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Thread: Can someone check my math?

  1. #1
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    I'm fairly new to quilting and doing a BOM with a LQS in my area. I should know better than to trust the cutting and measuring instructions by now. They haven't been right yet. But here goes...

    If I want a 4 1/8 square block made from 4 quarter sqare triangles how big should the squares the QST's come from be? My instructions told me to cut 4 QST from 4 3/4 inch squares and sew them together. I'm supposed to get a 4 1/8 inch block from that? I only get a 4 inch block. What am I doing wrong?

  2. #2
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    you need 7/8 and it will finish to 1/2

  3. #3
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    4 7/8 will make it 4 and 1/2
    I hope that made since to you

  4. #4
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    Are you making your seams a scant quarter inch? That could make the difference of an eighth inch...and are you pressing well?

  5. #5
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    when I started quilting and doing 1/2 Tringles the 7/8 was hard for me so i would go to the next one up and then trim them down

  6. #6
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    Are you aiming for a 4-1/8 inch size finished or unfinished size block/unit?

    (That does seem like an odd dimension for a unit)

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    I measured the seam, it is a scant 1/4 inch, and I did press it well. I would be less concerned if this only happened to one of the blocks but ALL 4 came out to the exact same measurement of 4 inches. If nothing else, I'm consistent.

    My inclination is to cut down as well and I think this is another of this person's poor directions. For a nine-patch block she had us cut 4 inch blocks and told us the final block would make a 12.5 inch square (really? She's been doing some fuzzy math). I really hate it when someone is obviously using a computer program to make up these things but doesn't take the time (or knows less than I do and this started out being my first quilt) to get it right. Frustrating.

    Sorry for the rant. I just hate wasting the hour on something that will never be right.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray
    Are you aiming for a 4-1/8 inch size finished or unfinished size block/unit?

    (That does seem like an odd dimension for a unit)
    Odd is right. This is the size that the pieced square should be so I can then add it to the rest of the block. This person is in love with the 4 1/8 inch thing. My theory is that she doesn't even know what it is because her sample blocks never measure to what the directions say. GRRRR

    My second theory is she uses this measurement so that no one can actually square their blocks accurately (you need a 1/16 and 1/32 mark for some of them) so if they don't work she blames you.

    Last time I asked for squaring information she told me it should come out to whatever. She LIKES wonky blocks. This is one of the reasons I will never take a class from this particular place even though it is close to home.

  9. #9
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    When cutting a square into four triangles - QSTs - theoretically, add 1.25 inches to the finished size. (I would add 1-3/8 inches for a bit of wiggle room)

    When cutting a square into two triangles - HSTs - theoretically, add 7/8 inch to the finished size. (I would add 1 inch for a bit of wiggle room)

    It's easier for me to trim off a smidge than to try to work with skimpy square units.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10
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    This is good information to know. My directions for my block told me to cut my QST's from a 4 3/4 inch block. I now am seeing that once again I should have trusted my instinct and made the block out of paper first to check her directions. After 9 months you would think I'd learn. In my defense, I made this pattern before in "normal" measurements so I knew how it went together. Silly me for trying to give the benefit of the doubt.

    Finishing this darn quilt is now a matter of pure stubbornness on my part. Most of the other people quit months ago. December is the last block.

  11. #11
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    4 1/8 is a odd size, usually they're 4 or 4 1/2, not 4 1/8. If the size is 4", I would cut my squares 5" for my hst then square them up. Everyone says to add 7/8", I just add 1" and square them up.

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    These aren't HST they are squares made from 4 quarter square triangles (QST). I agree that the 4 1/8 is really goofy but this person REALLY seems to like the 4 1/8 thing. Because it is a BOM and I am trying to fit all the blocks together at the end of the year, I am trying to follow her weird pattern (bad directions and all).

    To assemble, you sew two QST into a HST. Then sew two HSTs together to make a 4 1/8 inch square.

  13. #13
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    Really strange, you can make qst really easy also, adding 1 1/4 to the size of the square you want. Never had any squares,hst,qst or actually anything that size. Maybe, she made a mistake in the pattern?

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    She made a mistake months ago and instead of fixing that one mistake announced that we were going to make things 4 1/8 inch square (but she couldn't explain to anyone how to square a block). Feel my frustration.

    My husband calls this the "ugly quilt" because it is flat out ugly. I took a quilting class because of this and found out it really wasn't just me. I learned a LOT from my class (taken at another facility). Things like it really IS important to measure accurately, piece with an accurate 1/4 inch seams, square your blocks, etc.

    I'm finishing the darn thing because I'm not a quitter. The thing that frustrates me is that new quilters are trying to do this BOM, can't figure it out, no one at the LQS has a clue what this woman is doing so won't help, and the new quilter quits. I am amazed the place stays in business with this kind of "advertising". I think I need a lot of chocolate now.

  15. #15
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    This method works best for me.
    Quote Originally Posted by texas granny
    when I started quilting and doing 1/2 Tringles the 7/8 was hard for me so i would go to the next one up and then trim them down

  16. #16
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    I also am amazed that they stay in business.

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    I appreciate everyone's help. I usually know better than to just cut fabric for any of the blocks from this LQS BOM. I usually make them out of paper first. This is what I get for thinking I knew what I was doing.

    My new theory is that people have to buy fabric to remake the blocks that don't work out due to bad directions which boost sales at this shop. They do not do any sales, discounts (as far as I know), etc. After this is finished I won't be back.

  18. #18
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    Lab Fairy make sure you let the shop owner know what this teacher is doing. Owners have enough trouble making it without having a teacher run off her patrons.
    Most shop will give you a discount on the day the group meet. be sure to check that out

  19. #19
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    She knows. It doesn't seem to make an impact which is the sad part. She actually told me no one squares their blocks and I was silly to worry about it.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by lab fairy
    She knows. It doesn't seem to make an impact which is the sad part. She actually told me no one squares their blocks and I was silly to worry about it.
    Well after the BOM is over look for a different shop there are plenty good ones out there.

  21. #21
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    That's my plan. If I wasn't so stubborn, I'd have quit working on this one long ago.

  22. #22
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    just make the adjustments you know you nned to do and get it finished. Quilt it and give it away and let it be you badge of
    courage for finishing the quilt you hate
    Is there any way to finish the quilt with out the next 3 month of fabric. or do you get the bulk of the fabric in the 12 th month

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by lab fairy
    I'm fairly new to quilting and doing a BOM with a LQS in my area. I should know better than to trust the cutting and measuring instructions by now. They haven't been right yet. But here goes...

    If I want a 4 1/8 square block made from 4 quarter square triangles how big should the squares the QST's come from be? My instructions told me to cut 4 QST from 4 3/4 inch squares and sew them together. I'm supposed to get a 4 1/8 inch block from that? I only get a 4 inch block. What am I doing wrong?
    I usually make my squares either 4 inches for a 31/2 and a 5inch for a 41/2. What I do is then cut the block down to the required size.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by texas granny
    just make the adjustments you know you nned to do and get it finished. Quilt it and give it away and let it be you badge of
    courage for finishing the quilt you hate
    Is there any way to finish the quilt with out the next 3 month of fabric. or do you get the bulk of the fabric in the 12 th month
    Each "block" is actually made in two months. The total of the two month's efforts will supposedly make an 18.5 inch block. This was the "NOT MENTIONED" part when I started. I made a semi-normal 12.5 inch block in January. It wasn't until February that I found out about adding to January's block to make it 18.5 inches. It was my very first quilt block so I expected it to be so-so. Unfortunately, the piecing improved but the rest went downhill fast.

    I went back to the LQS today to explain the problem hoping to save others from doing the same thing. I couldn't believe it when the person there told me me there was nothing wrong with the cutting instructions. I should adjust my seams (to less than 1/8 inch) to make the block measure right. In my opinion, if you have to do that something is very wrong with your block.

    I explained that I don't do poor workmanship and would rather remake my block. She started pulling fabrics off the shelf and told me she did not want to look in the back for the matching fabric that was left from making the kits. You've got to be kidding right? So here I am, different fabric, starting over. I did not bother to ask about the off-white or blue colors. Her stomping around once was enough.

    I have no idea what the whole quilt is supposed to look like but I have no clue what to do but stick it out. Besides now I think of it as a teaching moment on my part. I'm teaching these people how to COMMUNICATE effectively and politely. I also feel I owe it to my fellow BOM'ers who are writing down notes every time I ask questions like what size should that really be... I think they are afraid to ask.

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