Welcome to Block 3 of the Spectrum QAL 2020.
Today’s block offers a vibrant blend of colors using fabrics from the Wave Texture collection by Benartex. Among the techniques I’ll demonstrate today is another simple method to create half-square triangles (HSTs).
Last week we had a chance to see Claire Haillot’s Block 3 and in two days, Elaine Theriault will be highlighting hers!
It’s time to take a closer look at my version of Block 3, let’s go!
As with the previous two blocks, the finished Block 3 will also measure 12” x 12” (12½” x 12½” unfinished) with each individual square measuring 2” x 2” (finished).
To make an HST with a finished measurement of 2” x 2”, add ⅞” to each side of the HST. In other words, a fabric piece cut 2⅞” x 2⅞ square will give you a 2”x 2” square HST when finished.
TIP When cutting pieces for HSTs, I cut the squares 3” x 3”. This gives me a little extra wiggle room should my seams be slightly off.
When I wrote the instructions for my version of Block 2 I demonstrated how to make HSTs using square pieces of fabric. This week, I’ll demonstrate how to make HSTs using rectangles, which is just as easy as making HSTs from squares.
As per the Block 3 layout diagram above, cut seven different colored fabrics as follows:
Fabric A Cut four 2½” x 2½” squares from 2966-20 Cayenne
Fabric B Cut two 3” X 12” rectangles from 2966-20 Cayenne
Fabric C Cut one 3” X 12” rectangle from 2966-32 Amber
Fabric D Cut one 3” X 12” rectangle from 2966-53 Cobalt
Fabric E Cut one 3” X 12” rectangle from 2966-39 Tangerine
Fabric F Cut one 3” X 12” rectangle from 2966-15 Medium Red
Fabric G Cut one 3” x 6” rectangle from 2966-39 Tangerine
Fabric H Cut one 3” X 6” rectangle from 2966-19 Dark Red
Fabric J Cut two 3” x 3” squares from 2966-55 Sky
Fabric K Cut one 3” x 3” square from 2966-15 Medium Red
Fabric L Cut one 3” x 3” square from 2966-19 Dark Red
Now for the fun part, playing matchmaker with the fabrics!
Pair the fabric pieces into sets with right sides together as follows:
B with C
B with D
E with F
G with H
L with J
K with J
From each of the paired fabric sets, choose one of the two 3” x 12” and 3” x 6” fabrics. On the wrong side of one of the fabrics in each of the selected pairs, draw vertical lines across the width of the fabric piece spaced 3” apart. Use the photo below for guidance.
When all the vertical lines are drawn, draw diagonal lines starting at a corner of the fabric and going across the width of the fabric to the start of the closest vertical line. If there’s more than one vertical line drawn on the fabric, pivot the ruler at the vertical line and draw another diagonal line to the start of the vertical line on the opposite long edge of the fabric. Repeat until there’s a diagonal line in every 3” section.
Next: on the wrong sides of one of the two 3”x 3” fabric pairs (LJ and KJ), draw a diagonal line going from corner to corner.
Before going on to the next step, pin all fabric pairs together to ensure they don’t shift while sewing.
Note: All seam allowances for this block are ¼”.
Sew a seam on each side of the diagonal lines. When all the seams are sewn, cut along each vertical and diagonal line as shown below.
Press open each set of HST pairs and trim each HST pair to measure 2½” x 2½” square.
TIP When all pressing and trimming is complete, to keep organized, label the color sets and ensure each set of HST pairs are kept separate from each other.
This next step is like putting together a small 36 piece puzzle.
With the help of the layout diagram shown earlier in this post, place every piece of the block in its proper spot beside your sewing machine or on a cutting mat.
TIP I lay the pieces out on a small cutting board so I can easily carry the laid out block to my sewing machine.
If I don’t lay the sewn pairs out first, I tend to make sewing errors when assembling the paired HSTs into rows. It only takes a moment to lay the pieces out and for such a small step; it saves plenty on the time, frustration and effort of “unsewing”.
Following the layout diagram, sew each HST pair to one another.
Sew the HST pairs together into horizontal rows.
After sewing each row, press the vertical seams of each row to one side but in opposite directions in each row to reduce bulk as shown below.
Match the vertical seams and sew each row to each other, then press to complete Block 3.
Block 3 of the Spectrum QAL 2020 is now complete. The more I look at the colors of the Wave Texture fabrics the more I love the way these colors play with each other. I’m really looking forward to working on the remaining blocks!
Over the last few weeks, Claire Haillot and Elaine Theriault have been working to assemble their Spectrum quilts. This isn’t your typical QAL, indeed! It’s exciting to see the same block designs constructed by three quilters using different fabric collections to create unique quilts! See the progress for all quilt blocks pertaining to the Spectrum QAL 2020.
Come back next week when Claire will be sharing her Block 4 in the Spectrum QAL 2020. I’ll be back in two weeks with my version of Block 4!