Have you ever had one of those moments when you’ve seen something and thought, ‘Why have I not tried this method before? Well, if you are like me you’ve either never seen it or never really taken notice of something right under your nose when you have been searching for tips/ideas.

I was looking for an easier way to make half square triangles (HSTs) and spotted several examples on the internet. The most popular method shown is where you draw across the diagonal/centre line, stitch ¼ inch away from the centre line and then cut it in half.

 Stay with me – I will get to the Quarter Square Triangles (QST) soon but some methods of making QSTS require you to know how to make HSTs first!

On we go … here is another method for HSTs

1) put 2 squares of different fabric Right Sides together and sew a ¼ inch seam around the outer edge of the ‘square’

2) slash across the diagonal in one direction

3) slash across the other diagonal

4) open out and PRESS

So easy and so quick. Plus a much neater finish and no messing about with drawing lines across the diagonal.

So …. I wondered if you can do that with the square how can I make QSTs easier using the ‘square’ method? I tried different ways to make these without success and finally found an example to share with you – not my invention by any means. I read it on the internet but cannot find the link now.

Very simply … you need:

4 squares of one colour fabric of your chosen size plus 4 contrasting fabric squares of the same size.

Sewing thread, rotary cutter and mat

[I made several samples using 6 ½ inch, 5 inch and 4 inch squares]

Sew 4 squares together like so ….. using/ ¼ inch seams.

PRESS seams flat.

Repeat with the remaining 4 fabric squares.

Place the two 4 square patches RIGHT SIDES together alternating the colours as shown below. TIP I matched and pinned the seams and centre point before I began sewing.

Sew a ¼ inch seam around the outer edge. Sounds crazy doesn’t it? But, hang on in there, it will all work out!

Now take your ruler and position it diagonally (corner to corner) and cut along the centre line with your rotary cutter. Next … position your ruler diagonally from the opposite corners and cut again, (a rotating cutting mat ideal for this but it can just as easily be done without one).

Open them out to give you 4 QSTs. PRESS.

The chart below shows the finished QST size – don’t worry if your QSTs don’t come out exact to these sizes as you can trim to a size of your choosing.

Square Size                                    QST finished size (approx.)                     Trim to

6 ½ inch square                               8 ½ inch                                                   8 ¼ inch

5 inch square                                   6 ½ inch                                                   6 ¼ inch

4 inch square                                    5 inch                                                       4 ¾ inch

You can also mix it up by using 2 squares of 4 different colours ….

I found this a much easier method to make QSTs and I hope you do too. The added bonus was that it gave me perfect points every time – who can ask for more!

Now I have to decide what I’m going to do with all the samples I made!!!!

Happy sewing everyone.

Carol Lightburn

Twitter @quiltsewgo