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Easy, no waste Granny Square block tutorial

Easy, no waste Granny Square block tutorial

Old 05-24-2017, 02:02 PM
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Default Easy, no waste Granny Square block tutorial

I am currently making a Granny Square quilt to use up some of my 2" squares from the scrap bin. I scoured the internet for tutorials, but came up with (I think) a simpler way of making the block that any that I saw. I'm sure others have thought of this, but I did not see anything like it. If someone else has posted this anywhere before, my apologies... (Note: You can use any size square you'd like, I just happen to be using up 2". This is more of a guide than an actual pattern.)

The first method involves placing 1 square in the middle, 4 around it, 8 around that, then 12 white (or other "background" color) around that. Like this...[ATTACH=CONFIG]573571[/ATTACH]

Then, you proceed to turn that block into a square by cutting off the 12 outer background squares so that they are now triangles. Like this...[ATTACH=CONFIG]573572[/ATTACH]

Which leaves you with 12 small waste triangles (yuck) and all edges are now bias. Double Yuck!!

I got to doing the math (I'm weird like that), and figured out that 12 wasted triangles per block, at 80 blocks equals 6 wasted 2" squares x 80. That's 4 square inches x 6 x 80= 1,920 square inches. A yard of fabric (36x42) is roughly 1,512 square inches. So, my little lap quilt was gonna waste over a yard of background fabric! There had to be a better way!!

So, the "no-waste" tutorials have you making 12 setting triangles per block; not something I was looking forward to doing...

I had my fabric squares on the design board (nothing sewn yet)...
and looked at sewing everything in long, diagonal rows, but knew I would flub up somewhere and sew squares together wrong and end up ripping. Then, it occurred to me that I was looking at a bunch of 9 patches like this...[ATTACH=CONFIG]573574[/ATTACH]

So, I am treating the center 9 squares like a 9 patch, then when I have the final layout the way I want it, I will sew the 9 patch between them. That secondary 9P will have those white background squares and the side square from each color block that it will be touching. Then, sew the 9P's together, and the only setting triangles will be around the edges of the quilt as each block will be on point.

I am still making the initial blocks, but as I do each step, I will post the "how-to" pictures. Most of you will be able to take off from this point though.

This is a great scrap buster pattern, just like the initial granny square crocheted afghan which allows you to use up those tiny balls of leftover yarns. I am mostly keeping the same fabrics in each round, but occasionally I have only a couple of squares left of some of the fabrics, so that round will be all the same color, but not the same fabric. My self-imposed challenge with this quilt is to not try to "match" every color perfectly, but to allow myself to play and use some more daring color combos.
Attached Thumbnails gs-tute-1.jpg   gs-tute-2.jpg   gs-tute-3.jpg   gs-tute-4.jpg  

Last edited by QuiltnNan; 02-21-2018 at 10:46 AM.
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Old 05-26-2017, 05:19 PM
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Default Easy, no waste Granny Square block tutorial Part 2

Here is part 2 of the Granny Square tutorial...
I have the main 9 patches put together, so now it's time to sew the secondary 9 patches. It is very easy to lose your place and sew them together wrong (ask me how I know...I actually have only sewn 3 together wrong so far). It's handy to keep your design board close by and only work on 1 at a time. I laid out the 4 that surround the secondary blocks so that I could see which colors went where and worked from the top left across each row.[ATTACH=CONFIG]573677[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]573678[/ATTACH]
The rows are numbered 1 through 9 top to bottom. The letters are from left to right. Keep doing this until you have all the secondary blocks done. You will notice that you take the first 2 from rows 1 and 2 1A, 1B, 2A and 2B. Then it will be 1B, 1C, 2B and 2C.

FYI, that blue leaf print in the 2nd picture is not an accident , but some in some of the rounds I have used a similar color, different print.

Part 3 will be how to make the setting triangles around the edges to make the quilt square. They're not your typical triangles, since each one will need to have a couple of colored squares in them to finish out the pattern.

If anything is unclear, please ask and I will try and help. It really makes sense once you get going and can see it for yourself.

Thanks for looking and happy sewing!
Attached Thumbnails gs-tute-5.jpg   gs-tute-6.jpg  
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Old 05-26-2017, 06:12 PM
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:33 AM
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thanks for taking the time to post this great tutorial
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:35 AM
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I'm putting this on "the list" thanks
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Old 05-27-2017, 05:20 AM
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I all makes sense after I study what you did. Very good idea.
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:36 PM
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Thanks for posting this (with pictures) I have never seen this block done this way, I'm off to give it a try!
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:46 PM
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Thank you so much! I'm looking forward to seeing Part 3!
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Old 05-27-2017, 04:54 PM
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Part 3 coming soon. I am almost done making the secondary 9P's and should be able to get the setting triangles with pictures figured out tomorrow. Hopefully some nice QB expert will merge the 3 together or tell me how😉
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Old 05-28-2017, 04:22 AM
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I think I would make the initial 9-patch and pin the four extra squares onto that and continue with all those 9-patches until there were enough. Then they could be laid out so you liked the order of the colors, pick up a square from each nine patch around, keep them in the correct order, and make the 9-patch with the background squares.

I think I could get excited about doing a Granny Square quilt this way.
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