Monday, 31 October 2016

Farmer's Wife Sampler - Whirlpool

Lots of triangles in this week's block, and if you've been reading my Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt posts you'll probably be able to guess how I cut them all out - with my 45/90 degree triangle ruler of course! This HST-filled block is called Whirlpool.

The beauty of using a ruler or template to cut out your triangles is that you don't need to trim your unit to size after you've sewn it together.

I know you can make multiple half-square triangle blocks at once by sewing squares, rather than cutting triangles, and many will argue that it's quicker, but for some reason I find I am more accurate when I cut and sew triangles, and I don't see where the time is saved if I need to trim each and every HST unit, or mark sewing lines.

Even so, I don't stick to just one method for HSTs - whatever works best with the size of fabric I've got - or what I fancy at the time - is what I will do. (Mini blocks are different though - I always make my HSTs bigger than needed and trim to size to ensure accuracy.)

Do you have a preferred method for making half-square triangle blocks? Let me know in the comments.

Bye for now x


  1. I agree with you. It all depends on what size blocks I am making at the time. Love the look of your whirlpool block.

    1. Thanks very much. It's great to have a variety of techniques to choose from, isn't it?

  2. Your block is beautifully and very accurately pieced. I've been following the Modern HST Sampler QAL this year so had plenty of practice making 2, 4 or 8 hst in one go. I prefer the methods where the bias edges don't get exposed at the edge of the blocks. How do you manage not to stretch your biased edges? Do you ever use starch?

    1. Thank you Allison, I always do my best to be accurate - it makes things so much easier in the long run.

      I like to make HSTs where the hypotenuse is on the bias, never the shorter edges. I make sure to let the machine pull the fabric when I sew, and when I press the finished units I do it parallel to the straight of grain to avoid stretching. I occasionally use starch, but not often.


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