So today I will be sharing a tutorial I put together for mass producing of HSTs I also like it because the outside of the HST units will be on the straight grain. I don't claim to have invented this method by any means, but I've never seen a tutorial for it and I just happened upon this way of making HSTs the other day when I was working on some bear paw blocks.
This method requires two 6 1/4" squares, a pencil, ruler, iron and sewing machine.
1. Trim your two fabrics down to exactly 6 1/4".
2. Take one square (I usually use the lighter fabric). Mark a vertical line 3 1/8" from the left, parallel with the side (this should be the center). I use a regular #2 pencil as the marks with be in the seam allowance. Use your favorite marking tool though; water soluble pen, chalk, whatever. Turn the square 90 degrees and do the same (lines should make a t, intersecting in the exact center of your fabric). Connect the outside points to make a diamond - see the picture, this is easier to do than to explain.
3. Sew 1/4" on both sides of the diamond. When you do inside the diamond be sure to stop when you get the line (the ones that cross in the middle). Put the needle down, presser foot up, rotate your fabric and keep sewing. When you do the outside diamond, sew right off the edge of your fabric, give yourself a little slack on the thread, and keep going. No need to stop and cut your thread. It should now look like the picture below- guess I could have used a more contrasting thread.
4. I usually give it a quick press at this point after taking the pins out, just to flatten out the fullness. Now you need to cut on all the marked lines. I cut the vertical and horizontal lines first, then the diagonals.
5. All that's left is to press open and trim. If you mark, sew, and cut very precisely, you can get 2 3/4" squares. If you like to give yourself some more breathing room, trim down to 2 1/2" squares.
That's it for this tutorial. As you can tell, you will get eight HST units from two squares of fabric, very cool. Please leave a comment for me and let me know what you think. Too wordy, confusing, or need more pictures? Let me know and thanks for stopping by!