Friday, January 27, 2017

My Secrets to Piecing 60-Degree Triangles

For this tutorial I am going to show you how to sew 60-degree triangles together into pairs, then rows & then put the rows together. 

3 1/2" triangles are shown here. The concepts are the same for other size triangles cut from the Hex N More, Sidekick and Super Sidekick rulers. 

The triangles are all arranged with the blunt point up or down. 

Take the 2nd triangle and place it on top of the first, right sides together. 

Alignment is key. Make sure they are exactly on top of each other before sewing them together with a 1/4" seam. Press seams open.

Here is the sewn pair back together with the other triangles. 

After sewing the 1/4" seam, check to measure that it is accurate. 

I know this can feel tedious, but accuracy matters. Any mistake in seam allowances at this point will just compound as you continue with your project. 

If the seam is off, make adjustments with your machine or where you place the fabric to get it accurate. It is best to stop and correct any seam allowance issues now.

Repeat the steps with other pairs as shown. If your row has an odd number of triangles, just leave the last one as a single.

Next we will sew two sets together.

Flip the right set up and over on top of the left set as shown. Align the point of the 3rd triangle with the dog ear created from sewing the first set together.

Align the top right corner point of the 2nd triangle with the dog ear created from sewing the second set together.

Sew a 1/4" seam. Press the seams open.

Again check to measure that it is accurate.

Here are the sewn 4 triangles back together with the other triangles & sets.

Finish sewing together all of the sets and single triangles in each row.

Confirm that the points of each triangle are 1/4" in from the edge of the seam. This way they will be exactly where you want them to be once you start sewing rows together.

Place the two rows right sides together. Put a pin in at the exact point where the triangles meet.

Carefully push the pin through to the second piece where the triangles meet.

Your piece should look like this. Now put two pins in the piece as you would normally pin, one on either side of this straight pin. Be careful to make sure that you keep this pin perpendicular to the seam when adding the other two pins. Once those pins have been added you can remove this pin. 

Repeat at the other intersection of triangle points. Sew the two rows together with a quarter inch seam. Press open.

Now you have 6 triangles points that meet up perfectly!

Here's the back of my completed piece so that you can see where all of the seams are etc.

My finished piece measures 6 1/2" tall x 11" wide at the middle. 

Practice and accuracy are my secrets to making points match when sewing triangles and other 60-degree shapes. 

To learn more about how to add blunt points to 60-degree diamonds, check out my Sidekick Diamonds Tutorial.

To practice sewing with 60-degree triangles, check out my Picnic Placemat Tutorial.


©2017 - 2022 Blog post written by Julie Herman
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Unknown said...

It never occurred to me to use a 1/2" ruler to check a proper seam allowance. On a pressed open seam, it makes that check so fast and easy. Even on a closed seam, it will be easier than using a larger ruler would be. Genius!

Kathy said...

Very helpful tutorial, thank you! I just finished making a baby Trail Mix and I learned the hard way that accuracy does matter. Luckily I learned early on in the project. :)

Kim said...

Where can I buy a half-inch ruler like the one you show?

Julie @ Jaybird Quilts said...

I got mine a few years ago at a JoAnns I believe.

QuiltShopGal said...

Thank you Julie. I'm always looking for ways to improve my precision piecing skills. And, I'm actually planning a quilt using 60 degree pieces, so perfect timing.


mennikelly said...

Thank you for the detailed information. I'm looking forward to using it when I start on my hexagon quilt.

Charming bubble 52 said...

Here in the dark depths of England I confess to never having seen the ruler you are using. It would be the perfect tool for one of my quilt students who struggles with accuracy. Thanks for the tutorial as well. Where might I get one or a half a dozen of these?

Ellen T. said...

Would you consider a tutorial with hexagons and triangles with the same level of detail this one has?

Marion said...

oh my gosh, thanks for this! This is clear and easily understood.

Rene' said...

Thank you Julie for sharing your tips. I struggle with accuracy when sewing triangles.

Teje Karjalainen said...

Thank you Julie for these great tips! I so happy to have your HexNMore ruler! x Teje

Neko said...

This pictorial tutorial is so wonderful to watch/read. It matters not that some may have quilted for years I always have learned something from someone. Thanks

Ms. Gwyn said...

Thank you for this tutorial! I wish I knew to press my seams open and had your ruler to cut triangles when I made a triangle tree pillow two Christmases ago. I was lucky that my points came together so well with the seams pressed to one side. (The reciever of the pillow loved it.) Your technique will be so much less bulky and accurate when I make myself a new pillow for next Christmas! I love your rulers!

Jo Ann H said...

Thanks for the great tips in this tutorial. The photos really helped too. I love your patterns and products. Keep them coming!

School Street Primitives said...

I admit I've avoided triangles, but your incredibly detailed tutorial makes it look easy and do-able! Thank you!

Unknown said...

Hi Julie,

Love the tutorial on sewing 60° angles together with a greater degree of precision. This lesson is very valuable for quilting and everyday sewing to make an average quilt a spectacular quilt. Details, like the ones you explain, matter a lot!

This is a great (much needed) review tutorial. I like the clarity you use in explaining your technique to achieve perfect points and general perfection. Love your quilts and your sense of design.


CJ said...

Perfect! Thank you so much!!

SewOverwhelmed said...

Such a great tutorial. Thank you! Now on to my king size quilt with confidence!

Unknown said...

Your instructions are clear. Your pictures are perfect. The best I have seen! Thank you for all your inspiration to this old quilter!!! <3