Monday, May 30, 2011

The HRT ..... Half rectangle triangle

The best idea I've had so far regarding this new quilt for my son  (see this post to see a photo of inspiration piece) was to do a trial block. I learned a lot.

There were several reasons to make a practice block. The first was to validate the color combo was the right one - the initial thought here was Royal and Stone. After making the top half of a block in that color combo, I made the bottom half in Royal and Gray. I like this combination better.
The second reason was to help me appreciate how much fabric I will need. I do not own any design software - just graph paper, a pencil and a big eraser. With this block, I now know  I need roughly a 1/4 a yard of each color for each 12" block. The quilt has 10 blocks with lots of color changes in it.  Overall, I think I will need 6-7 yards of each color for this XL Twin quilt to fit a dorm room bed.
The final reason was to give me a sense of how difficult this would be to construct. I experimented a few times to figure how how best to make a HRT - half rectangle triangle that finished at 1 1/2 by 2 1/2.
My plan was to chain piece and trim out all these HRT ahead of time and then the assembly would be easy or at least easier.  As cute as these are, I had issues with the bottom row which required assembly of 11 pieces for a 12 inch row.  Something clearly went horribly wrong - either my seams were not all uniform width or I screwed up the cutting or both.  
If you've hung with me through this long post, thank you. I love using my blog to record my quilting progress even if only for me.

And just because I need to mix this up a bit, I've re-trimmed my Summer Breeze HST to the required 4" and had fun assembling more blocks.
Happy Stitching!

PS - if anyone has tips here to help me with this HRT challenge, send them my way.  Google suggests there may be a ruler or template that will help.


  1. I love watching your design process... and think you're right about switching from Stone to Grey.

    The quilt is going to be stunning...

  2. I also tried to sew half-square rectangles. Don't remember why, but got the same google results that you seem to have gotten. So and So said that you need her special ruler. Great. Don't have it, don't want it.

    Paging through an old book, that for the life of me I can not find, i did find a method for doing HSR.

    You take two rectangels cut to the size you want. On one, mark 1/8 " in from the top left corner and 1/8' from the opposite diagonal corner, the bottom right. Place your second rectangle, right sides together, and line up the edge of you second rectangle with the 1/8th " marks. Sew a quarter inch seam along the edge and flip press. Cut away the bottom rectangle part.

    For the points to go the other direction, mark the top right and the bottom left 1/8" in from the edge.

    Hope that helps. Will keep an eye out for the magazine article or book where I found this info.

  3. That quilt your planning looks amazing!! Such a good idea to do a trial block. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, you made some really interesting observations. I've only sewed wonky rectangle triangles so I don't think that'll help.


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