The half square triangle is one of the most basic quilting
blocks. You make this square over and over as you make stars and other
This is a great block to use up small pieces of fabric.
You can make these blocks in any size you want. Almost all quilters have
several techniques that they use to make these blocks.
It is easiest to make half square triangles from squares.
If you cut triangles, you may stretch the bias. Since this is a scrappy
quilting site, we will just make 2 blocks at a time.
First determine the size of the square you want. Let's
make our block to finish at 5 inches. To make the block you need two
contrasting pieces of fabric, such as a light and a dark, or a medium and a
dark. Cut the squares the size you want them to finish, plus 7/8 of an
picture to the left shows the back two quilt squares. Put the pieces right sides together, and draw a diagonal line
across one of the squares on the back. It is usually easier to see the
line if you make it on the light fabric. Sew the 1/4 inch seam allowance on each side of the line.
Then cut down the drawn diagonal line and you will have 2 half square triangles.
Press to the darker side of the block.
There are many ways to arrange these blocks. One of the
most popular is the
To the left is just one example of a half square triangle
layout, in addition to the
Pinwheel and the layout at the top of the page. Notice how all the
lights are turned toward the center in the block at the left. You could do
the same thing with the darks also.
Since if it so easy to square these blocks up, a lot of people
oversize the squares they cut for these blocks, and then just trim them after
the are sewn and cut so they will be perfectly square.