Tag Archives: process

Starch | A Life Saver!

I have a confession, I was never much of a starch user. That changed last night; starch is now my best friend, my sanity saver, and my favorite thing in my studio at the moment!

The project I have been working on this week has me tackling Y Seams for the first time. I have tried every way to do Y Seams that is out there and I am still struggling with them. (If you have a good trick for them, please share!) The end result was a finished block, but it looks like this:


Not exactly the block I envisioned! The pattern designer recommended using a copious amount of starch, so I started out with the light spray that I occasionally use, nope, still bubbly. Then saturated the block. It worked! Between the overabundance of starch and a hot steam iron I was left with a flat block! Queue the sigh of relief.


It is no where near square, but that is what trimming is for, right!?

So that is it, my ode (well not really, but you get the idea!) to starch for your Thursday morning.

Starch(Best Press has no idea that I exist, but I highly recommend it. I ordered a refill bottle last night as soon as I discovered that it fixed my blocks.)




Half Square Triangles


I never realized how versatile half square triangles (HST) were until I was given an assignment at our February Philly MQG meeting; both in the endless combinations they can be put together to make a block and the many ways they can be made. For the assignment, we paper pieced them for accuracy. Paper piecing (without the paper – just drawing on the fabric) is my favorite, new way to do HST!

I have done HST in the past, for the round and round quilt, but I was following a pattern and wasn’t exposed to the endless possibilities!

The Philly MQG is working on a charity quilt to benefit the Waldorf School, who generously allows us to use their classroom space gratis for meetings and sewing nights. Each member was given two sets of fabric: a small piece of print fabric and a larger amount of celery green fabric to make a HST block of our choosing. The only rules were that 4 blocks had to have the print fabric and all 16 blocks had to have the celery. The remaining fabric could be anything from our stash – single or multiple fabrics.

I set out to make the blocks and could not decide which designs of block I liked. I put the group of four out into the social media world and ended up with two clear winners – though I think I could have continued playing with the HST for hours!



What is your favorite method of making HST? Do you change it up or consistently work with one method? If you have not tried paper piecing them, Quilt.com has great printable templates.

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