Scrappy Half Square Triangle Quilt Block {And A Bonus}

Friday, September 28, 2018

I'm part of a great little online group of quilters - there are 11 of us - and we have this awesome deal where each month one of us chooses a quilt block that we would like all 10 of the other quilters to make for us!  This is my second year and I've just loved it.  (Pictured above is the block that I had all the gals make for me.  I have not done anything with the blocks yet... but it is going to be a picnic quilt!)

One of the rules is that the block must be a free pattern that can be shared.  My friend Luanne, who is in the group, chose this very fun patchwork quilt.  It is simply made up of half square triangles.  In order to make it easier for everyone to know what she wants for her block I offered to write a blog post for her and post it here.  So, here is her request and my simple tutorial for a 10.5 inch block.


This block is made up of four half square triangle blocks.  Luanne wants it very scrappy and the colors of fabrics do not matter as long as it is 1930's reproductions!  You can use a mixture of prints and solids.   

You will need eight different scrap pieces.  I am using all prints, simply because that is what I had!

Cut one 6 3/8 inch square from each of the eight fabrics.

Determine which fabrics you want to pair together.  On the wrong side of each of the top squares mark a line from corner to corner.  Then mark two lines 1/4 inch away from each side of the the center line. Or if you own a nifty quarter inch ruler just line it up from corner to corner and draw a line on each side of the ruler.  (You can hardly see my lines in the above picture... my pen was running out of ink.  Don't you hate how FAST the ink goes in the fabric pens?)

Place each pair right sides together and sew on each of the drawn lines that are 1/4 inch off the center. If you've marked the center line, do not sew it!  

Cut each square right down the center line (or between the two lines you've sewn) forming two half square triangles.  

Carefully open them and press them with the seam going in one direction.  

Continue the above steps with your remaining squares of fabric.  You will notice that you have extra half square triangles.  I will show you what you can do with those at the end of this blog post!

Once you have all of your half square triangle blocks sewn and ironed you will need to square those up.  You can use either a 5.5 inch square ruler or a larger square ruler.  Look at this quick video (here)  if you need to see how easy it is to square up your little blocks.  Don't skip this step; it's very important!

The above picture shows the before and after of  squaring up your block.  You can see why it's so important!

Once you have all four of your 5.5 inch blocks squared up, lay them out in the order you desire.  Be sure to lay them out with the diagonal lines all going in the same direction.

Take the top two blocks and sew them right sides together, pressing the seam to one direction.  Repeat this step with the bottom two blocks, pressing your seam in the opposite direction of the top two blocks.  Now you will sew those two strips together.  Make sure to match your center seams by nesting them together.

Press the center seam carefully and you have finished your 10.5 inch block!  

Now... take your remaining half square triangles and follow all the above directions making another 10.5 inch block.  

Follow this little picture tutorial below to make a quick and darling potholder!

Cut a backing fabric about 11 inches square.  Also cut an 11 inch square piece of InsulBrite for the batting.  I only use one layer of InsulBrite.  I've never had a problem with the heat going through it and I love the lightweight potholder.  

I use basting adhesive to adhere my layers together because I've found it is the best way to keep the InsulBrite from bunching up when I machine quilt it (thank you Kim @kimhouselrice for that tip!).  Spray the wrong side of your backing fabric, adhere the InsulBrite, spray the wrong side of the top block and adhere that to the batting.  This will form a perfect little quilt sandwich.

Machine quilt it any way you desire. 

Trim it to a 10.5 inch square and attach the binding the same way you would on a quilt.  I do it all by machine on my potholders.  It's fast and it makes them more durable for all the many washings.  (You can also attach a little hanger before binding.  I don't hang my potholders, so I didn't put a hanger on this one.)

It's not always perfect on the back, but it doesn't bother me on a potholder!

And there you have it!  A quilt block for Luanne and a potholder for you!


  1. Darling all! What fun it must be to quilt with friends in a club. Glad that the patterns are free, too.

  2. Loved the tips on the video and the one that automatically followed. Yup, I’ve been doing it the sloppy way.

  3. Hi Dori, my sister made a small reproduction 1930s depression wall quilt, like the triangle one. Also our Grandma had started a piece with real depression fabric and my sister finished it with reproduction fabric, a Dresden? Pattern for me. How fun to be in a quilting group :). Always good to hear from you, hope everyone is doing fine. I'm sure it's a beautiful time in your neck of the woods. Take care, Kathleen in Az

  4. Thank you sew much Dori. This is sew much fun.