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Fabric Requirements -- Clue 1

Overall quilt size is about 50" by 60"; yardage includes fabric for two borders, but you can easily make it larger (by adding borders) or smaller (by not using the included borders).


Light 1:   3/4 yard

Light 2:   2/3 yard (slightly darker than light 1 and coordinating)

Focus print:  1/2 yard

Medium 1:  1/4 yard (NOT a fat quarter)

Medium 2:  1/4 yard (NOT a fat quarter -- coordinate with Medium 1)

Dark 1:  1/4 yard (NOT a fat quarter)

Dark 2:  1 yard (coordinate with Dark 1)

Clue 2

For the remaining instructions, please refer to this key for fabrics:


Light 1:    L1

Light 2:    L2

Focus print:   FP

Medium 1:   M1

Medium 2:   M2

Dark 1:   D1

Dark 2:   D2


Here is a partial cutting list. You are not going to be cutting all your fabric ahead of time – some pieces will be cut just before you use them. All strips refer to WOF or Width of Fabric (about 40″).


Cut 5 strips 3 1/2″ wide by the WOF of the FP. Crosscut (or subcut) these strips into (50) 3 1/2″     


Cut 1 strip 3 1/2″ wide by the WOF of the L2. Crosscut (or subcut) these strips into (10) 3 1/2″

     squares. If you have fabric that lends itself well to fussy cutting, you can center a design in these


Cut 5 more strips 3 1/2″ wide by the WOF of the L2. These will be used in the border.

Cut 2 strips 2″ wide by the WOF of the M1

Cut 2 strips 2″ wide by the WOF of the M2

Cut 4 strips 2″ wide by the WOF of the L1.

Cut 6 strips 4″ wide by the WOF of the D2. These are used in the border.


You are now ready to begin stitching:   This quilt uses half square triangles (HSTs.)  In this clue, you will get cutting directions for making HST blocks using the traditional method.  If you chose to use another method, be aware of the amount of fabric that you have on hand.

In the traditional method of making half square triangles, you put two squares of fabric right sides together and draw a diagonal line on the back of the lighter square. Sew 1/4″ each on either side of that drawn line then cut on the line and press to the dark. To use a Quick Quarter Ruler (pictured below), just place the ruler on the diagonal of the back of the light square. You can draw your cutting line through the slot in the center of the ruler. The two sides of the ruler are exactly 1/4″ from that center slot, so when you draw a line along the sides, you are drawing your sewing line.

This video tutorial by Quiltbugs can help you understand how to make HST blocks using the traditional method:


We will need 40 D1/L1 combination HSTs for this mystery.


To make the D1/L1 HSTs the traditional way, start by cutting (2) strips 4″ wide by the WOF from both the D1 and the L1 fabric. Crosscut (or subcut) these strips into 4″ squares. You will need 20 squares from each color.


Draw a diagonal line on the back of the 20 L1 squares.  Place each L1 square right sides together with a D1 Square. Sew 1/4″ from both sides of the diagonal line. Cut on the solid line and press to the dark.


The actual formula for making HSTs using this method is to add 7/8″ to the size of the finished HST and cut your squares to that size. I had you cut your squares 1/8″ larger than needed so, in theory, you should now have to square them up. Measure your blocks and square them up to 3-1/2″ (unfinished) if needed.

Clue 3

You will be using your D2 and your L1 fabric (refer to the    fabric key) to make 40 more 3-1/2” half square triangles  (unfinished) using your favorite method.

Next, make four HSTs of the D2 fabric and the L2 fabric.  If you need to cut a little off the strips you cut for the border, it’s okay — there’s enough extra.

Clue 4

Sew the (5) 3 1/2″ wide strips of the L2  fabric end to end. These are used in the border.  Miter the joins if you like.

Sew the (6) 4″ wide strips of the D2 end to end. These are used in the border.  Miter the joins if you like.

Barbara Black offers  a tutorial on her blog on mitering joins:

Now let’s move on to the 2” wide strips that you cut in Step 1.  Sew the M1 strips to the L1 strips and press the seam to the dark.  Make two sets.  Do the same thing to the M2 and L1 strips.  Make sure you sewn strips measure 3-1/2” BEFORE cutting.

Crosscut (or subcut) those strips into 3-1/2” square two-part blocks.  You will need 20 M1/L1 blocks and 20 M2/L1 blocks.

     20 blocks                         20 blocks

You are done with this clue! 

Clue 5


You do have put all those parts and pieces together before you are done.  Lets do a quick inventory.  You should now have:

(40)      D1/L1 3 1/2″ HSTs (unfinished)

(40)      D2/L1 3 1/2″ HSTs

(4)        D2/L2 3 1/2″ HSTs

(50)      3 1/2″” squares of the Focal

(10)      3 1/2″ squares of the L2

(1)        really long 3 1/2″ wide strip of the L2

(1)        really long 4″ wide strip of D2

(20)      M1/L1 two-part 3 1/2″ square blocks

(20)      M2/L1 two-part 3 1/2″ square blocks


Using the D1/L1  HSTs, the (10) 3 1/2″ L2 squares, and the (40) two-part

blocks you just made, make 10 of these blocks. Sew the 3 1/2″ blocks in 

horizontal rows, pressing the seams of the top and bottom row in toward

the two-part square.  If you would like, you can fussy cut the center

3 1/2″ square of this block.

Press the seams of the center row out, away from the center square. This

will help your seams “nestle” (just touch each other) when you sew the

rows together.  Press from the back to make sure none of your seams

twisted.  Square up to 9 1/2″.

If you already have Clue 6, do not begin it until you’ve finished Clue 5!!

Clue 6


Remember: do not begin Clue 6 until you’ve finished Clue 5!!

Using the D2/L1 HSTs and the (50) 3 1/2″ squares of Focal, make 10 of

these blocks. Again, press the seams of the top and bottom rows towards

the outer block (the caramel square) and the seams of the middle block

toward the center. Press from the back to double check and make sure

none of your seams have twisted.  Square up to 9 1/2″ if needed.

I bet you have four HSTs (the D2/L2 HSTs) left over!  Don’t worry about

them, we will use them in the last clue.

Clue 7 (final!)

Layout your blocks in the following fashion . . .


Once the layout is correct, sew the blocks together in rows.  Press the seams of the even rows to the right and the odd rows to the left. Again, this is to help them lay flat against each other which keeps the bulk down in your quilt.  When you are done, give the quilt one last pressing, double checking to make sure you haven’t twisted any seams.

MEASURE for your borders, don’t just sew on a border and cut it off when you get to the end. That is a recipe for wavy borders. Measure your quilt through the middle horizontally.  It will probably measure 36 1/2″ but use your personal measurement. Measure the quilt through the center vertically (probably 45 1/2″) as well.  Cut two of the L2 borders to the vertical measurement and two to the horizontal measurement.  If you are scratching your head and saying, “But that won’t work, the borders aren’t long enough!” you are right.  Remember those four leftover HSTs?  We are going to add one to both ends of the horizontal border strip, like so:



Sew the two side borders on first, matching the center of the border with the center of the quilt.  Ease to fit if necessary.  NOW you can add the top and bottom borders with the HST at either end.  You have just framed your quilt.

Press your quilt and add the last four borders, made from the D2 fabrics, measuring through the center again as you did for the first border.  This method is more time consuming than simply sewing a border to a quilt and cutting off any excess, but it does get the quilt to lay perfectly flat.




















We hope you had fun with this mystery quilt and that  you will bring it to show off to the August meeting.  Thanks for helping us solve the mystery!

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