Bonus Half Square Triangles – a new project!

Introducing my latest scrap project:  a log cabin style quilt made entirely with bonus half square triangles.  Do you make these?  Maybe there are other names for them, but to me they’ve always been “bonus half square triangles” or “bonus HSTs”.  For years they’ve been collecting in a box.  I can’t tell you how happy this new project has made me!

Every time I make a flying geese or snowball quilt block, I sew two seam lines instead of one.  The first, I sew on the line for the pattern/block I’m making.  The second, I sew 1/2″ away from that line, into the fabric I’ll be cutting off.  Then I press it while closed, and trim off the excess.  Except when I trim, I’m trimming off a smaller half square triangle block instead of two scrap triangles.  This way they’re made as I sew, and then they go in the box – usually subdivided by project to keep like fabrics together.

For this project, I first started by putting a bunch of them together in a 16″ block, and then I gathered all the bonus half square triangles from one of my oldest projects and began.  I sewed like blocks together in a row, and then started wrapping them around my original block, log cabin style.  It’s really fun to see these original Cotton + Steel fabrics again.  While I would never have paired the fabrics in the center block with them, the surprising color patterns that emerged are delightful.

This project is improv.  That means no trimming blocks to square up, no measuring, no worrying.  Just sew them together and smile at what happens.  I’m embracing the cutoff pieces in the corners as part of the fun!

So far I’m sewing one full round each day, and I like that goal.  I’m sure it will become just one strip per day as the quilt gets larger.  I don’t know how big I will make it, or what scraps I’ll move to next when all the bonus HSTs from this one run out.  It’s the most relaxing, fun sewing I’ve done in a while!  And it’s great to have all those bonus half square triangles out of a box and into a project.  I wonder how many I can use?

I’ll be back soon with a progress report on this one.

Happy Sewing, Jennifer


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