Half triangle squares

It’s elementary, dear Watt

Learning to make Half Triangle Squares (HTS).

HTS’s are the basis of numerous quilt designs of all kinds.  You sew two big square together on all four sides, cut them diagonally from corner to corner, fold them open on the one seam each pair has, and voila!

Four smaller squares composed of two right triangles attached along their common hypotenuse.

I purchased four colors — green, yellow, blue, and red.  I’m making a number of kinds of squares, as a result. With this, I have great number of choices, which I have to cut down a little by making one-color HTS’s undesirable, and duplicate colors.

  • yellow-green
  • yellow-blue
  • blue-red
  • red-red

So, out of sixteen combinations possible (hey, there’s something there about geomancy, I should explore that further!), I’m going to be using eight.  By flipping HTS’s over, or putting them in alternate orientations, I can add another six combos in, skipping only the HTS’s that are two triangles of the same color.  IF that particular rule were eliminated, I have a full sixteen combinations to play with.

A woman who owned a quilting shop in Egremont near Great Barrington told me that the half-triangle square was really the workhorse of the quilter. So many patterns come from this standard piecing arrangement.  And I noticed, even while looking for and at her website, that many quilts available in her gallery include squares composed of two triangles of the same color. So maybe I shouldn’t be so picky; maybe I should make a few of those, too. It gives me a much broader range of options, which should be quite magical.


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