I love quilting tools & gadgets --- some play with me every day, some just come out when the right job calls for them.
My explanation to the DH about WHY I have so many different tools is this --- Why do screwdrivers come in so many different sizes? Or golf clubs? So you’ll have the right tool for the job when that job comes along.
Last night ---it was THIS BLOCK that required a bit of revamp on the triangle method I was using to get the results that I wanted.
One of Randy’s blocks for this installment of the 6” Sow-Along blocks is a traditional Cut Glass Dish --- only in 6” size it means that each of those triangle units finishes at 1”!
Oh, don’t look too closely at my points, they don’t all match, and I picked out and re-sewed all I was going to ----it’s staying! I had tried my regular Easy Angle ruler, but the pairs of triangles were so small that they didn’t sew very well even with a stilletto for me.
How small is too small? I think this confirms it! So my choices were to either “Draw a grid of 1 7/8” squares – draw diagonal lines through the grid, and cut apart after sewing 1/4” on each side of the diagonal lines” Which WORKS GREAT – but my fabric was already in 1.5” strips ---Soooooo ----
I pulled out my nifty Quilt in a Day triangle square up ruler --- I used this when doing the gazillion 1” finished half square triangles for my oak leaf and reel quilt that I unstitched and rearranged at the Gwen Marston retreat I went to in the Fall of 2009. You can read more about that HERE. Oh and HERE TOO. Such fun! Such a gazillion triangles…OY!
What I did for both the “Cut Glass Dish” block above, AND the triangles for the Oak Leaf & Reel quilt was to sew 1.5” strips into tube sets….stitching on both sides of the strip pairs, and then placing the 1.5” line ((Which is the UNFINISHED size of the unit I am making)) on the stitching line of the tube set, using this ruler to cut my half-square triangle units.
After cutting, very carefully open them up and press. And as always, clip dog ears! :c)
This DOES mean that the triangle units have bias on the outside edges of the unit, but there is not much stretch to a 1” finished square. A bit of spray starch before cutting can minimize any stretching, and I get very accurate very small units this way.
I don't recommend steam when pressing things with bias edges ---it can encourage wonkiness to happen!
You just have to know that with a bias edge on anything, you are going to have to press carefully, handle cautiously, and even that bit of stretch and ease can work in your favor if you know how to handle it right! The only thing I would have done differently on these was to maybe press the seams OPEN. There is a lot of bulk in this 6” finished block because I didn’t.
But it’s DONE!