Enjoy this article from the AccuQuilt Blog Archives!
My name is Jennifer and today I'm going to show you how it easy it is to use the GO! Half Square Triangles. I love quilting and all things fabric. After a series of athletic injuries and surgeries, I needed a relatively safe hobby so I decided to try quilting. As it turned out, I was one of those people who didn’t discover the extent of my creativity until I picked out some fabrics, picked up a needle and thread, and made my first quilt. From then on I was hooked and quilting has become a passion in my life. I love to write and I love to quilt so starting a quilting blog was the perfect answer.
Half Square Triangles as Easy as Can Be!
I have been quilting for almost five years. I wouldn’t call myself a traditional quilter or a modern quilter but I’m always up for trying something new. I jumped at the chance to use an AccuQuilt and found myself with the GO! Baby® Fabric Cutter. The GO! Baby makes cutting so easy. Working full-time and being a full-time mother, the GO! Baby allowed me to cut and finish quilts so much faster.
The first die I knew I had to have was something that would cut triangles in a snap. I was instantly attracted to the half square triangles. They are so versatile with hundreds of block options, so something I would use them frequently.
Some of the best parts of this system are the included dog-eared corners and seam allowance.
It’s easy to cut piles of Half Square Triangles in minutes with the GO! Baby
The half square triangles are easy to sew as they are perfectly cut with a ¼" seam allowance.
AccuQuilt makes it so easy as all the dog ears are cut off the half square triangles. You can simply place two fabrics right sides together and roll it through the GO! Baby. It’s so effortless to cut a pretty pile of perfect triangles. Match the edges and go straight to your sewing machine. Stitch with a ¼" seam allowance and begin chain sewing. Go ahead and press the seam and you have one perfect square with no trimming. How simple is that?
Half Square Triangle Patterns
So let’s broaden our horizons. I love one shape quilts and strong geometric lines. You can simply put together an entire quilt made from nothing but triangles. You can determine how large your project is as you choose how many half square triangles are pieced together vertically and horizontally. This gives you more control over your layout and fabric print arrangement. I went with making rows of triangles and it could not have been easier.
Chain piece pairs and then create 16 rows. You can easily stitch one to another until you have your desired width. I decided to make a skinny wall hanging measuring 36" x 50" using this method. You have to trim the long edges once you have your quilt top pieced but that’s simple to do with a rotary cutter and a ruler.
As another option, you can sew your half square triangles together and set the block on point. This makes for a simple and fun way to play with colors and prints. For more versatility, create simple hourglass units which give the blocks movement and dimension. With so many options, it’s easy to see why half square triangles were my very first choice.
This bed runner combines half square triangles and squares into a fun pattern. It's called the GO! Broken Dishes Bed Runner and can be downloaded for free here. This one allows white to make the triangles pop, but you can give this pattern your own spin on our free GO! Quilt pattern customizer. You can even use your own fabric stash!
Helpful Hint for Using Half Square Triangles
No matter what kind of block you are making with these triangles, piecing with a ¼" seam allowance is the key to making your points match perfectly. Since you don’t have to trim your finished block, part of your work is already done with the edges matching so easy. All that’s left to do is piece precisely.
Jennifer's tutorials have been featured on the Moda Bakeshop, Sew We Quilt, Craftgossip, and One Pretty Thing. She lives with her wonderful and supportive husband and a fabulous daughter. Her daughter is the proud owner of a new sewing machine and both she and Jennifer spend many hours together creating in their sewing studio. Jennifer's husband is her sewing machine “fixer”, a creative second eye, occasional quilt baster, best friend, and the one she falls in love with over and over. They have two beagles, Buddy & Gus, who keep them on our toes all the time.