Sadly, I have no Friday Finish this week. I did a fair amount of sewing but did not make it to the finish line with anything. That will definitely be corrected next week!!
I did a fair amount of quilting this week and my mind wanders when I machine quilt. I’m sure that is a contributing factor as to why I am not a good quilter. Haha! Sometimes, though, I have a thought that leads me down another rabbit hole. I thought about making variable stars from charm packs.
Remember this little table mat from last week? This is what started it. I happened to think that the pattern is probably available for free on Moda’s website. Sure enough, it is so download the pattern if you would like to make it. There are variations to make a wall hanging or table runner. The link is here.
Of course, this pattern works with any charm pack or five-inch squares you have available. Using cupcake papers to make them is one method to make scrappy variable stars from charm packs, but read on for step-by-step directions to make the same block without the papers. I will show you two different methods; one using specialty rulers and one without.
Cutting the Charm Squares with a Triangle Ruler
For this method, you will need a 90-degree triangle ruler such as the Easy Angle, Omnigrid Right Triangle, Fons & Porter Flying Geese Ruler, or Essential Triangle Tool. If you are not familiar with these rulers, be sure to read the instructions that came with your ruler. They all work basically the same, but there are little differences between each ruler.
First, cut two 2″ strips from each charm. I cut a sliver off one side to get rid of the pinked edge.
Next, cut one 2″ square from each strip. Again, I cut off the pinked edge before cutting the square.
Use a 90-degree triangle ruler such as the Easy Angle, Omnigrid Right Triangle, Fons & Porter Flying Geese Ruler, or Essential Triangle Tool to cut two half-square triangles from the remainder of each strip.
Each charm square yields two 2″ squares and four half-square triangles so you need two charms for each variable star block.
Cutting the Charm Square with Standard Rulers
Start by cutting a sliver off the edge to get rid of the pinked edge. Then cut one 2″ strip and one 2⅜” strip from each charm square.
From the 2″ strip, cut two 2″ squares.
From the 2⅜” strip, cut two 2⅜” squares.
Then cut each 2-3/8″ square once on the diagonal to yield four half-square triangles.
Cutting the background fabric
From the background fabric, you need four 2″ squares for the corners and four quarter-square triangles for the flying geese to make one variable star block.
You can cut the triangles from a 2″ strip if you have a specialty ruler such as Essential Triangle Tool, Fons & Porter Flying Geese ruler, Companion Angle, or Omnigrid 98.
If you don’t have a specialty ruler, cut one 4¼” square.
Then cut the square on the diagonal twice.
Sewing the block
Using two print triangles and a background triangle, make flying geese unit. You need four flying geese for each block.
Using four print squares, make a four-patch for the center.
Lay out the units as shown and sew them into rows.
Then, just sew the rows together.
After all this, would I cut five-inch squares just to make these blocks? Probably not. There are more efficient ways to piece these scrappy blocks, but I sure love them as a creative use for charm squares.
I have a plan for all my little variable star blocks. Can’t wait to show you!!
Stephanie Sinden says
I love how you’ve made the block with no waste! Stitch and flip corners are fast, but I hate the waste. I have a few of those specialty rulers and need to use them more!