Sep 20, 2012

today's hint/Mary's Triangles EDITED

The note I scribbled on the computer printout says it all.   Actually I thought it looked even worse last night as it looked as though I had about zip seam allowance on the "Mary's Triangle" section side.  Turned out a few threads were tucked under a bit so it is not quite as bad as I thought.   I think the background is a tad too dark anyway.  Give it another whirl.

I mentioned yesterday that Marti Michell had a suggestion for doing those pieced  half square triangles comprised of a square and two small half square triangles.  Billie Lauder has a quick quilt trick for doing this which I have done in the past.  I believe that she borrowed the process from Sally Schnieder.  In fact, I KNOW she did as her booklet Quick Quilt Tricks, 2nd edition attributes the technique to Scheider's Scrap Mania published in 1994 from That Patchwork Place (now Martingale & Company).

The name "Mary's Triangles" refers to this unit and is sometimes called Flying Geese or Shaded Four Patch.  It is a shortcut method and you don't actually have to cut and sew triangles at all.  There is no fussing with matching points or hoping that all your blocks will turn out the same size.  It is made with squares and rectangles.  Sounds pretty good, huh?  In retrospect I probably should have tried to figure out how to make it work Schneider's way, LOL.   Sometimes YOU do see the variation with the same sized small half square triangle in the corner.   This is a more common element in blocks than you would think!

Block A

Block B

ED. NOTE  take a look at THIS quilt from jaybird quilts----the whole quilt is nothing but Mary's Triangles!

There is a perfectly wonderful tutorial for doing it Schneider's Way at this SITE trailtotreadleonia.  By all means try that out whenever you have a bunch of these units to make.  The book Triangle Tricks:  One Easy Unit, Dozens of Gorgeous Quilts  has charts worked out for cutting sizes for blocks A & B in finished sizes from 2 inch to 12 inch.  Worth checking out in your guild library, public library or your own personal guild library.

So why didn't I do it this way?  Frankly I didn't even think about it and I had just made a strawberry patch block three of these same type half units.  Here is a link to a good example of what I was talking about on starwoodquilter.  As an aside, Susan linked her block choices for her version of FWIS with her grandmother's diary entries the year she turned 21.  Fun reading!

I told you the block is Crazy Anne.  It is a 5 x 5 grid.  Slightly odd, in between size in other words as opposed to the standard strip size of 1.5, 2, 3.5 inch sizes you would associate with a 6 inch finished block.  Do the math?  Yeah, I could but going to.  My head hurts already and math was NEVER my best subject!

Instead Michell suggested cutting 2 squares and piecing them as shown below.  The bottom strip was cut to the same width as the squares but the length of the two squares sewn together.  I started with 2 1/4 inch squares and the rectangle was 2 1/4 by 4 if numbers will help explain that, LOL.

Michell of course wanted you do the cutaway with one of her triangle units.  I don't think that the S set contains what I needed to do that especially now that this would NOT fit in a 6 inch finished block.   I use a Trudie Hughes Big Mama and Big Daddy rulers which has these nice 45 degree marks.  Line up the ruler over the sides of the square and cut 1/4 inch away.  A Jodi Barrows Square in a Square ruler would do the same thing.  I think.  I got one of those on the pegboard but I think it is buried below a few others and I am being lazy---or more like need to head out to the kitchen and throw that fish in the oven!

Anyway, I trimmed it 1/4 inch away creating the shape I needed below and then cut a square the same size this finished.  I miscut it first and then cut a 4 7/8 inch square in half diagonally and nubbed off the points with the Judy Martin point trimmer tool.

I DID get my twister square prepped yesterday and assembled this whatever it is going to be--,maybe a placemat, maybe a wall hanging.  I thought about quilting it up for Tuesday but why?  No rush.

 Quilt show is up and I don't have to go back till Saturday afternoon.  Thankfully that went a whole lot more smoothly than in years past.  Some of the potential snags were averted ahead of time by having a 10 days lead time for entries.  People got the message about having sleeves on the entries excluding maybe two of them Jane said.   They still messed up about a pillow case for each entry but we can deal with that.  They also had a chance to pin up the extra long bed quilt entries ahead of time.  We will do take down as they did at Friendship Quilters---put the pillow cases by the quilt entry and plunk them in their bag right as they come down---just need a catcher and a folder helper.  Worked great!

Well, a pan of tilapia is waiting along with a box of risotto and whatever veggie I want to fix to go with it.  I'm off and back to the machine after we eat.  Got a husband raring to get back on the lawn mower to finish up the yard and reminding me that daylight is burning.

And sew it goes-------


  1. Your "Mary's Triangle" tip/method is similar to the one I used on my LHQSQ Block #49 - Aunt Dinah. When I hit that "unit" in my sequence - I checked my copy of Billie Lauder's book. I LOVE her tricks - but I don't like drawing lines on my fabric - and I like to sew BEFORE I cut sometimes - so I did it just a bit differently. SO many ways to do the same thing - ;))

  2. great link to the treadle method...I made these blocks using those directions on a hand crank block day I need to put those blocks together! as usual you have done an outstanding job of giving great information on the how to..!


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