A dear friend admired my “Pine Tree Point” quilt and commissioned me to make one for her queen size bed. (“Pine Tree Point” was designed by Bonnie K. Hunter and features string-pieced elements. Click here to see/purchase the pattern from Bonnie.) The task, enlarging the throw size quilt to queen size, was accomplished by enlarging the background frames around the trees and widening borders. The 4″ tan border plus the 8″ wide Piano Key border yields the 12″ drop my friend desires.
What would look best in the corners of the Piano Key border? I contemplated making Sixteen Patches of 2″ finished green squares, but decided mitered corners would be perfect. However, experienced quilters know that it’s tricky to obtain the perfect 45 degree angle join. If you’re a smidgeon off, the corner can be either too point-y or too tight.
Here’s the hack — make and join strip-pieced half square triangles and add them like corner squares for the border.
I cut a 9 1/4″ square from freezer paper and sliced it in half diagonally. Then I drew some lines on the paper triangles to remind me of the direction the strips should run. As shown in the lower right corner, I pieced strips of graduated lengths together and pressed the freezer paper triangle on top. Using the paper as a guide, I rotary trimmed around the triangle with a straight edge. I peeled off and re-used the paper guides for all the triangles needed.
I pinned and sewed each half square triangle to its mate using a 3/8″ seam allowance. I pressed the seam open and trimmed the half square triangle to 8 1/2,” square. I made sure the diagonal line of the ruler followed the diagonal line of the half square triangle.
With the side borders already sewn onto the quilt top, I added the half square triangles as corner squares to the strip-pieced top and bottom borders.
Ahh, doesn’t that look nice?! Easy-peasy! I stay-stitched all around the edge of the border so the stitches would not pop loose during quilting. I’ll be sure to show you the quilt once it is quilted and bound.