Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Making Half Square Triangles (Even If You Know How)

One of the classes that I was most interested in when I became a seamstress was Professional Efficiency.  I have used many of the skills that I learned and am always interested in new efficient methods.  This is my latest favorite!  

I am designing a new project that requires many Half Square Triangles (HSTs).  While I am working on them I will show you this awesome method.  I am making HSTs out of a Charm Pack (5" Squares). The finished HST blocks will be 4 1/2".   From one pair of charm squares you will make 2 HSTs with no waste.  This process allows you to sew HSTs without drawing lines through the center of your squares from point to point. 
Place a ruler under your presser foot with the needle placed at the 1/4" mark.   Drop the presser foot to keep the ruler tight.  Line it up nice and straight.
Using Painter's Tape put a strip along the edge of the ruler, front and back of the presser foot.   
Place a pair of Charm Squares right-sides-together.  In this project I am using one light and one dark square.  Sew your seam keeping the point of the square lined up along the edge of the painters tape.  Start by lining up the point to the edge of the tape behind the presser foot.  The above photo is a view from the back of the sewing machine as the point goes along the edge of the tape.


As you work your way along the seam, now line the front point of the square along the edge of the painters tape.  This assures that your seam is 1/4" from the center of the square. 

 Chain piece your HST blocks. 

 Use the same process to sew the seam on the other side of center. 


 Cut the 2 halves apart using your rotary cutter. 

 Here is a nice pile of HST blocks in a flash!
Press and trim to 4 1/2" to your desired level of perfection.

Check out this pattern that began with HSTs!
Split Triangle Rows