Arrow Baby Quilt with HST’s Plus a Giveaway!

Arrow Baby Quilt with Half-Square Triangles by Lee Heinrich

Half-square triangles are the bread-and-butter of the quilting world: You can’t make much without them! But yet, they are a finicky unit to make, and a little inaccuracy in your finished HSTs can put you in a world of hurt. Here are two different half-square triangle tutorials that appeared on We All Sew a while back, this Half Square Triangles tutorial and this Half Square Triangle Piecing Tip. As you can see, there are nearly as many ways to make HSTs as there are HST designs—but most of them involve marking diagonal lines onto the backs of squares and/or squaring up the finished unit. A time-consuming necessity, right?

Arrow Baby Quilt with half-square triangles by Lee Heinrich

Maybe not! If you’ve ever used HST papers, you know that they can cut down on the time it takes to make these units. And I recently released a new product that brings HST papers into the digital age: It’s called Perfect HSTs. These templates will allow you to make HSTs without marking the backs of fabric or trimming them later, speeding up the process considerably! (My PDF includes templates for 10 different sizes of HSTs, plus all the fabric requirements and cutting instructions for various quantities, so I’ve done all the math for you! You can purchase and download the templates by clicking here.)

Arrow Baby Quilt with half-square triangles by Lee Heinrich

So today I thought I would take you through the process of making this adorable Arrow Baby Quilt that I just made for my newborn nephew, using my Perfect HST templates. I’m giving you the instructions using Perfect HSTs, and I’m also giving you instructions to do it the “old-fashioned way”—because yes, we’re quilters. We do still like the old-fashioned way from time to time. : )

And, I’m going to give away a PDF of my Perfect HST templates to one We All Sew reader! Just comment below to enter the giveaway—one winner will be randomly selected on Friday, March 9th.

Arrow Baby Quilt with half-square triangles by Lee Heinrich

So, want to make an Arrow Baby Quilt of your own? It’s super easy and comes together lightning-fast!

Finished size: 36″ x 51″

Materials to Make an Arrow Baby Quilt

• 6 fat quarters (or straight-cut quarter yards)
• 1-5/8 yard of white (background fabric)
• 1-1/2 yards of backing fabric
• 1/2 yard of binding fabric

Cutting list (if using the “Perfect HST” templates):
• Cut 3 pieces 7-1/2″ x 9-1/2″ from each fat quarter
• Cut 18 pieces 7-1/2″ x 9-1/2″ from the white (background fabric)
• Cut 5 strips 3-1/2″ x 36-1/2″ from the white (background fabric)

Cutting list (if using the standard HST method):
• Cut 12 squares 4″ x 4″ from each fat quarter
• Cut 72 squares 4″ x 4″ from white (background fabric)
• Cut 5 strips 3-1/2″ x 36-1/2″ from the white (background fabric)

Make the HSTs (if using the “Perfect HST” templates):

Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced
1. Purchase and download my Perfect HST Templates (found here.) Print 18 copies of the 3″ Finished HST template (found on page 11 of the PDF). Be sure to print your template at Actual Size (100% scaling). This setting can be found under “Page Sizing and Handling” in the print dialogue box (“Shrink to Fit” is often the default, which will result in HSTs that are too small!). After printing, use a ruler to check the template’s 1″ scale to ensure the size printed accurately. You can print your templates on standard office paper/copy paper, or use blank sheets of newsprint for even easier tearing later.

Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced

2. Cut out the templates on the outer dashed line. The template size is designed to approximately match up to the 7-1/2″ x 9-1/2″ fabric pieces you cut earlier.

Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced

3. Stack two pieces of fabric, right sides together, as shown. Place the trimmed paper template on top of the stack, printed side of the paper facing up.

Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced

4. Sew on the dotted lines that say “Sew here,” through all three layers (the two pieces of fabric and the paper template). Before you start sewing, be sure to turn down the stitch length on your sewing machine—I bring mine to about 1.5. The shorter stitch length will help you tear off the paper when you’re done stitching.

Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced
Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced

5. Using a rotary cutter and quilting ruler, cut along the solid lines marked with scissors icons. Cut the template’s vertical lines first, then the horizontal and diagonal lines.

Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced

6. Carefully remove the paper by folding it back along the stitching and tearing along the seam line. Press HSTs open. No squaring up needed!

Make the HSTs (if using the standard HST method):1. Mark a diagonal line from corner to corner on the backs of the (72) 4″ white squares.

2. Pair up one 4″ colored square and one 4″ white square, with right sides facing. Stitch 1/4″ away on each side of marked diagonal line. Cut HSTs apart on the marked diagonal line and press open.

3. Square up each HST to 3-1/2″ unfinished.

Complete the quilt (both methods):

1. Join HSTs to create a four-patch block as shown.

2. Make 6 four-patch blocks in each color, for a total of 36 blocks.

3. Join the 6 four-patch blocks of each color into a row, as shown.

4. Assemble the quilt top by joining the rows of blocks and and the 3-1/2″ x 36″ sashing strips.Arrow Baby Quilt with half-square triangles by Lee Heinrich

5. Quilt and bind as desired. I quilted in a wide zig-zag pattern 1/2″ apart for more angled movement in the completed quilt.

Arrow Baby Quilt by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced

You could be the Lucky WeAllSew winner of a PDF of my Perfect HST templates used in this tutorial!

Perfect HST Templates by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced

All you have to do is post a comment below and answer the question, “What is your favorite half-square triangle quilt design?” The the giveaway is open through Friday, March 9th!

The giveaway is open to residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia. One comment per fan. Comment must be submitted to the blog by Friday, March 9th at 11:59 PM Central Time. Winner will be chosen randomly. Winner will be notified by email and will have 48 hours to contact to claim the prize.

197 thoughts on “Arrow Baby Quilt with HST’s Plus a Giveaway!

    1. My favorite HST quilt is the Radiating Star using extra large blocks for a quick project. My quilting group is devoting a year to HST projects. We are learning many new and fun techniques. Your templates look like a great option. Can’t wait to try them.

  1. I can’t say that I have a favorite HST quilt, since I haven’t really done many of them. But I absolutely love this arrow quilt and will be making one.

  2. I am in the process right now of making a baby quilt with pink hearts that use LOTS of 1/2 square triangles. Your template would come in very handy!! Your quilt is so sweet. I have 3 baby quilts to make in the near future and this would be a great one for one of the moms! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Love this pattern, this is now joined several others on my “must do” board. Projects are shuffled each time, I know this one will work it’s way to the top quickly!

  4. I love this quilt and how easy it is to accomplish. Colors are endless…can’t wait to start. It would also be easy to increase the size of the quilt…width or length wise.

  5. Love the pattern. I’m not keen on paper piecing (hate all the little bits of paper and wastefulness), but if these templates will keep me from having to square up every HST, they’re worth a try.

  6. So fresh looking, I love the pattern and the templates make it look easy! I haven’t actually made it yet but my favorite HST quilt design is Ripple by the Happy Kiwi Quilt Studio. The whole thing is different size HSTs but I might go crazy making it…

  7. I love that quilt. I am finishing a quilt with lots of hst pieces and it uses the cat’s cradle ruler by creative grid rulers. I really like making sailboat quilts for baby boys and that requires lots of half square triangle squares.

  8. I’m in love with this pattern and this method! I just finished a half square triangle baby quilt that just laid out random triangles. It was ok, but nothing near as beautiful and dynamic as this pattern. And after squaring up all of those triangles individually I said that I’d never do half squares again. But now I can’t WAIT to get the templates and make this stunning quilt!

  9. I have heard of your template and wondered what it would look like. What a wonderful idea! I would surely use this over and over! Thank you for gifting the template to one lucky person.

  10. I love the arrow design the most for HST. Your paper piecing method is a great way for beginner quilters to make the HST perfect! I love making HST with scraps from another project. Just one more seam and you get a bonus HST!

  11. I love this quilt! I plan to make it for my grandson as well as my great-niece. While using your template would make it so much easier, I do have the ability to make it the regular way. I would love to receive your template free!

  12. I love this pattern. What is my fave HST pattern? Pinwheel. I think I use that one all the time for centers of other blocks, for the disappearing pinwheels.
    Thank you for the opportunity to try out this quilt pattern too.

  13. The baby arrow quilt is a favorite! I really enjoy using the half square triangles, they are so versatile and provide such a variety of designs. I need to give this design a try soon.

  14. I love this pattern and it is quick and easy enough to use for the community service quilts that I make for foster kids. I love chevron patterns, there is so much movement in them.

  15. I have been in a world of hurt with HSTs and it was painful. Your templates look like they would take a lot of stress out of making them. Darling quilt in your tutorial. Thanks.

  16. I am new to quilting and have made HSTs using the traditional method but this looks like a great way to make them. I’m definitely going to give this a try. Thank you for the template!!

  17. I am expecting a new grandson this fall. His parents both are aviators with the USMC. They have decided the theme for the nusrery will be….guesses?

    Airplanes and helicopters!

    This design needs to go in there as it reminds me of the marks on runways! I am really new to quilting, but ready to be challenged and succeed!

  18. Love the design and colors in this quilt. I have only made basic quilts from jelly rolls but this looms very simple. Would love to try it out. Thank you.

  19. Willing to try…usually make them a bit bigger and then trim and square to size! Biggest problem is stretching them on the bias….still have not found the perfect method!

  20. Favorite pattern w the half square triangles is from Cluck Sew; Playful 2. Had to make 63 pinwheels, and it would be a lot easier with the PDF templates.

  21. Thought I had a favorite quilt pattern using HSTs in a flying geese design, but your pattern is my new favorite. Love the combination of color with the simple lines and design. So clean looking.

  22. My favorite old fashioned half-square triangle pattern is Pinwheel. It is easy to piece and looks complicated when it is finished and quilted.. I also like flying geese blocks and use HST’s to make them more quickly. I love the idea of the HST templates that you have available. They would certainly make the cutting of either pattern go much faster.

    I like the baby quilt that you demonstrated. The zig zag quilting looks easy enough to do and adds a lot to the design.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win the templates.

  23. As I am in the process of moving and my sewing machines are in storage, any quilt pattern looks great right now. Hopefully in a few weeks, I will be settled and can get back to quilting.

  24. I made a scrappy HST doll quilt with matching sheet and pillow case. My grand daughter loved it. I make a lot of baby quilts for the NICU at our local hospital. This would be a perfect pattern and looks so easy (no squaring up). Would love to win your pattern for HST’s.

  25. HST are the bane of most quilters. I love the idea of the new templates and can’t wait to try them out! Another cute and quick pattern for the stash of quilts I’m building for future great grandchildren…

  26. There are so many block and quilt patterns that use hst. I have made lots of churn dash blocks and pinwheel blocks and friendship star blocks and…
    Way too many to pick one!

  27. This looks like a faster way to get accurate HST’s and I’d like to make an Arrow quilt as my next charity quilt for my guild. We make and donate about 200 quilts a year to the Ronald McDonald House.

  28. Love HSTs, but setting them in rows or surrounding a nice panel is as creative as I have gotten. Am more than eager to try your pattern – definitely before the end of this year.

  29. I love the arrows quilt design; it looks so modern. Unfortunately, I have a problem with consistently creating HST. Your templates look like the perfect solution.

  30. Just getting ready to unpack my new 770 after a big move to a new house and having my own sewing room. This looks like it might be a good first project!

  31. What an awesome way to make a bright baby quilt. HST’s make it a simple project that can be put together in no time whatsoever. Thanks for sharing the idea!

  32. I’ve tried HSTs previously but alas, never completed one because the trial blocks never went together correctly.
    I’d like to make a Carpenter’s square quilt to honor my Grandfather.
    As a happy Bernina owner, I just want to say thank you for this website. I look forward to seeing new posts.

  33. I love this idea! I haven’t made many half-square triangles but would love to win the pdf templates to try. I like the Arrow quilt and I’d like to make it if I win the templates.😀

  34. I too like pinwheels and chevrons from hst’s. I have 3 baby quilts to make this spring – this will definitely be one I make! Thanks for the tutorial 🙂

  35. I really like the Pinwheel Sampler by Rachel Griffith Designs, it uses lots of half square triangles. I think your templates would really be a time saver for any half square triangle project. Thanks for showing your techniques, this quilt is on my list of possibilities for a baby quilt next time I need one.

  36. Love this quilt! Am getting ready to start a baby quilt with my 9 year-old granddaughter, who loves sewing! (Chip off the old block!). She has selected her fabrics, but not the design, yet. I am planning on using HST’s because they are so versatile! I will definitely include this version as one of her design options…Thank you!

  37. It’s about time I find the perfect method for making HSTs as mine always turn out wonky or small. The “draw a line and sew slightly to the right of it” method that needs to be done larger to allow for trimming is getting old. Great little quilt and pattern. kthurn(at)bektel(dot)com

  38. I made a rockstar quilt last year, made up of hst. It’s the largest quilt I’ve made, and Im still finding time some nights to quilt little bits of it.

  39. I love Lee Heinrich’s patterns and have done a couple. Modern and colorful. I have a new great grand-daughter coming in a few months. I’d better get busy.


  40. What a great idea using a paper template. Sure takes out the worry of working with bias cuts. Like the baby quilt pattern also. Need to try this one. Thanks for the tutorial.

  41. I’ve never used triangles in a quilt before, so I’ve not looked at patterns that include them. This baby quilt is lovely, and you’ve made it look as if I could do it, too! Thanks so much for the inspiration and for such a generous giveaway.

  42. I love this quilt and it’s perfect timing for a baby quilt project I need to complete a.s.a.p. for a friend of mine! She’s having a girl so I will change the colors to oranges pinks and violet on pale silver grey background. Can’t wait

  43. Lee, your HST templates would be a perfect time saver! I have the top made for the Postcard From Sweden quilt and it’s my favorite HST design. I’m hoping to finish it this year so I can use it in my home!

  44. HSTs are used in a lot of quilts. I love the Arrow Baby quilt. I also saw a quilt on Sewing With Nancy. These are just two I could make easier with the HST system. What a great idea!!!

  45. This is an adorable quilt. I’m sure my great niece would love for me to one for her. Delectable Mountains is one of my favorite Quilt designs. It would be so much more accurate and fun with templates .

  46. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE HST’s. They are my go to block. In fact it is one of the first blocks I introduce new quilters to. My thinking is if they can master HST’s, they can get just about anything else I throw at them 😀

  47. I currently am making Rainbow Dreams that is all HST. My hisband picked the pattern out for our bed. But I am always drawn to these arrow quilts too. I would love to try this baby quilt pattern. We have 2 new arrivals expected in the next couple months, so perfect timing.

  48. I want to make this quilt! It is my “style” so having your tool would be so nice because I would use it a lot. I love to make baby quilts too so I really appreciate this pattern.

  49. This will surely be the first I try. I look for simple to make quilt tops, as I donate them to my sister’s church group, and now am making lap quilts for veteran’s homes. This is lovely.

  50. I have typically shied away from hsts because of the hassle, but this looks so easy! This baby quilt is eye-catching and might even be a joy to complete with the paper templates 🙂

  51. I am a fairly new quilter, but have made a few HST quilts, with varying success. I would love to try your template. My favorite HST pattern? Your arrow quilt might be my new favorite!

  52. I just finished a self designed tablerunner using HST’s. Your tutorial would have been helpful and am looking forward to using your patterns as I like HST’s, especially if they don’t need to be squared.

  53. I especially like the HST pattern that looks like opened envelopes. I’ve forgotten the name. I can hardly wait to do this one, though. I love the modern look!

  54. Love the quilt. I am interested in the pattern and how to cut the pieces with a pattern. I have not tried this method and would like to.
    Thanks for all of the interesting projects and tips.

  55. I’m still looking for the perfect HST method. I’ve made them before but they come out skewed most times. So I will have to give your method a try. I hope to win!

  56. My favorite quilt patterns using HST’s are pinwheel quilts. I just LOVE them!
    Thank you for the great pattern and tutorial! I think using your papers to make this quilt would save lots of time. Which would leave more time to make more quilts 🙂

  57. Beautiful quilt. Today may favorite half-square quilt pattern is this one.!!!!
    I have a grandbaby coming in June so would love to make this!
    Great tutorial!

  58. I absolutely LOVE this design, so it is my favorite HST quilt pattern!!! And I love to paper piece, totally love the accuracy this gives me. Thanks for the tutorial and giveaway!

  59. I love HST’s. I made my son a king size quilt with the rippling star pattern which was almost all HST. This would have made it much simpler to get them all correct.

  60. This is my favorite HST quilt design. I made a similar one for my grandson recently, but it took longer than I expected. Excited to do another using this pattern and tutorial! I know it will save lots of time. Thanks so much.

  61. What a cute quilt!! I still need to make quilts for 4 (of 6) of our Grands!! I’d love to win this HST TEMPLATE and see the difference using it as opposed to one of the “traditional” ways!! (Those 4 Grands say “Thank you!” in advance! 😉)

  62. My pet peeve is having to square up all my HST’s after going to the trouble of marking, sewing, cutting and the process looks so easy with your templates! Thank you for creating these!!

    1. I forgot to add that I have no favorite HST pattern – or method – as I am relatively new to quilting. I have a feeling that this will become my favorite method!

  63. I would love to win the templates. I am pretty new to quilting so do not have a favorite quilt but would love to try your baby quilt using the templates.

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