Monday, February 6, 2023

2023 Valentine Mini Mystery Quilt - Step 3

 Here's Step 3 of the 2023 Valentine mini quilt - 

Materials and Cutting


From a light print for the quilt background, cut

1 square, 4 ½”  x  4 ½”

                      1 square, 7”  x  7” cut twice on the diagonal for 4 triangles.

                      2 squares, 3 ¾”  x  3 ¾”.  Cut each square once on the diagonal for 4 triangles.

 From a pink or red print, cut                                                 

                        4 rectangles/strips, 2” x 11 ½ for borders                                       

                        4 squares, 2” x 2”  for corner blocks.


1.   Sew the blocks together in diagonal rows as shown with the 4 ½” setting block in the center row and the setting triangles on the ends of the first and third rows.   


2.    Add the 4 corner triangles.

 3.  Sew two border strips to the sides of the quilt. Sew two 2 ½” squares to both ends of the remaining border strips. Sew these to the top and bottom of your quilt.


                                  Ta da!  Love Letters . . . 

I thought it might be fun to applique some little hearts inside the blocks. Layer with batting and backing, quilt and add a 1 1/4" binding. 

Friday, February 3, 2023

2023 Valentine Mini Quilt - Step 2

 Step 2 - Take four matching half-square triangles from Step 1 and sew them together as shown. Do this with each set of matching HSTs. Make 4 blocks. Trim to 4 1/2"  x  4 1/2". 

Make 4 blocks. 

Step 3 will be posted on Monday, February 6. 




Wednesday, February 1, 2023

2023 Valentine Mini Quilt - Step 1

Here's the first step for making my little Valentine quilt - 


From four different red or pink fabrics, cut

            2 squares, 2 7/8"  x  2 7/8" 

From four different light or shirting prints, cut

            2 squares, 2 7/8"  x  2 7/8" 

This gives you 8 light squares and 8 pink and red squares in matching sets of 2. 

Next - Match up each red or pink print square with a light print square in matching sets of two. Make 4 sets of half-square triangles. Here's how to make half-square triangles - 

Layer a light print square together with a pink or red print square, right sides together. Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner across the lighter square. Stitch 1/4" away from the line on both sides. Cut on the drawn line. Flip open and press. Arrange in four groups of matching prints. Make 16 half-square triangles. Trim each to 2 1/2"  x  2 1/2". 

If you have trouble with half-square triangles, one of my favorite tools for making them is the Quilter's Rule Quick Quarter ruler. 

You may be able to find this tool at your local quilt shop or a quilt shop online. If not, JoAnn Fabrics and Amazon carry it. Here's how to use it: Cut 2 squares (usually light and dark) according to the directions in your pattern. Layer the right sides together. Line up the open notches of this ruler on the diagonal corners of your fabric squares as shown.


Mark a line along each side of the ruler with a fine lead pencil. These are the sewing lines. Lightly mark the center through the notches as well. This is the cutting line.

You can see that I stitched on the drawn sewing lines. Slow down and stitch your lines carefully. I always stitch a tiny bit to the INSIDE of the line to make up for the extra fabric used when pressing the squares open.

After you sew on both lines, press the squares to set the stitches. Flip open one side and press gently BEFORE you cut the squares in half. Switch and press the other side open. THEN cut in half. This will stabilize the bias edge and keep your blocks from stretching out of shape, which gives them a wonky look. If you cut and stitch accurately (slow down!) and press this way, your half-square-triangle units will come out perfectly instead of WONKY and will need minimal trimming. Try it! 

Perfect squares, minimal trimming. Just snip off those ends.

That's it! I encourage you to join my Facebook group for motivation if you haven't already. I find that if you break down these little projects into simple steps and sew along with others it's not only more fun but you'll be much more likely to finish something. 

Stop by on Friday, Feb 3, when I'll post Step 2.