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Square + Square = Magic Hourglass

January 10th, 2011

I’m sure every quilter has the same kindling and thrill I do - you see a square of fabric and it begs you to transform it into something new.
Double Hourglass 1

So I turned 2 squares into 1 hourglass.  A magic hourglass.  One square of a print, one square of background fabric.  Any size square will work as long as two rules of thumb are followed (more on that ahead).  For my potholder (which is headed to Heather’s new red & aqua rockin’ kitchen), I made four magic hourglasses starting with 5″ squares - and each one finishes at almost it’s original size no matter what the size of square you start with.  All seams are ¼”.
Double Hourglass 2

1) For each print square and background square - cut in half diagonally.  Red fabric by Patty.

2) Cut each triangle in half long-wise.  Rule of thumb #1:  Find your half measurement.  It does not have to be an exact half, but do use the measurement you’ve chosen consistently on all your blocks of that size.  Aqua fabric by Mo.
Double Hourglass 3

3) Trim ⅝” off (and toss) one end of the trapezoid. Rule of thumb #2 - this measurement is etched in stone and is used for every size block.  Charm, Layer Cake… whatever size.
Double Hourglass 4

4) Join a background triangle to print trapezoid/print triangle to background trapezoid to make a triangle unit.  Press to the print. Because you’re working with the motherload of bias edges, press gently with steam.
Double Hourglass 5

5) Audition triangle units - another option beside a double hourglass is to make a square-in-a-square-ish block (how cool is that!).  Red fabric by Bari, aqua fabric by me.
Double Hourglass 6
Double Hourglass 7

6) Join triangle units to make magic hourglass block.
Double Hourglass  8

7) Trim of dog-ears, join blocks and make something.
Double Hourglass 9

And now I will cook something. Hahahahaha - I kill me.
Double Hourglass 10

Posted in Make Something |

54 Responses

  1. The fabulous Christina allegedly said:

    So fun! I can’t believe I haven’t tried these before. They are for sure on the [enormous] to-do list now!

  2. The fabulous Sonia allegedly said:

    Wow, I love it, I will have to give this a go. You make it look so easy. I will email pic when I get it done : ) Thanks for sharing.

  3. The fabulous pam allegedly said:

    OMG YRSFS. That is such a clever block. And wow, need to pin that cute pot and pan into my envy board. gotta go, pin ya later. xo

  4. The fabulous fiberdoodles allegedly said:

    I absolutely LOVE this! Thanks for sharing!!

  5. The fabulous janine b allegedly said:

    as we say affectionally in oz….you are such a dag!! :)

  6. The fabulous wishes, true and kind allegedly said:

    You finished it! Despite SHY distractions!

  7. The fabulous Megan allegedly said:

    Hmmmm…do I see a ten-minute tute in your future?????

  8. The fabulous simone allegedly said:

    Love it! And once again you make it look easy, so why not have a go!

  9. The fabulous Julia allegedly said:

    what a fun, easy way to make dhg blocks.
    the last time i made this pattern i almost cried because of all the trimming, folding etc. (they were made of rectangles…ugh!).
    looks fabulous!

  10. The fabulous Connie allegedly said:

    Clever, as usual, Zombie!
    And a belated Happy new year to you.

  11. The fabulous Jackie allegedly said:

    Great pot holder!! She will love it!! Hmmm… were you cooking Chinese Take out?? Just curious.

  12. The fabulous kern allegedly said:

    Those colors are wonderful together!

  13. The fabulous jenn allegedly said:

    I really love this…and I really want to try it. But I got a little queasy with the “set in stone” part and now I’m sure it won’t turn out right. I’ve never been good at numbers (…or measuring accurately). So, as usual, I’ll wing it. If you see a botched version posted somewhere around my neck of the blogosphere, please don’t take offense. :)

  14. The fabulous Kelly allegedly said:

    So sweet, or should I write…Sew Sweet! You started it. I think I will go cook something, too. :) ~Kelly

  15. The fabulous DianeP allegedly said:

    Thank you Monica! You have the best eye for color and come up with the cutest things to make!

    Definitely will have to try this at the quilting retreat next weekend. Since I won’t risk getting it dirty (they do feed us), it’ll be the perfect time to try it.

  16. The fabulous Mary Ann allegedly said:

    Cute and a very nice tutorial as well. Now as well as the Go baby pam is making me get I’ll have to get a new laptop so i can consult this as I cut! Hmm…do they have a die for this, think I’ll go look!

  17. The fabulous Vicki allegedly said:

    This one is a keeper! And I love the colors:)

  18. The fabulous Thimbleanna allegedly said:

    Very, very cute! Will we ever tire of red and aqua??? I think not.

  19. The fabulous duff allegedly said:

    don’t you just love it when creativity strikes and it works perfectly? Kudos!!
    I would caution against cooking–something might get food on it and that leads to laundry. See? Double no-no.

  20. The fabulous Cindy allegedly said:

    This IS awesome - fun - smart - and you’ll find me making one SOON !!!

  21. The fabulous MichelleB allegedly said:

    Very, very cool. And of course, the colors and pictures are just lovely.

  22. The fabulous Maggi allegedly said:

    This is beautiful, I just love these colors together! Thanks for the tutorial!

  23. The fabulous Sherry allegedly said:

    I love the happy vintage colors you used! They look perfect together!

    Sherry @ A Happy Valentine

  24. The fabulous Jessie allegedly said:

    These are so cute! I am thinking a couple of these would make a cute mug rug!

  25. The fabulous Mary allegedly said:

    This looks so easy and fun! Thanks so much! I can’t wait to try it out - wouldn’t a whole quilt of those be awesome!

  26. The fabulous Sally allegedly said:

    Those are adorable! I love the fabric, too. Did you know that Karen is planning an aqua-and-red theme for her Christmas tree and packages in 2011? I’m thinking she should use this fabric for gift wrap!

  27. The fabulous Kathleen allegedly said:

    You know…..frozen pizza counts as cooking ;-)

  28. The fabulous blop allegedly said:

    The block is amazing, but what is REALLY amazing, is you are going to cook something…you are soooo funny!! How on earth would you have time to cook when your brain is busy cooking up more quilting ideas!! I think you should write a “cook” book of ideas!!!! xxoxoxoxo

  29. The fabulous Jen in NY allegedly said:

    Oh that’s pretty. Should I try it?? What am I saying, of course I should try it! You do make it look easy, but I’m sure I can goof it up somehow! Cooking…oh Monica, you are funny!

  30. The fabulous jen duncan allegedly said:

    Great pictures and great pattern Monica. Thanks for the bright spot in my evening!

  31. The fabulous AnnieO allegedly said:

    I now know exactly what I’m going to do with some of the charm squares I won from you (which I have been hoarding)! Great tutorial, love the magic!

  32. The fabulous Leslie Schmidt allegedly said:

    Besides this being a fabulous idea, you make me snort out loud with your comments. You kill me, too!

  33. The fabulous Karin allegedly said:

    Oh, my gosh! How cute and easy you’ve made these blocks! I might even be brave enough to try one. Or two, or three….Thanks, Monica. :)

  34. The fabulous Kaye Prince allegedly said:

    This is awesome Monica! I’m definitely going to be testing this block out!

  35. The fabulous Emily allegedly said:

    What cute little blocks. Thanks for sharing the how to.

  36. The fabulous Cherri allegedly said:

    That tute is sooooo zombielicious! I am heading to my machine right now to make one or two or seven! Thanks. I will be expecting a tute a month now…no pressure…:-)

  37. The fabulous Sew Create It - Jane allegedly said:

    What a cool technique!! Thanks for the tutorial!

  38. The fabulous Cheryl allegedly said:

    ooooooooo, ahhhhhhhh!! Love everything about this project…yummy colors!!

  39. The fabulous Cindy allegedly said:

    cute,lovely, wonderful, sweet….as usual. I wouldn’t expect anything else from my cute, lovely, wonderful, sweet friend. :)

  40. The fabulous Sabine allegedly said:

    Oh Monica, how amazing is that????
    It looks great and you´ve done a fantastic job. And as always the colors…..love the combination!!!!
    Ich wünsche dir einen schönen Tag und ganz liebe Grüße
    Sabine xxx

  41. The fabulous Kimberly allegedly said:

    You know, if you ever get tired of those blocks, or the dishes for that matter, feel free to send them my way.

    I’m just sayin’.


  42. The fabulous AnyoneCanQuilt allegedly said:

    Pinterest made me miss this post..but then I saw the picture on Pinterest that brought me back here!! Aaaaaahhhh destiny. LOVE this!!! You rock mf! xo

  43. The fabulous Katie allegedly said:

    Oh yes, a little transformation just brings a new look to your work! Love all the colors going on!

  44. The fabulous Heather allegedly said:

    I LOVE IT!!! Thank you so much, Monica. It’s just too awesome to use as a pot holder, so I’m going to find the perfect spot to hang it. You’re the best!

  45. The fabulous mo allegedly said:

    Clever Girl!! I love it! They look sort of like thread spools to me.

  46. The fabulous nanette allegedly said:

    You’re so funny. This is a darling project. I love little projects that I can make in an afternoon and feel so good about afterwards. Your little pans are so colorful. I love them.

  47. The fabulous Mary allegedly said:

    Thanks so much for this awesome tutorial! I had some leftover charm squares and made a potholder. So easy! I’m thinking a layer cake would make a neat throw using this technique.
    You made my day!

  48. The fabulous becky allegedly said:

    I love the colors in those and the pots are nice too. I just noticed the subtitle in your blog header and got a good laugh because thats how I feel about myself most of the time. :)

  49. The fabulous Kristen allegedly said:

    Okay, I may be missing something here since everyone else seems to have had no problem with this, but where is step 3? How do I know how big to cut that corner triangle? Is that an adjustable measurement or a fixed one? HELP!!!


      Ack! Thanks for pointing out I’m missing the number 3. The steps are all there - just miss numbered (I somehow skipped ahead in numbers and neglected poor number 3). Thanks bunches - and the number 3 thanks you too. :O)

  50. The fabulous Madame Parfait allegedly said:

    Thank you for the tutorial, I can’t wait to give this a shot! I really love red and aqua together,too!

  51. The fabulous Karyn allegedly said:

    The colors are sooo cute! Thank you!

  52. The fabulous VickiT allegedly said:

    Thank you so much. This is great.

  53. The fabulous Kristen allegedly said:

    Finally got around to making some of these (using Moda’s Hoopla charm packs and a WOW fabric cut into 5″ squares for a baby quilt) and they are adorable and SO easy. Good thing, since I found out since starting that it’s going to be twins, so I’m going to make twice as many for two! Thanks so much for providing such a great idea for free … this was better than many of the store-bought patterns that still look like charms just sewn together!

  54. The fabulous Kristen allegedly said:

    … and finally blogged about it today with pictures - see linked website. :-)

Farting around with needle & thread and then blogging about it.

Monica Solorio-Snow
Happy Zombie

Pacific Wonderland
Astoria, Oregon

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