Explore the Possibilities of This Versatile Quilt Unit!
Have you ever noticed how many quilt designs are created from simple half-square triangles? Once you start looking you’ll realize there are thousands of creative ways you can use these popular units, both by themselves and mixed with squares.
Simple designs can be made from just two fabrics, typically a light and a dark. Use several prints of similar colors for a more scrappy look or mix it up by using several colors.
Then consider scale. Most half-square triangles (HSTs) are on the small side with several used to create a block or many for a full quilt. However, if you super-size the HSTs you can quickly create an eye-catching throw or bed quilt.
Quilt from Simple Simon & Co.
There are several ways to make HSTs, the most common starting with two squares of fabric. If you don’t have a finished design in mind (or even if you do), you can make a few HSTs every day from leftover squares. Not only will you be working to keep scraps in check, but in the end, you’ll have fun arranging the HSTs into a scrappy quilt.
To help you get started creating your own unique quilts, Cara Stromness, writing for Madam Sew, has put together an excellent article showing 13 quilt blocks that can be made from HSTs.
She also provides instructions for making HSTs from squares of fabric.
You’ll notice that all of the block designs are simply different configurations of HSTs. Combine several of any of the blocks for a simple quilt. Or use several block designs to make a sampler quilt. More complex designs can be made by configuring HSTs into one large block.
Photo from Blossom Heart Quilts.
Another great resource is
Jeni includes three ways to make HSTs, charts for producing them in any size, and 12 quilt patterns.
“Each section features three bold projects incorporating color theory, effective fabric selection, playing with scale and piecing HSTs into larger units to be sub-cut. Use the final three patterns to mix and match your favorite blocks from the gallery of 60 HST block variations.”
You can get this excellent book here.
Image Source: The photo at the top of the page is from Blossom Heart Quilts.
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