Thursday, February 7, 2013

Saving Scraps: Half Square Triangles

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I’ve been using this trick to save my scraps and make half square triangles while I’m at it.  It’s a great method to use when your adding stitch-n-flip corners to a block.  

Lay the square in the corner of your block with the pencil line like so:

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And stitch down the line as you normally would.  Instead of trimming and throwing that whole corner away, sew a second line 1/2" away from the previous seam towards the corner like so:

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Then cut in between the 2 seams:

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Press, and you’ve got your block with the triangle corner, and a half square triangle.

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The half square triangle will be 1" smaller than the original corner square you sewed on.  So this corner square was 4", and my half square triangle is 3".   This is a great trick for patterns like Pow Wow where the corner squares are large and it creates a lot of waste. 

Then you’ll have lots of little tiny HST’s to make another project!!!  Because all you needed was another project right??!  ;)

42 comments:

**nicke... said...

good tip. i try to do this often.

Charity said...

Ah, very clever. =)

Dolly said...

That's a wonderful idea !

PeggyinNO said...

Sew thoughtful of you to share this! Thanks!

Melanie said...

I should do this. I always "need" more projects too :)

Cindy said...

What a great idea!! Thanks for sharing!

Janarama said...

Fantastic idea ... very clever!

Mary Grace McNamara said...

Great idea to share! I did this once with a pattern I was making and the leftover HSTs were 1 inch! I used them to make mug rugs! There was as much fabric in the seam allowances on the back as there was on the front!

MGM

Amy Friend said...

Ugh, this makes me feel wasteful. I keep thinking I should do this!

Noela said...

What a great idea. Hugs....

CitricSugar said...

I do this religiously - saves so much time and so many scraps… I try to remember to do it when I miter my bindings, too. :-)

Kris said...

Love this!

Kate said...

I do the same thing, especially when making flying geese. Just need to work out what to do with all the HSTs!

UKMUMINUSA said...

I do the same too, now I just need some ideas what to do with them all!

Zara said...

What a fabulous tip! Thanks!

Rebecca Grace said...

That's a great idea! I am nowhere near organized enough for that, but I think it's cool anyway. Like people who not only cook Thanksgiving from scratch, but also have gourmet casseroles and panini sandwiches planned for all of their turkey leftovers. You go, girl! :-)

Joanie's Quilts said...

Great tip! I love finding ways that doesn't waste!

Carla said...

Right! It's a two for one deal ; )

Live a Colorful Life said...

I need to start doing this. It's a great idea. Because if they aren't already sewn together, and just trimmed off, I have found that I will probably NEVER sew them together...

Happier Than A Bird Quilts said...

I do this too. I hate the waste so bad!!
I made a baby quilt from my Swoon scraps.

trish said...

This is so cool. I will do this when making the pow wow quilt. :o)
Have a great weekend. Trish

Lindsay_Loris said...

Such a good idea - thanks for posting it:). I've always been put off patterns which seem to create so much triangular waste but not now!

Babby58 said...

When I made my son and daughter-in-law a quilt two Christmases ago, I had a lot of half-square triangles left over. I used this trick and turned all the extras into a matching quilt for their pug!! It was a win-win situation!

Chris S said...

Thanks for the great tip!

Franziska said...

I made this when making my Swoon blocks and will possibly have enough HSTs for a zig zag pillow matching my Swoon quilt once it will be finished. I mark two lines that I sew on instead of one but the rest and the effect is the same. I read this tip at Fromthebluechair.

Denise SA said...

I think this is a great idea thank you for sharing

Colette McDonald said...

I was just getting ready to start a project that use that technique and was thinking there has got to be an easier way to save and use those HST that I trim. Thanks for the hint.

Jude Jones said...

Hi Al, I am glad to see you still have the new blue scissors still in working order, ha ha. Mine don't usually last that long. =)

Meredith said...

What a genius idea! Thank you for sharing!

Sherryl said...

That's such a great idea. I never save all those little triangles because if they're really small they can be such a pain to work with... but I could totally find a use for a bunch of little half-square triangles! Thanks for the tip. Why didn't I think of that?

Cindy~ Heart and Sew Inspirations said...

I learned this tip in a quilting class. I thought it was so clever and do this when I can. I have quite a few, now just need to come up with a project for these small hst. What do you do with yours?

Elle said...

I always do this! Between this and using enders and leaders and chain piecing, you can end up making multiple quilts at once in almost the same amount of time (and save money!). One other tip to add: Press the block for the first time to set the stitches before cutting off the hst - cuts down on the ironing time, too! The one thing I've learned, though, is be sure to buy some extra background fabric. I have tons of wonderful teeny tiny chevrons I put together from tiny hsts, but I can't get any more of the great white background fabric that I used, so my awesome design idea went by the wayside! I'll have to rethink it!

amy smart said...

Uh! So smart! Why didn't I think of this 104 triangles ago (last week)? I will do it faithfully from now on.

Carie said...

That's a really great idea thank you. I'll have to remember that next time I'm doing triangles.

Lappedamen said...

Thank you for sharing. It's a good tip, but I don't need a new project right now. Happy sewing!

Gina E. said...

What a neat idea! Thanks for that - now all I need is remember to do it!

Amber said...

Brilliant! Thanks for the tip!

Amber

sonia said...

I ususally sew on both sides of the diagonal line. I made a "hugs and kisses" quilt and with the scraps I made my "pinwheels galore". Great tip!

autumnesf said...

I just finished a queen sized quilts using mostly left over scraps turned into hst's that I did for a year. I do have the advantage of having a go cutter so it made it real easy to cut a stack of scraps at a time. Just over a year I had enough to throw together a quilt for a wedding gift when I suddenly needed one!

Stephanie said...

what a great tip. i've seen this before in a quilting class i took, but had forgotten about it. it's nice to be reminded of wonderful ideas.

Donna said...

What a great idea. I've kept so many of these triangles. now I'll go sew them together to make them much more manageable for future use. Thanks!

Millie said...

I should do this too. Thanks for sharing.

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