. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Just starting to learn to quilt. I get aggravated when my seams don’t line up correctly. Set it aside for awhile then go back to it. What am I doing wrong and why am I so intimidated by something so simple?

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Hi Deb, you’re not doing anything wrong, we all go through the same when learning to quilt. I had trouble just sewing a straight line using a guide. And I’m still not perfect:) My recommendation is to go easy on yourself, learning a new skill needs many many hours and patience. Every “failure” is a learning opportunity.


  22. After watching the tutorial I am wondering after cutting the 60 degree angle on the end, I am not sure what cutting the 2 1/2 inch pieces in intervals mean. Thank you


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