I recently saw Missouri Star’s Rhombus Star video. It looked like fun to me, and I already had the template, but I had been waiting for them to come out with the smaller Rhombus template. When I saw the video, I noticed the smaller template was now available, so I got it.
I was working on a quilt for myself at time, so when it arrived, I put the template away for later.
Later came sooner, when some friends of mine who have family in Texas said they were going to make quilts to send. Their family is part of the rescue team, and they would be handing out the quilts directly. Of course, I shelved little Sunbonnet Sue, got out that template, and brought in my tote of patriotic fabric. I opened it, and said “Talk to me”
Our sewing play date was the next day, so I gathered up the pieces that spoke up, and took them with me.
Having no pattern for the small ruler, I would just have to make one block, and measure it to see what size it would be, before I could figure out how many to make for a quilt. This concept totally freaked out my friend at the “PlayDate with a Featherweight” sewing group.
“What are you making?”
“A quilt to send to Texas”
“I am making stars”
“What’s the pattern?”
“I have to make a block and see what size they are first”
“But what’s the pattern?”
“I guess it’s Stars”
“You don’t know what it’s going to be?”
“Yeah, it’s gonna be stars”
“So you have no pattern?”
“I am pretty sure these are gonna be Stars. I just need to cut a few more, and then I can start sewing, and see what they will measure out to”
“You are crazy!”
“Ok then, which of these reds should I include? I don’t know about this bandana fabric.”
“Oh the bandana has to be included. It’s SOOO Texas!”
“Alrighty then. Texas gets red bandanas!”
In the video, Jenny makes hers into half blocks, sewn one pointing up and one pointing down in rows. I want to sew mine in squares, so I am making mine square-ish.
Each block contains
3 blue Rhombus shapes from large scraps or FQ’s.
3 red Rhombus shapes from large scraps or FQ’s.
12 triangle background pieces from yardage.
4 setting triangle background pieces from yardage.
To start, I laid the template down on the fabric, against a longer ruler, and cut strips. Note that this template is an odd size – 3 5/8 wide. Later I added a strip of orange glo-tape at that point on my ruler. If you don’t have glo-tape, just use the template every time. For accuracy, I slide the template all the way to the end, and make sure it is dead on at both ends before cutting.
The rhombus shaped pieces were cut first.
If using a FQ you can get 4 on the short [19″] side, and 5 on the long side [22″] making 20 total. 20 doesn’t divide by 3 if you want to use an alternate color pattern like mine, but 18 does. So one FQ will make 6 half blocks. 2 FQ’s in 2 different colors will make 6 blocks of alternating colors.
A scrap strip that is almost 15″ long will make 3 of these.
The triangle background pieces, when measured from the flat tip of the point to the line that says “line up edge of fabric strip here to cut triangle” turned out to be the same width [3 5/8] of fabric. So, you can use it to cut the strips like I did for the rhombus pieces.
Spin template for each cut. Don’t forget to cut the tiny corners at the bottom. Remember these are 60 degrees, so you will have to cut on both sides. One side will only be a sliver, though.
One strip will make 17 pieces. I cut mine with strip folded in half, so the 8 you see is really 16 pieces.
The setting triangle background pieces were cut from 3 7/8 wide strips, subcut 7 1/4 long, and then cut in half diagonally. One 3 7/8 wide strip cut the length of fabric makes 6 rectangles that will cut into 12 setting triangles, and therefore complete 3 blocks.
*You can round up to 4″ on the width since you will be squaring the blocks before assembly.
** This is piece will not be 60 degrees, even though I am attaching them to a 60 degree angled piece, for 2 reasons. 1 It’s easier to just make a diagonal cut from a rectangle, and 2 because I will be squaring up the block anyway.
I could have used my Super SideKick Ruler [which is 60 degrees] to make more exact setting pieces, but I was throwing this together as quickly as I could, and I didn’t feel like cutting these one at a time. For anyone wishing to make this, if you have the Super Sidekick ruler, use it to make your setting pieces, and your blocks will be more square.
These half blocks, made with the small ruler, measure 14.75″ on the long side by 6.5″
When completed as one whole block, they trim down to 12.25″ by 13.5″
Now that I know what size these are, I will do a 4 block by 4 block quilt.
I am doing 16 square blocks, but leaving 2 of them as half blocks [for offset] so I will need:
48 blue diamonds [3 FQ’s]
48 red diamonds [3 FQ’s]
192 triangle background pieces from 11 1/2 strips cut 3 5/8″ wide. Yardage = 45″
64 setting triangle background pieces from 5 1/2 strips cut 3 7/8″ wide. Yardage = 24″
Basically, you’ll need about 2 yards of background fabric.
* I started with a 3 yard piece of background fabric, and after adding a 4″ outer border, I ended up with 1/2 yard left over.
The inner border is from scrappy yardage. The piece I used only had one selvage edge, and was about 38″ in some places, so I can’t give you exact yardage for that.
Tools I used:
6″x24″ or other long ruler
15″ square ruler
Glo-tape to mark ruler for strips
G-Easy Ruler Stickers to use when squaring up blocks
stilletto [to poke the pieces under the needle when chain piecing, so they don’t shift]
seam roller [to press seams at your sewing machine when chain piecing]
Optional: Super Sidekick or other 60 degree ruler
Chain piecing time!
Because of the shape, I have found it goes together better if the 1st seam, which is a triangle on the botton right of the rhombus piece, is pressed to the rhombus piece. I use my clover seam roller for this.
Trim the tiny ears, then sew the second triangle pieces on.
Press the second triangle back to itself.
As you begin sewing these together, the seams will nest nicely.
Arrange in groups.
When sewing the setting pieces, be sure to over hang the triangle. I pin these to make sure they stay put. I don’t pin much, but I pin here, and anywhere I need seams to match.
After all the halves have the side setting pieces, I sew all but 2 of the half blocks together, and then begin squaring them up.
I marked the ruler to be sure the top and bottom star points all ended up in the same spot, because the points almost touch when assembled.
yeah, my setting blocks leave a lot of trmming. Use your Super sidekick if you have one.
Turned out pretty though, didn’t it?
Lay out time! I have a design bed.
Finished! With a 2.5″ [cut size] inner border, and a 4″ [cut size] outer border, this quilt measures 58×63.
I was a bit short on the binding, so I added some red pieces at 2″ intervals, and placed them in one corner to look like I did that on purpose.
Once again, I stitched in the ditch, and then did a diamond shaped figure 8 following the stars.
The lables I ordered came in, and this is the first quilt that gets one!
One final note: If you have an old house and an awesome vintage percolator that along with your iron excedes the amperage on that one circut, and you’re waiting for what seams like an extraordinarily long time for it to finish so you can turn the iron back on,
. . . please check to be sure Hubby put the lid on before plugging it in. Then send the picture to Hubby’s phone in the shop. Sew much nicer than the words I was thinking.
I will make a couple more for Texas, and then get back to Sue. Sunbonnet Sue has waited 20 years to find her home in a quilt, and she can wait a few more weeks.
This quilt was a record for me, making it in just 7 days. That means I missed the One monthly goal sign up date of Sept 7th. but some things are more important. At least a dozen folks in Texas will feel our love.
My friend Sues quilt shown above with mine, was made using Bonnie Hunter’s Forth Of July pattern. and no, she was not the one pestering me about my lack of a printed pattern.
For those who watched Jenny’s video, and are having trouble making their quilt square, it is because Jenny forgot to mention that you have to add a ‘setting piece” to the ends of your rows. I used the small Rhombus, so I can’t give you the mesurements for the large one, but maybe these pictures will help you.
This is what Jenny did.
Option 2 is what I did. [I did it to each piece, but you only need it on the ends of your rows] Lay your piece on a grid and measure the “void” [shown in purple] then add 1/4 seam allowance. Then you can sew this piece on to your ends, and trim.
#HelpTexas #TexasGetsRedBandanas #RhombusStar #CheckCoffee