Friday, January 25, 2019

Selvage Star Tutorial

I am so excited this morning to share with you my Selvage Star Block Tutorial!!!    I originally had this idea clear back here , and ya, it took 2 Years and a String Along  to finally get this process rolling.   But here it is, and I am having so much fun making these Selvage Star blocks.   And I hope with this little tutorial you will have just as much fun.   So let's get to it!!!


For each Selvage Star Block, you will need to cut 4 Large Foundation Squares, 4 Small Foundation Squares, (and if you are not sure what a Foundation Square is, see this post ) 4 Large Background Squares, and 4 Small Background Squares.    The Large Squares should be 1/2" bigger than the small squares.   So that you can make the size block you want, here is a chart that illustrates the size squares to cut for your desired size block. 

For a 24" Block        Cut 4 Large Squares - 7"                 Cut 4 Small Squares - 6 1/2"

For a 22" Block        Cut 4 Large Squares - 6 1/2"           Cut 4 Small Squares - 6"

For a 20" Block        Cut 4 Large Squares - 6"                 Cut 4 Small Squares - 5 1/2"

For a 18" Block        Cut 4 Large Squares - 5 1/2"           Cut 4 Small Squares - 5"

For a 16" Block        Cut 4 Large Squares - 5"                 Cut 4 Small Squares - 4 1/2"

For a 14" Block        Cut 4 Large Squares - 4 1/2"           Cut 4 Small Squares - 4"

For a 12" Block        Cut 4 Large Squares - 4"                 Cut 4 Small Squares - 3 1/2"


Now your squares are all cut and you are ready to start playing with Selvages.   For the Selvage Star Block, you will need to add Selvages to the 4 Large Foundation squares and the 4 Small Foundation squares.   And if you need to know how to do that, I created a Sewing with Selvages Tutorial just yesterday to walk you through the process.   Handy that is, almost like I planned for these two tutorials to go together ;)


So now we are going to turn the Large Selvage Square into Half Square Triangle units.   Grab your 4 Large Selvage Squares, and 4 Large Background Squares.   The Small Selvage and Background squares can be set aside for the moment.   

On the wrong side of the 4 Large Background Squares, draw a diagonal line from corner to corner.  Place the Marked Background Square on to the Large Selvage Square with right sides together aligning the raw edges and pin in place.   Take care that the diagonal of the Selvages and the marked diagonal are going the same direction as shown. 

You will be stitching a 1/4" seam on either side of the drawn line as shown.   Chain stitching all 4 sets will save you time and thread.

Simply start with stitching the 1/4" seam along the left hand side of the drawn line on all 4 sets.  Then clip the threads between your sets. 

Now repeat the process for the other side of the drawn line.  You will finish with 4 sets all stitched on both sides of the drawn line.  Again. clip the threads between your sets.

Now move to your cutting mat.  Cut the square sets along the drawn line to make two sets of triangles.  Press the seam allowance towards the Background fabric.  You will have 8 Half Square Triangle Units total.

Now trim all the Half Square Triangle units to the same size as you Small Squares.  Be sure to align the seam allowance and the diagonal line on your square ruler to ensure your HST's are trimmed square.   If you haven't trimmed HST's before, you can see this tutorial for more detailed instructions.

And now you have 8 Half Square Triangle units.   And now you are ready to make the block!!!


Layout your 8 Half Square Triangle units, 4 Small Selvage Square units, and 4 Small Background squares as shown below. Take care to place the Small Selvage Square units so that they make a "diamond" in the direction of the Selvages  :)

Once you have it all laid out, it's time to sew the units into rows.   To do this, place the second unit onto the first unit (shown in row 1) in each row with right sides together.   Chain Stitch a 1/4" seam along the edge of each pair in each row.   Put your sewn pieces back in your layout.  And now you just repeat this for each unit in the row.  Place your third unit in each row onto your second unit (shown in row 2) with right sides together and align and stitch a 1/4" seam along the edge.  Repeat for the last unit in each row. (shown in row 3)   Now all 4 rows should be sewn together.  (shown in row 4)

Press the seams open.  This will help to reduce the bulk of all those Selvages ;)

And now, you just have to sew the Rows together to make the block.   Place the first row onto the second row with right sides together.  Place the fourth row onto the third row with right sides together.  Align and pin the seams in place.   Stitch a 1/4" seam along both pinned edges.

And when stitching that seam, take care that you sew directly across the bottom of the Fabric V in the center seam.  This will ensure that you get a nice crisp point!!

Now just one seam left!!!    Place the top half of the block onto the bottom half of the block with right sides together.    Align and pin the seams in place.   Stitch a 1/4" seam along the pinned edge.

And again, when stitching that seam, take care that you sew directly across the bottom of the Fabric V in the two outer seams ensuring  nice crisp points!!

And all that is left is to press the seams open.   And your done!!!!

You now have a beautiful Selvage Star Block!!!  Isn't it just so fun!!!!   I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and if you make your own Selvage Star Block I would love to see it!!  You can email me a picture at or add it to my flickr group here or post it to social media with  #happyquiltingwithmc ;)  I can't wait to see your Selvage Star Blocks!!!

And just for fun . . . this is what I plan to make with my Selvage Stars :)   It will require 23 Selvage Stars and 4 Half Selvage Stars (just don't sew that last seam :)   so ya, it's going to take a while.  But is is going to be incredible when it is done.  I am making my stars 20" so it will finish at 100" square and be perfect for the king size bed!!  I will be sure to share my progress along the way :)

Thanks so much for popping in today and every day!!! I am so glad I got to share this tutorial with you all and hope I have inspired you to Sew with your Selvages!!! 

Linking up this Block finish to Sarah's and Myra's ;) 
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  1. Thank you for taking the time to do this. I have been waiting patiently since you talked about making a tutorial. Am having some minor surgery on my foot today or I would be in my room pulling salvages from a very large box! Thanks again.

  2. It is going to be fabulous. Thanks so much for the tutorial.

  3. Such a cool way to use up those precious selvages! I've got a small-ish bag of them waiting for the perfect project and now I know how to put them to work! Thanks Melissa!

  4. I have been saving my selvages because I hate to throw them away, plus I know someone will want them! If you are doing a giveaway at any time, I'd be happy to ship my selvages to a winner (in the US, please).

  5. Está hermosísima! Gracias por el tutorial. Una pregunta: Se dificulta el acolchar un edredón que tenga esta técnica? Saludos desde Venezuela!

  6. Very neat! Thanks for the tutorial!

  7. I might have to start saving selvages now that I know how to sew them together. Thank you for the tutorials.

  8. I've always liked the look for selvage projects. Even making one star would be a nice keepsake from a group of projects. Will start saving my selvages.

  9. I very patiently waited for this tutorial and got busy right away working on it. Wish I could add a picture here! It is now a flimsy and am thinking about how I want to quilt it!! Will be sorting my selvages into colors so I can make some 12 inch blocks. Thank you so very much!


Thank you so much for your sweet comments. I just love hearing from you!!
Have a Happy Quilting Day :)