Saturday, June 19, 2010

Making triangles

In Simple Shapes Spectacular Quilts, there are 4 quilts based on triangles. “Clay Tiles” and “Indigo Points” are the same quilt, except “Indigo Points” has a border around each block of 9 half-square triangles. In these two quilts, the dark triangles are all set in the same direction, sort of like sailboats on the sea. The directions say to cut 504 light triangles and 504 dark triangles. The finished squares are only 2 inches. That’s 504 very small bias seams you would be sewing if you made the blocks that way. There is, of course, an easier way: make half-square triangles. Here is a good tutorial on how to make them:

Because I already had a stack of 5” charm squares, I cut my additional fabric into 5-inch strips, then cut the strips into 5-inch squares. Then, left to right in the picture below, on half the squares, I drew a pencil line from one corner to the opposite. I sewed a quarter inch away from each side of the line, then cut the squares in half on the line and pressed the seams open.

I made a lot of triangles for this quilt and ultimately rejected some of them because the fabric didn’t blend well, including a navy blue floral and a tan floral shown in the picture. I never waste time worrying over what to do with rejected blocks. It’s part of the creative experience! (I’ll probably use them for a baby quilt for my guild’s layette project. We make baby quilts and donate them to the county health department to be included in layettes for new mothers who might not otherwise be able to afford new items for their babies.)

I kept 120 of the half-square triangles and decided to set my triangles like pinwheels, alternating light and dark. Many of my fabrics are in the medium-range tone, so the light and dark setting is not always obvious. The quilt measures 10 squares by 12 squares.

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