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Thread: Really Easy Half Square Triangle Blocks

  1. #1
    Power Poster Rhonda's Avatar
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    Do you have trouble making HSTs? I think my method is really easy. No dog ears no cutting out squares and sewing down the middle on each side of a line.

    A mini cutting mat or a turntable cutting mat would be good. You can cut without a mini but it would make it easier to do.

    You will need a template of whatever size you are making. If you don't have a template you can cut one from stiff cardboard or template plastic but these will be prone to getting cut. And the corners may not be accurate with cardboard or thin plastic.

    But you won't have to buy any thing to make your HSTs. No paper piecing or Thangles or any other expense.

    If you haven't seen my thread then here is my link for free templates. If you need a size other than any of these just let me know.

    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-36008-1.htm

    We make these up ahead and then have them on hand for whatever I decide to make. This works well with scraps too. I just make two piles one dark colors and one light and then I take one of each and sew them together and then cut out the square from the center. You can sew them like flags and it goes pretty quick. Then we go back and cut out the squares. Any leftovers can be recycled.

    Ok here we go. Here is my cut down version for making Half Square Triangles.

    I used a 2 1/2" template and cut my strips 2 1/2" x 11"
    This will give you 5 HSTs. Youcan make your strips longer but this works well for me.

    Turn your mat and cut along the next side
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    Sew your two strips together
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    Iron the seams open for a flat surface
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    Place your template on the strips at the bottom. Place two corners on the seam. Make sure your corners are accurately placed for a better HST
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    Cut along one side
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    Continue turning the mat and cutting as you cut the other two sides
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    Attached Images Attached Images                    

  2. #2
    Power Poster Rhonda's Avatar
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    Now the pieces that are left at the top and bottom can be used to make a 4 patch. There is very little waste with this method.

    The two ends facing each other
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    Trim the edges
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    Match up the seams
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    The two seams together
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    I like to tack the seams so they can't move when I sew
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    Use a template to cut out the 4 patch Make sure your template corners are on the seams accurately or your 4 patch will be off on the corners
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    Sew them together
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    And voila a 4 patch!
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  3. #3
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    fabulous!!!!!

  4. #4
    k3n
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    Power Poster k3n's Avatar
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    Rhonda that's great! I'd seen you do the first stage before but not seaming and using the offcuts and the groovy little 4 patch! Have to try this! Thanks so much for sharing.

  5. #5
    k3n
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    Just had another look - sooooo clever! Now what can I make with lots of HSTs? LOL

  6. #6
    Power Poster Rhonda's Avatar
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    K this is how I used to do it. As I work in scrappy mostly I don't really do alot this way anymore but if you are doing a bunch of the same fabrics this is a quick easy way to do them. I actually started out seaming the strips on both sides and laying the template on the seam and only cutting out one half of the triangle. This works ok but I felt I had better accuracy with the strips open. Both would be fine to use. This is actually a bit quicker to do. But you do have to clean up the squares sometimes from dogears on some of them.

    Seam on both sides
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    Cut one triangle from the seam on one side then place the template on the other seam and cut out.
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    Here are the HSTs from the strips
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  7. #7
    k3n
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    Oh that's cool too! Would you say that's better for longer strips? I also want to preempt any 'fear of bias' comments - since working with OBWs I don't have this anymore, but personally I'd starch the fabric well before cutting. Bias is your FRIEND - it's there to make things FIT! LOL

  8. #8
    Power Poster Rhonda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by k3n
    Oh that's cool too! Would you say that's better for longer strips? I also want to preempt any 'fear of bias' comments - since working with OBWs I don't have this anymore, but personally I'd starch the fabric well before cutting. Bias is your FRIEND - it's there to make things FIT! LOL
    I did spray with sizing before I cut but I have never had a problem with bias so I don't think that way. Tho it could be because I usually work in the small stuff and bias isn't an issue there.

    As to the length of the strip I would say you can make it as long as you want. You will have to swivel the mini mat but that is just a matter of flipping the length out of the way. I also don't actually measure my strips I just rough cut and open the seams and cut. But I did measure these for those who cannot handle the rough cutting. A lot of people do not like to waste anything so I went with the flo so that would not be an issue here. for me it is faster to just cut and sew with out all the measuring but each to their own. I am about fast and a little waste doesn't bother me.

  9. #9
    racnquilter's Avatar
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    Thanks for the quick tip Rhonda. Going to be working on a project that has a ton of half-square triangles and this will make it go so fast.

  10. #10
    Power Poster Rhonda's Avatar
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    You're welcome! It bothered me to see so many people having to struggle to make HSTs. They really aren't that difficult.
    I hope this tutorial helps!

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