Ombre HST quilt 

Back in January, Darla Clinton (owner of the former Clinton Modern Creative fabric shop) contacted me about putting together a blogger’s bundle. I didn’t need to hear any more details before I said “Yes! I’m in!” And that’s what started this little ombre HST quilt got started!

The plan was for me to “shop” Darla’s store and pull together a small bundle of fabric that appealed to me. I would sew a quilt with it, and then post about it on my blog. Darla would sell the fabric as a custom bundle on her website so other people could make pretty things (maybe another ombre HST quilt?) with it. Easy peasy – we all win!

Welp, things didn’t quite go as planned. I did indeed shop her store and had no problem finding some beautiful fabric. Darla sent it to me immediately and I sewed it into a quilt, but then I started a longarm business and kind of forgot about it for a few months. In the meantime, Darla sold her online fabric store and I was no longer sure how to proceed. Thankfully, she contacted me recently to remind me of this long-forgotten-but-still-fabulous quilt! Thank you Darla!

FYI, if you want to read more about Darla’s current adventures, you can check out her website!

Fabric pull

Have you ever worked with Alison Glass’ Kaleidoscope fabric? I would recommend you check it out if you haven’t already! It’s a cross-weave which means that the strands of the weft are a different colour than the warp. When the two are woven into one fabric, it lends such an interesting depth of colour. And because it’s Alison Glass, the colours are really saturated!

Not only does this fabric lend a visual punch to any project, the drape is so lovely and soft. Some cross weave fabric is a bit stiff, but not this stuff. This is what quilty dreams are made of! Seriously – go check it out!

I had previously worked with this line of fabric when I made my North Star Quilt, and knew that I wanted to make a whole quilt out of it. It was was hard to choose, but I narrowed my bundle down to a variety of blues, purples, and and pinks, with a black for the background fabric.

Quilt design

Wanting the fabric to shine, I chose a really simple quilt design. I decided to make the entire quilt from half-square triangles (HSTs) and arrange them in an ombre colour order. Each HST was made up of the background fabric paired with one of the colours. Individually, they look great, but put together in an ombre HST quilt top, they pack a visual WALLOP!

The quilt is made of a 13 x 13 HST blocks, and measures 39″ x 39″. That’s 169 blocks for the quilt top!

HST Method

I’m a sucker for precision and have worked hard to find a HST method that gives me nice sharp points. For me, the best results come when I use the eight-at-a-time method. It’s quick and efficient (which I also like), and you’ve got a PILE of HSTs in no time.

In order to get exact-sized HST units, I like to make slightly oversized HSTs and then trim them to the correct size using a Bloc Loc ruler. This has always produced great results for me, but there is the one small downside. As the seams are all pressed to one side, it creates bulk where the blocks meet.

Alternate HST method

In the future, I’d love to try the Clearly Perfect Slotted Trimmer. You can press your seams open with this tool, and you only have to trim two sides of your HST units (as opposed to trimming all four sides with the Bloc Loc). My only concern would be that I might warp the blocks when pressing them? Question mark? Is that something I should even be worrying about? I don’t know!

Please let me know if you’ve ever used this tool – I want to hear all about it!


Using my fancy new longarm machine, I machine quilted this ombre HST quilt with the Oil & Water pantograph. It’s such a fluid, curvy pattern that it complements all the points on the quilt top well. I don’t know about you, but I can definitely tell where this pattern got its name!

Finishing the quilt

I chose another Alison Glass print (Daydream in Mystery from the Road Trip line) for the quilt backing, and I think it’s so cute! So dainty and still so saturated with colour. Alison knows what’s up when it comes to colours.

For the binding, I used more of the Kaleidoscope in charcoal and used my usual machine binding technique. If you’d like to see more about that method, you can check out the “Glue Basting” and “Machine binding” highlighted stories in my Instagram account.

Now what?

Darla recently asked me what my plan was for the quilt…. I told her I didn’t have one! We certainly have enough quilts around here, and it didn’t feel right to sell a quilt where the fabric had been donated.

That’s why I was super happy when Darla suggested donating it to the Saskatchewan Ronald McDonald House. In case you’re not familiar, this is an amazing organization that provides housing to families of children who are travelling to Saskatoon for medical care. This facility alone requires 400 quilts a year for donations to families. What a great way to give purpose to a quilt!

I wanted to check if my “local” (Winnipeg) Ronald McDonald House had a need for quilts, but they seem to be doing well in that department and have no need at this point.

So off to Saskatoon this little quilt shall go! What a heart-warming feeling to know that it will give comfort to a little one who needs a bit more love and support.

How about you? Have you ever donated a quilt before? If so, what is your favourite organization to support? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!

What have I learned?

That I should follow through with a project sooner rather than later! Also, it’s nice to know that something really good will come out of this ombre HST quilt project, despite sitting in limbo for so long.

Now to go make more quilts!

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  1. Great story! I want to find a good place to donate to here in the States. Like you, there are only so many quilts I “need.”

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