Quilts and Other Stuff from Frances

Perfecting Half-Square Triangles

At the retreat this past week, I spent some time working on a scrap quilt that I started last year.

The design has LOTS and LOTS of Half-Square triangles and I was looking for a way to make them quickly and accurately!!

My first decision was to use two squares of fabric, sew a line on the diagonal and then discard the other portion of the squares.

I know that technically this wastes fabric but it made use of the 2.5-inch squares that I had already cut and it meant that I didn’t have to do any trimming!!

I started out drawing a line on one of the squares and sewing along that line but that took WAY too long!!

To circumvent the process, I decided to mark the sewing line on my machine using painter’s tape……

I started out with the needle squarely in the corner of the squares…..

I then carefully stitched, making sure that the opposite point followed along the tape edge….

I normally use BOTH hands to guide the squares but one hand had to hold the camera steady!!

Note that I ended with the needle square in the corner!!

The next step was to iron the dark triangle over…..

Trim off the excess fabric…..

And then press it flat!!

Now, I know that there are tools designed for this very purpose…..

…..but it was nice to use something as simple as a piece of tape!!!

And, I LOVE how the quilt is looking now…..

8 thoughts on “Perfecting Half-Square Triangles

  1. You can get 2 triangles from two squares of fabric. Just draw a line diagonally from corner to corner, pin the two squares together. (Same color or different colors). Sew a 1/4 inch line on each side of the drawn line, then take a ruler and cutter and cut along the pencil line. You now have 2 square triangles, one is one color – the other side is the other color.

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