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Sunday, November 19, 2017

Quilting Essentials ~ Half Square Triangles

If you're like me, you make hundreds, if not thousands, of Half Square Triangles in a year.  They are an essential block in many of my quilts.  I love them and don't mind making them at all since I began making them larger and trimming them down many, many years ago.
The truth is they are a staple of my designs, and I have future projects planned using tons of them, so I keep an ongoing flow of scrappy Half Square Triangles through my machine.  While working with the fabrics of other projects, I always cut 2 1/2 inch squares of whatever light and dark prints I'm working with and add them to the ongoing pile.
I sew them Leader and Ender style (thanks, Bonnie!) and can accumulate a big pile fairly quickly.
If I'm organized (and truth be told, I have not been lately!), the HST's go into this bin sorted by color.  From here, they can be trimmed to whatever size I need.  
I love, love, love blocks I can trim to perfection, and this is my tool of choice to do just that.
If you're not familiar with the Bloc Loc rulers, they are wonderful because they have a channel carved out of the ruler which accommodates the bulk of the seam allowance.  It "locks" onto the seam which makes it stable, and the ruler doesn't rock back and forth on the seam when you're trimming it!  Wonderful!
The other thing I love is how easy it is to read,  and it trims any Half Square Triangle in 1/8th inch measures to any size smaller, making it a great value.

I strive to be a precision quilter and this tool gives me great results.  I don't like a whole lot of notions and rulers, but if it really performs, is versatile and not too expensive, I'm all for it.

That said.....if you get great results you're happy with using papers or piecing the traditional way, don't change a thing!!  

I'm not affiliated in any way to Bloc Loc, and the hints I share in my Quilting Essentials posts are just my opinion.  

If you'd like to give Bloc Loc rulers a try, please ask for them at your favorite local quilt shop!  It's so very important to support your local shop.  If you can't find them there, you can find them on my website.  

Click here to read more about the Bloc Loc rulers.

And....I am curious to which method is your favorite for making Half Square Triangles?  

I have a poll on the sidebar of my blog where you can cast your vote.  If you receive my blog posts via email, click here to go to the poll and vote for your favorite method.  (Poll ends 11/26/17)  It will be so fun to see what the most popular method is for all of us (world wide!)

Hope in some way the information I have shared will help you.  Your comments are welcome and if you have something you'd like me to write about in future Quilting Essentials blog posts, I'd like to know that as well.  

I'm off to spend the rest of the day sewing!  Yay!  Hope you get some time to sew as well.  Be well...


  1. Honestly, this is a super lame answer, but my favourite method of making HSTs is however the pattern designer tells us to do it. I've been meaning to figure outlay favourite method, but sometimes that just takes too much brain power and organization!! I bought the ez angle and I keep saying that I'm going to learn how to use it, but its still unused after 5 years. Shameful, I know!! Enjoy your sewing...I'm between hockey games!

  2. I also adore the BlocLoc and use it every time I'm in my sewing room!

  3. I'm a Blocloc user also. And I always oversize so I can trim to the perfect size. Love your system of leaders and enders. I'm a big fan of that too. Thanks for all your great tips.

  4. Most of the time, I oversize them and trim with the EZ Angle ruler. I also like using Triangles on a Roll.

  5. I'm an old-school quilter; I square them up with a regular Omni grid ruler! I'm usually wary of quilting gadgets, but I'd give these a try as I like what you've said. Thanks!

  6. I like oversize my squares and use the Blocloc ruler to trim. I love this ruler!
    Pam, I like your organizing system. Great idea! Thanks

  7. You converted me to the Bloc-Loc when you taught in Kerrville Texas this fall. I had always used the Quilt in a Day ruler, but the Bloc-Loc gives me better points. Thanks for the info.

  8. I absolutely love my Bloc-Loc rulers and have converted a lot of others into using them too--awesome tool!

  9. I've always made over-sized hst's and trim with Creative Grid square ruler which are just about the only rulers I have. I like BlocLoc for tiny flying geese and might try the squares now! Also like trimming the hst before it is opened and ironed....but....there is a second step in that there are dogears that must be trimmed! However, I just ordered a new set of triangles that does that for 2', 3" and 4" AND trim the dogears in one operation.....from TQM products. Will let you know if they are practical!

  10. I oversized them,I use a ruler and I always add a quarter when the pattern say to make hst, and them trimmed though I don´t like trimmed.
    This gadget looks great .I`ll add it to my list.

  11. You left out English Paper Piecing! :-) I EPP everything since I cannot sit at a sewing machine.

  12. For half triangle squares, I have a ruler (can't recall the name of it) that I cut two strips and sew them together then use the point of the ruler for cutting guide. I'm loving the block lock idea. Off to click and take a closer look - thank you!

  13. I like to oversize my squares and use the Blocloc ruler to trim. I love this ruler!

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