Finally Figured Out

I've had a Sunburst/Gracie Girl quilt kit from Fat Quarter Shop for a long time--like four or five years.  I've had it cut out for a long time too.  The problem was, I couldn't figure out a way to piece together the angled cuts accurately.  I had a lightbulb moment on it last week.  Why on earth this took me so long to figure out may forever remain a mystery.  I'll write it off as middle age mental fog!
I remembered that back when cutting shapes with templates was a common technique, a lot of acrylic templates would be shaped so that the dog ears would already be nipped off prior to sewing.  Plus, the nips in the templates would help you align the pieces properly.  Marti Michell was a big promoter of this technique back in the day.  I was considering going digging in my things to find some old template shapes.  Then I remembered that I had a set of Triangle Trimmers, unused, at the ready, and pulled them out.  These are a set by Fons & Porter that is readily available at JoAnn.  The Folded Corner Clipper by Prairie Sky Quilting will also work.  I'm sure there are other, similar tools available as well; these are two that I own that I know work for this technique.

Anyway, for these strips, I used the pink triangle in the Fons & Porter set.  Just line up your edges to the template and trim off the dog ear point.
For the opposite angle, rotate the template around and repeat.
When you are ready to sew, your pieces will nicely fit together every time and you will not need to trim any dog ears off either.

Here is what the sewn unit looks like.  I do want to mention that this quilt had you cut templates from paper.  My templates weren't especially accurate since they were print outs, nor was my cutting from said templates.  Still, with the method I ended up using, the pieces were all close enough that I could still get a pretty accurate top.  Don't be afraid to use pins or gently stretch your fabric to make points line up.

Speaking of working to get your points lined up, I came across a 2013 blog post by Ebony Love of LoveBug studios that I definitely think is worth a read, including the comments.  You can also follow up with her follow up, down at the bottom of her post.
Anyway, back to quilting. Here is half of my pieced top.  I'm still working on the sewing.  Luckily, you can still find Gracie Girl (by Kassidy and Lori Holt for Riley Blake) yardage available on Etsy, so I was able to purchase matching backing yardage. I chose the aqua clock pattern.  :)  I'm hoping to finish off the top this week and quilt it next week.  I have my guild retreat this weekend, so I'll be working on other things then.
We easily finished our National Parks puzzle last week.  Once we figured out that the posters were in alphabetical order it was even easier.  We did start a new puzzle, but realized once we built the border that it won't fit on our table.  So it's in limbo for now until we decide what we want to do.
Have a great week!

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