## May 28, 2014

### The Magic 8 revisited...trimming trick and cutting chart!

Almost 3-1/2 years ago i shared the Magic 8 method on my blog.   That particular post has been pinned thousands of times, shared and re~blogged over and over.

Well...the other day, i was thinking about this method and may have an idea to improve just a bit on the very popular Magic 8 method.  Nothing earth shattering, but just something to consider...Plus i've created a cutting chart and sharing a slick way to trim all those half square triangles!

So let's begin at the beginning.
How to make 8 half square triangles using only 2 fabric squares.

To make a Magic 8, first determine what size finished half square triangles are desired.

For example:
To make 2" finished half square triangles,
Multiply 2-7/8" by 2.  That equals 5-3/4".
(2) 5-3/4" fabric squares are the size needed to create (8) 2"
finished half square triangles.

** improvement:  cut the 2 fabric squares 1/4" larger.   For the above example...Cut (2) 6" squares instead of 5-3/4". This will allow you to trim your half square triangles for more accuracy.  For those very accurate quilters, this step may not be necessary.

Here's how to make a Magic 8

Take your desired fabric squares and place them right sides together.
Draw 2 diagonal lines corner to corner
Stitch a 1/4" on either side of both drawn lines

Cut the stitched fabric squares apart, resulting in 8 half square triangles.  There will be 4 cuts.  With each cut, be careful not to shift the fabric squares.

The first is a vertical cut, right down the middle.
The second cut will be horizontal...again, right in the middle.
The third cut is corner to corner
and the fourth cut is the opposite corner to corner
Voila!

If the fabric squares shift a bit, the extra 1/4" will allow one to trim for accuracy.

Now for a great trimming trick...
Say you need to trim your half square triangles to 2".  Draw a diagonal line using a dry erase pen on an acrylic ruler.  In this example i've drawn my diagonal line 2" down from the corner of the ruler.  If you want to trim  half square triangles to 1-1/2", the 'dry erase' diagonal line would be
1-1/2" down from the corner of the ruler.

Line up the 'dry erase' diagonal line with the seam, and trim.  EZPZ!  This trimming trick is shared from Corey Yoder of Little Miss Shabby

Here's a chart to help determine what size fabric squares to cut for the desired Half Square Triangles.  The unfinished size is also the trimming size which includes seam allowance.

***For a FREE printable download of these instructions, head over to my Craftsy Pattern Store HERE.  Look for the Free Magic 8 Tutorial. Consider following my Crafty Pattern Store too as i will be offering more free tutorials soon!

Now...go make something yummy with all those half square triangles!!

1. what a great tutorial, many thanks will be using this for sure

2. Спасибо! Быстро и аккуратно.

3. Thanks for sharing, that will speed things up!

4. I just saw this. Thank you so much for sharing…I'm in the middle of a new project that includes HSTs and this will save me so much time!!

5. What a time saver! I don't care how long a person has been quilting, there is always still something new to be learned from others. Thank you so much for sharing!

6. How amazing, thank you very much - especially for the extra 1/4". I would love to put this on my Pinterest page so much clearer than Bookmarks, although I have done that immediately. Can you tell me how to put it on Pinterest or is it just not possible when the big P is not on a picture?

1. when i right click on the image a 'pin it' option appears. Here's a link to my pinterest and you can grab it there too. http://www.pinterest.com/chezstitches/

2. This is a really neat thing to know. Seems like all the good quilts take millions of HST. So thanks for the information.

3. Add the "pin it" to your toolbar. Depending on what type of computer you are using there are a lot of tutorials on the web. I have it on mac, pc, and ipad - couldn't live without it lol!

7. All this info is awesome, for newbie quilters and accomplished quilters alike. I will share onto my guild Facebook. Only problem is the font used. Wow! Hard to read. I enlarged the page too.

8. ??The font changed when I hit "Publish".... Magic?

9. very good idea.. thanks for sharing your idea.

10. You did the math fo r us! Yeah!!! Thank you so much! This will be tried today!

11. Thank you so very much for this VERY clear explanation and you're right I'm pinning so I won't forget!

12. Awesome! I'm doing a blog entry about this and will send people over to be "enlightened"! Thanks so much for your sweet sharing spirit! You are one smart cookie! XO

13. I have been doing the same for years. Quick math tip: ((Finished size + 1") x 2) for the squares. Works every time. Also, this method provides 2 lovely sets of 4 corner HST's with all the fabric going in the proper orientation (think with stripes). My favorite way of HST!

14. Thank you for this tutorial. I always like a little wiggle room so I can trim.

15. You amaze!!!! Loving this technique (it's also in the Poppa's Tree Farm I'm working). Hope the rest of your week is wonderful - XOXO

16. Love it! I've been doing it this way for years, but never thought of the dry erase line. Thanks!

17. I love this method and tell everyone I know to give it a try--so awesome! Thanks for the chart and tutorial.

18. thank you for the great tutorial (and the other great tuts as well!), especially the chart is very helpful.
greetings from Norway
Brigitte

19. Thank you:))..the chart will be very helpful!

20. First, love your Lucy header! I am a big fan! I should have found that and put it on my blog! Second, HST's are my favorite block to make, there are just endless possibilities with just a turn of a block or the change of a color!.
Cheri
quiltingnanny at yahoo dot com
www.fabricandmemories.blogspot.com

21. Thank you, I'm going next week at a patchwork meeting and I have to prepare 8sht . I have big problem to understand , but your tutorial is great.

22. The chart showing finished and unfinished sizes is very helpful. Thank you for sharing :-)

I need to clarify something for me, when you say finished sized, do you mean finished sized in the quilt? So using your measurements... if my finished size in the quilt is 2" my half square triangles after trimming measure at 2 1/2"? Thanks again, Karen

1. HI..No_Idea! lol.... yes, you are correct. 'Finished' always means the size of the block when sewn into the quilt. Unfinished size includes a 1/4" seam allowance. :)

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25. Thanks a lot for sharing this very useful tutorial!

26. You're the Best By Far !~! Many thanks for this informative, easy-to-understand tute for making these HSTs-loads of people's favorite block base.

27. Thank you for this tutorial. It was easy to understand and remember.

28. Thanks for this great chart! You explain the method so clearly!

29. I LOVE this method! Thanks for the update... I'm definitely one of those quilters that can use the extra 1/4 inch!

30. Going to try this soon! Thanks for the info and the chart!