Monday, June 16, 2014

Sweet Sixteen Tutorial

"The Sweet 16" baby quilt is a quick and easy project made from sixteen quilt blocks. Each block begins with a 10"x10" square so this quilt sews together quickly. Sweet! Once the half-square triangle blocks are sewn together they can be arranged to form a variety of familiar patterns. The quilt finishes out at 37"x37" making it the perfect size for a donation quilt. So let's get started!

For this project you will need:

8 - white/neutral 10"x10" squares 
8 - print 10"x10" squares
Backing - 1 1/4 yd cotton fabric cut 42"x45"
Binding - 1/3 yd cotton fabric cut (4) 2 1/2" strips. (Please note there will only 
                be a few inches to spare, so plan accordingly.)
Batting - cotton quilt batting cut 41"x41"

Finished size of quilt: 37"x37" square

Step 1: Draw a diagonal line across each of the 8 white squares with a marking pen/pencil. Match each white square with a print square, being careful to match the crosswise stretch of one
block with the lengthwise stretch of the second block. Pin right sides together. 

 Step 2: Stitch a scant 1/4" seam on both sides of the marked line. You may want to double check your machine to be certain the 1/4" seam allowance is accurate.

Step 3: To ensure stability, press seam with spray starch before cutting.

Step 4: Place ruler on marked line, between the two rows of stitching, and cut apart.

Step 5: On each block, press toward the darker fabric.

Step 6: Trim bunny ears from the corners.

Step 7: This is where it gets fun! Lay the blocks in a pattern that pleases you. Here are a few ideas to get you started...

The Windmill

The Chevron

The Half-Square Triangle

Step 8: The following instructions are the same regardless of the layout you choose. 
            Each quilt is made from four vertical “columns” and four horizontal “rows”.

Step 9: Fold column 2 back on top of column 1, placing right sides together. Pin blocks. Stitch 1/4" seam. If you chain piece each block and do not cut the connecting threads, it may help keep your blocks in order as the rows are sewn together.

Step 10: Lay column 3 on top of column 2, placing right sides together. Pin blocks and stitch seam.

Step 11: Lay column 4 on top of column 3, placing right sides together. Pin blocks and stitch seams.

Step 12: At this point all the rows are horizontally sewn together and connected by the chain stitching threads. This helps hold blocks in correct order, however some may find they can more accurately stitch if the threads are snipped.

Step 13: Drape quilt over ironing board and alternately press rows to right or left. This will allow the seams to nestle together and form a crisp seam. Pin rows together and stitch each seams with a 1/4" seam allowance.

Step 14: Press final three seams open to reduce bulk.

Step 15: Square up quilt top. Using your favorite method, to baste quilt top to batting and backing. 

Step 16: Use your favorite method to quilt the top. The examples above were quilted by using painter's tape as a guideline.

Step 17: Trim away excess backing and batting. Use your favorite method to attach binding. Enjoy!

If you end up making a quilt with this tutorial I'd love to hear from you:)

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May you always Sew in Peace!


  1. Those look so pretty. I love the simple elegance of the HSTs.

  2. They are adorable! Great job!

  3. I love baby quilts... And these are all sew cute! Amazing how different each can turn out when all designed using hst's. Great work!

  4. They all look great and thanks for the measurements (the 10x10 sqaure is great) that help to make it easy. Will get to this eventually and get back to you once I've made one.

  5. Found this through the Sew Many Ways linky party! Love how many different ways you can put them together. This is a great reference post for designing with half square triangles!


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