The Triangle Jitters quilt pattern is one of the most popular patterns in the SQ library. Using just the simple half square triangle, it creates a dynamic, modern design while still remaining beginner-friendly. The fabric requirements in the pattern are designed for using yardage, however you can make it with scraps, or in this case, make a Triangle Jitters quilt with 8 fat quarters* and a background fabric!
I have a soft spot for fat quarters. I wouldn't be a quilter if I didn't! However, if you've made a handful of SQ patterns, one thing you might notice is that they usually require yardage. But did you know that unless the pattern requires strips longer than 21" (the length of a FQ) you can substitute that yardage for FQs?
A couple examples of patterns that can easily use FQs include: Mod Mountains, Indian Summer, Modern Fans and, another HST quilt, Nordic Triangles! A pretty simple conversion is to assume 1 yd. = 4 FQs. I know, duh, right? That doesn't always work out, but it's a good place to start.
*A Fat Quarter is a pre-cut of fabric measuring approximately 18" x 21". You can find an ombré FQ bundle at The Fat Quarter Shop.
How to Convert Yardage to Fat Quarters
Each pattern is a little different in what it needs, so a teeny tiny bit of math might be required when converting a pattern that uses yardage into a pattern that uses FQs. Half Square Triangle patterns are very easy to convert because you simply figure out how large you need to cut your squares and then how many of those squares can fit inside a Fat Quarter.
To make a baby Triangle Jitters quilt you need yardage of 3 main colors and then a background color. Here's the breakdown:
- Color 1: ½ yd.
- Color 2: ¾ yd.
- Color 3: ½ yd.
- Background: 1 ½ yd.
Here's a classic example for reference...
To change this quilt to be slightly scrappier and FQ-friendly, I'm going to throw Colors 1-3 into a pot and rename them Foreground. Now I have Foreground fabric and Background fabric. According to my yardage requirements I need (½ yd. + ¾ yd. + ½ yd.) 1 ¾ yd. of Foreground fabric.
If you're math savvy, you're realizing that this tutorial is titled How to Make a Triangle Jitters Quilt with 8 Fat Quarters, not 7. Well, even though I said you can usually figure out the FQ math with a simple ¼ yd. = 1 FQ conversion, that doesn't always work, in this case, it got us very close.
The pattern uses the fun 4-at-a-time HST method. For this pattern, cut 4 squares from each FQ, yielding 16 HSTs from each square pair. (I say square pair because this HST method has you stacking 1 Foreground square right sides together with 1 Background square. See the pattern for details.)
Your new fabric requirements for a FQ baby Triangle Jitters quilt look like this:
- Foreground: 8 Fat Quarters
- Background: 1 ½ yd.
Below is a very squirmy 6-week old Desi disrupting my initial Triangle Jitters layout. You can tell he didn't approve. I wasn't sold on it either, so kicking my blocks everywhere didn't phase me much.
After playing around with the blocks, I decided on grouping like fabrics together and leaning into the overall ombré look. Since my squirmy baby count has gone from one to two (Scrappy and Desi), it's imperative that I chain-piece my rows together. I used to whip out a quilt top in a weekend, but now I'm lucky if I can do it in a month. Keeping my blocks organized and in order saves me a lot of time when I actually do sit down to get some sewing done.
Make an Ombré Triangle Jitters Baby Quilt: The Fabric
The ombré fabrics used in this quilt are from V and Co., made by Moda Fabrics. A couple of these are brand new colors, so you may have to wait until stores have them in stock. I'm not completely sure when they will be available, but I think around July 2019. I'll link to the ones I can find. Contact your fav fabric store if you are curious when they will begin carrying the new colors.
These fabrics can also be easily substituted for any 8 fat quarters. If you want the ombré look, just get 8 fat quarters that are stair-stepping shades between a primary and secondary color. (Basically, pick two colors next to each other on the color wheel, i.e. green and blue, then find multiple shades of those two colors mixed together.)
And here's Desi again at 10 weeks along with his buddy, Mac. Mac was born just 4 days after Desi! Aren't they adorable together?
In the pic below I'm lying in bed trying to finish the binding on Mac's quilt before he and his mom come over. It's really hard to finish things when all you want to do is snuggle your sleeping baby. 🙂
Do you have an ever growing stash of Fat Quarter bundles? The exciting thing about that is you don't have to be limited by "Fat Quarter-friendly" quilt patterns. Learn a few conversion tricks and a whole world of quilt patterns will open up! Tell me about your favorite FQ tips and quilts in the comments!