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These instructions will enable you to make TWO of the 6″ (finished) basket blocks shown below, WITHOUT CUTTING ANY TRIANGLES.

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Being a bit of a perfectionist, like many of us, I found that cutting triangles to make these blocks just didn’t work for me.

I looked at various instructions on loads of blogs and other websites but I have never come across this method – if it has been shown elsewhere then I am not aware of it – and so I decided to call the blocks by my blog identity.

The sizes of the pieces provides some room for error if your cutting and piecing is not quite accurate, and the units are squared up as necessary during the making process.  If you are extremely accurate in both then you could reduce the sizes as appropriate.

Cutting

Dark Fabric

One Square        5 3/4″ x 5 3/4″
Four Rectangles  2 1/4″ x 2″

Light Fabric

One Square        5 3/4″ x 5 3/4″
Two Squares       3 3/4″ x 3 3/4″

Four Rectangles  2 1/4″ x 3 3/4″

Method

Top Left Half Square Triangle (HST)

1.     Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the WRONG side of the large light square.

2.     Draw a line diagonally 1/4″ away either side of this line.

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3.     Draw a diagonal line from the same corner to corner on the RIGHT side of the large light square.

4.     Mark the centre.  Also make a mark 3/16″ on either side of this point, at right angles to the diagonal line, so it will be just inside the seam allowance.

CIMG1594 CIMG15935.   Set a compass to 1 3/4″.  Place the point on one of the marks either side of the diagonal line and draw just over half a circle to meet the diagonal line you drew.

6.     Do the same from the other point.  You will end up with a circle, slightly flattened where it meets the diagonal line.  This is the centre line of your handle.

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7.      Create your handle in which ever way you wish using this line as the centre – applique, embroidery, attaching embellishments such as rick-rack or beads etc.  I used an embroidery stitch called ‘interlaced chain stitch’ which is an old stitch of French origin.

8.      Before pressing. Some puckering has occurred.

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I recommend placing the square with embroidery face down on a towel to press.  This prevents the stitches from being flattened.

9.    After pressing.

CIMG160010.     I recommend stitching a couple of times over the very end of each handle 1/8″ in, particularly if you have used an embroidery stitch, in order to secure the stitching.  You can see where I have done this if you zoom in on the picture above.

11.     Pin decorated large light square to dark square, RIGHT sides together. and stitch on each seam line previously drawn on the large light square.

CIMG160212.     Cut apart on centre diagonal line to form 2 Half Square Triangles (HST’s) and press to the dark fabric.   CIMG1604

13.     Square up to 5″ (4 1/2″ finished) Half Square Triangles (HST’s), ensuring that you have centred the handle along the diagonal.

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Side pieces and Basket Base

1.     Join short sides of  light rectangles to long sides of dark rectangles (both sides measure 2 1/4″).  Press all seams towards the dark fabric.

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2.     Measure 3 1/4″ in from left side of HST on dark fabric.  Make a small chalk mark.

CIMG16103.     Match seam on light and dark rectangle unit to this mark, with RIGHT sides together, and sew together.  Press towards the dark fabric (which I have done) or towards the outside of the block.

CIMG16094.     Do the same on the other side of the HST but press towards the OUTSIDE of the block.  This is required so you can see where the stitching crosses for the next step.

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5.     Square the blocks up to 6 1/2″ (ensuring HST stays at 4 3/4″)

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Bottom Corner

1.     On the reverse, make a mark 1/4″ in from the outside edge on the seams of the rectangle units.

2.     With a ruler, draw a line joining these points and the point where the stitching lines of the rectangle units cross.  This should be a straight line.  If you zoom in on the photo below you will see this more clearly. (Right click and open link in new tab).

CIMG16203.     Place the light small square at the bottom corner of the block, RIGHT sides together, so that the outside edges of the dark rectangles line up with the edges of the square.

CIMG16214.     Pin and sew on the marked line.  Press towards the corner.

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5.     Draw a line 1/4″ away from  the stitched line and cut through both layers of fabric on this line.

CIMG16256.     You will be left with two small dark 1 5/8″ triangles and one 3″ triangle left over from each block, which you can use in some other patchwork design.

7.    Square up your block to 6 1/2″ (ensuring HST stays at 4 3/4″)

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