Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Hive 1 Split Star tutorial for August

Hello all my fabulous hive-mates!  Kathy here.
How's your summer going?  Hot enough for you? 

This is my second year participating in Stash Bee and I'm having a blast!.  I'm especially loving learning new blocks, trying new techniques, and stepping outside my colour palette comfort zone.  (OK, so maybe I don't exactly love that last one so much as I appreciate the value of it.)

I also love seeing the posts of finished Stash Bee projects.  I am nearly finished quilting my top from last year and hope to share it here very soon.  My project this year will have to be finished much more quickly as I intend to donate it next Armed Forces Day to my local Marathon Jam where it will be presented to a local veteran.


So without any further ado, my lovely hive-mates, please make and send to me a 12.5" (12" finished) Split Star block in either blue or red.

When choosing your blue fabric, please select one that at a distance reads true blue.  Don't pull any navy, teal, or baby blue for this one.  When choosing your red fabric, please select one that at a distance reads true red.  Don't pull any that lean toward orange, pink, or mauve.  Whether you make a blue Split Star or a red one, I'd rather not have solids.  That being said, if that's what you have in your stash, use it.

As for the white fabric, please choose something that at a distance reads white or pale cream, but not beige or yellow.  And as with the blue and red fabrics, I'd rather not have a solid, but if that's what you have in your stash, use it.

(Ewww...  The colour on that photo isn't great.  Just imagine the white in that red & white stripe or in the white-on-blue stars is nice and bright, and adjust your spectacles accordingly.)

If you imagine the Split Star block blown apart into its nine subunits, you'll see
          one 6.5" half-square triangle unit (center),
          two 3.5" half-square triangle units (lower left & upper right), 
          two 3.5" x 6.5" blue flying geese on white (left & top),
          two 3.5" x 6.5" white flying geese on blue (right & bottom),
          one 3.5" blue square (upper left), and
          one 3.5" white square (lower right).

If that's enough information for you and you have a preferred method for making HST units and flying geese, then have at it!  You can skip my tutorial.  Make me a 12.5" block (12" finished) and send it along.  But if you want to know how I do it, read on.  Be warned though: using my preferred methods will leave you with enough extra pieces that you'll have most of a second block.  OK?  Ready?  Then let's go!

Cut:  (1) 7" square of blue and (1) of white
          (1) 4" square of blue and (1) of white
          (1) 7-1/4" square of blue and (1) of white
          (4) 3-7/8" squares of blue and (4) of white
          (1) 3.5" square of blue and (1) of white

Let's make that big HST unit first....
Place your 7" blue and white squares right sides together.  Mark a diagonal line on the wrong side of the white square.

Sew 1/4" to each side of your drawn line, then cut along the drawn line.
Open up your two HST units and press the seam allowance to the dark side.  Square up the HST units and trim them to 6.5". 

And now the two, smaller HST units....
Repeat the above process with your 4" blue and white squares, except square them up and trim them to 3.5".

* * * * * S I D E B A R * * * * *

Now, I actually like to square & trim my HST units before I open them up, and I like to use the Simple Folded Corners ruler.  In this group we don't require special tools or specific fabrics, but if you have one of these rulers or The "Booty" Ruler (There are probably others.), I highly recommend using it.  I used to say that I would never buy a specialty ruler for something I could do just as well with my trusty 12.5" square or my 6" x 24", but I have since seen the light because DANG!  Some of these specialty rulers save a LOT of time!

If you don't have one of these rulers and you want to try this pre-opening square-and-trim technique, take out your square ruler and painter's tape.  Pick the corner of your ruler with both 1" marks.  Run a strip of tape, diagonally, from one 3.5" mark to the other.

Line up your new tape-line along the sewn line of your unopened HST unit and scoot it just a thread or two into the seam allowance.  (You can see this better in my picture with the Simple Folded Corners ruler at the beginning of the sidebar.)  Now trim away!  When you open up your HST unit and press it to the dark side, you'll have a perfect 3.5" HST unit.  Specialty ruler or no, this method gets you those nice, 90-degree angles any geometry teacher would envy!

* * * * * E N D    O F    S I D E B A R * * * * *

Blue flying geese on white....
Take your four 3-7/8" white squares and mark a diagonal line on the wrong side of each.

Line up one 3-7/8" white square on a corner of one 7-1/4" blue square, right sides together.  The drawn diagonal line should point toward the center of the blue square.

Line up a second 3-7/8" white square on the opposite corner of the 7-1/4" blue square, right sides together.  The white squares will overlap and the two drawn diagonal lines should line up so well that they look like a single line.

Sew 1/4" to each side of your drawn line, then cut along the drawn line.

Press each piece toward the white to get two "hearts."

Line up the last two 3-7/8" white squares on the blue corner of each heart, right sides together.  The drawn diagonal line should point toward the gap.

For each heart, sew 1/4" to each side of your drawn line, then cut along the drawn line.

Press each piece toward the white and TA-DA!  A little flock of flying geese... but you only need two.

White flying geese on blue....
Repeat the same steps as above, but use the four 3-7/8" blue squares and the 7-1/4" white square.

These are the only flying geese you want for the Split Star block.

(This is called the No-Waste Flying Geese method.  If you like it, you can watch a video tutorial and download a free cheat sheet from the Quilting Company by clicking here.)

Lay out your nine subunits.  Be sure to get their placement and orientation correct or you won't get the split star effect.

Sew the three subunits of each row together, and press away from the flying geese units.

Sew the three rows together, nesting the seams for better alignment, and press toward the large, center HST unit. 

And there you have it!  A Split Star block!

Like I said early on, using my preferred methods for this block makes a lot of extra units, almost a whole other block.  

Regardless of what methods you use for your HST and flying geese units, I will be very grateful for each block, and I will be sure to include all of your names on the final quilt so the veteran who receives it will know we all value their years of service.

Thanks, everyone!

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Thanks so much ! I've been looking for something that isn't all half square triangles. The quilt I'm working on now has 768 HST's, so while they are very versatile, I want something just a bit different. Oh yeah, and the tool I use is the Quilt in a Day triangle square up ruler, which works just like yours trimming before opening and pressing.