Friday, August 22, 2014

Paperless Thangles {Tutorial}

Many of us have a love hate relationship with Half Square Triangles (HSTs). The fact that countless quilt patterns can be made from just HSTs makes them quite appealing. But making them can be QUITE the chore. There are several ways to try to diminish the work, but alas they don't make themselves.

I've found that you really just have to pick your poison when it comes to making HSTs. And today, I'm going to share with you a poison, er I mean a paperless Thangles tutorial!

A Vintage Christmas

Have you ever tried Thangles before? They are really fantastic. I first used Thangles when I made this red and white ocean waves quilt. I really think using Thangles to make HST works beautifully when making several (hundreds?) HSTs from a limited fabric palette. While I loved Thangles because I literally made around 400 HSTs in a few hours, I then had to remove all the papers from those 400 some HSTs. Which took a long long long time. Thus in the end, I'm not sure I saved any time at all.

Then my friend Amy suggested that I just mark my fabrics with my own grid. So I did. And that worked well. So that's what I'm sharing with you today.

Paperless thangles tutorial

I'm going to be showing you how to make thangles without paper. In this example, I made 40 HSTs, 2 1/2'' finished, in about 30 minutes (apart from trimming). I use 2 colors - Kona White and Kona Wasabi. In general you will be marking the fabric with a box grid and diagonals, using the diagonals as sewing guides, and then cutting along all the marked lines.

After the tutorial there's a chart with a bunch of different HSTs sizes for you to pin and save for later.

Step 1: Cut a single or double width of fabric depending on how many HSTs you need to make. Since I am making a bunch of HSTs, I am going to show a double width.

For 2 1/2'' finished HSTs I cut a strip 6 3/4'' x WOF (Width of Fabric, selvage to selvage) from each of my white and wasabi. (If you are curious that math is 3 7/8'' x 2 for a double width.) Then I cut the widths at the fold and separate the two pieces. (Note: to maximize the number of HSTs you can get from a WOF don't cut it in half.) So now, I have 2 wasabi pieces and 2 white pieces.

(Not shown but for a single width, cut a strip 3 3/8'' x WOF. It should yield at least 20 HSTs.)

Paperless thangles tutorial

Step 2: Mark the grid on the two pieces of darker fabric. In my case, I marked on the wasabi pieces. 

First mark the vertical line, which will be parallel to either side of the fabric and for 2 1/2'' finished HSTs will be 3 3/8'' away from either side, or the exact middle. (Skip this part for a single width.)

Paperless thangles tutorial

Then mark the horizontal lines. For 2 1/2'' finished HSTs draw a line 3 3/8'' away from the edge of the fabric.

Paperless thangles tutorial

Then mark a second horizontal line 3 3/8'' from the first line.

Paperless thangles tutorial

For finished 2 1/2'' HSTs continue marking horizontal lines 3 3/8'' away from the previous line until you've used up all the space on your strip.

Paperless thangles tutorial

Tip: Use a fabric marking pen that erases easily just in case you were to mess up. Ask me how I know. :)

Paperless thangles tutorial

And finally, complete your grid by adding diagonal lines through all the boxes. (I wised up and used a darker pen to show you.)

Paperless thangles tutorial

Step 3: Then pair colors right sides together and pin. Remember I'm pairing white and wasabi. Tip: Pin away from the marked lines.

Paperless thangles tutorial

Step 4: Sew 1/4'' away from the diagonal lines on both sides. Tip: Because you will be cutting into your seams, decrease your stitch length so that the stitches are less likely to unravel.

Paperless thangles tutorial

I'd like to take the time to say that I love the color Wasabi, but it doesn't photograph with my sewing notions does it?!

Paperless thangles tutorial

Once all the sewing is finished your strip will look like this.

Paperless thangles tutorial

On this darker color you can see the seams better. (would it have been easier to change thread? Perhaps, but how else would I have know that Wasabi + Everglade = not the best?)

Paperless thangles tutorial

Step 5: Cut along all the marked lines. And tada! Forty(!) HSTs in no time.

Like this:

Paperless thangles tutorial

Or, like this:

Paperless thangles tutorial

Step 6: Depending on your pressing preference, press seams either open or toward the darker fabric.

Step 7: For maximum accuracy, trim each HST down to 2 1/2''.

As with any HST triangle technique, paperless thangles has it's downsides. One being you have to do some math to figure out where to mark your grids. I've tried to make it a bit easier by making this table of common HST sizes for you.


Now, who will invent something that trims HSTs for us?!

Paperless thangles tutorial

Thanks for stopping by! I'll answer questions in the comments...

Monday, August 18, 2014

My magazine debut {Love Patchwork & Quilting}

While I'm mostly a book gal, there are a few magazines I love. One of which is Love Patchwork & Quilting. I think it's the fun mix of home decor, lifestyle and of course patchwork and quilting.

Wildflower Pillow

I am so honored to let y'all know that my Wildflower pillow is featured in Issue 11. Yah!

Oh, and lookie there, that's my project in a magazine. Weeeee!  @lovequiltingmag

I had to recreate some of my pillow for step out shots, so I had a few extra blocks. Needless to say, these singular Wildflower blocks make up the cutest mini mini quilts. If you just want a taste of English Paper Piecing. Sometimes, just a little of something can go a long way! (Trying to tell myself about that little taste of chocolate right now. A little is good right?!)

Wildflower blocks!

If you are interested in making a wildflower block or two or nine, the templates are available over at Love Patchwork and Quilting.

Wildflower blocks!

Thanks for reading!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Emailing with the Tattooed Quilter

Hi guys!

I'm featured on "emailing with the tattooed quilter" today. Chris (he's the guy with the tattoos) is relativiely new on the blog circuit, but he's already established himself with this lovely series. I'd love it if you'd pop over there to hear me wax on about my most embarrassing moment and other quilty philosophies.

Today on "emailing with the tattooed quilter" is me! To read my interview hop over to @nyc_christopher 's blog. (Links in profiles)

Read more interviews and stay and check out Chris's blog and quilts. He's a SewvivorThis quilt might be my favorite of his. This one too. And, aside from quilts, he also has some thought provoking posts.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Nothing at all

Sitting down to write a blog post, I couldn't think of anything. Aside from the makings of a busy but everyday life, nothing has happened. Nothing is so good, so sweet and such a blessing. Thank you God!

Just a few slow stitches on this mini that could have been done by now.

Slow stitches  on a mini quilt. You'd think it'd go faster.

My daughter made a quick and squishy pillow last weekend. I loved helping her make it. She did such a great job.

Mini squishy pillow ❤️all done! #sewingclass #homeschool #summerfun #annamariahorner

I've been getting us ready to go back to school in 3 short weeks.

Annnnnnd nearly all 1st grade books. #homeschool

Seeing all those books is both intimidating and exciting. I should go back to last year's book photos and see if I said those exact same words.

Getting ready for a new school year. This is nearly all of the 3rd grade books we need. That there is a bunch o' knowledge.

And Sally gave me such a lovely handmade gift. Such a sweetie she is.

Look at the prettiness @sallykeller814 made for me. Thank you girl! I love it.

I'm so glad I sat down to write this blog post about nothing at all. Turns out I have a lot to be thankful for in my nothing at all.

Hope you all are enjoying your week!


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