Flying Geese Tutorial – Triangulations

My second rant for the day (and what I was going to add to the first one but it got too long) . . if you’re doing something and you’re not happy with what you’re doing . . fix it!  If you’re making flying geese and they’re never turning out right, find a new way to make them!  If you’re making bread and it’s always a flop, try a new recipe!  If your quilt borders ripple and it doesn’t bother you, don’t worry about it.  If you want to change it, figure it out and change it!  How hard is it?  Not hard at all!

Do you remember this blog post where I shared a youtube video?  It’s worth watching again.  I’ve always believed I can do anything others can do . . if I set my mind to it.  When I got my first quilting machine, I never took lessons . . still haven’t . . but I was determined that if someone else could make beautiful feathers, I could do it too.  I know folks who have never had a formal lesson and they’re wizards on the longarm.  I know folks who have taken every lesson they could and they still say they can’t quilt and won’t try it.  I’m not saying lessons aren’t good . . I’m saying you can do anything you set your mind to do.  But it takes effort and determination and therein I think is where some run into a roadblock.

With the Rolling Along pattern, I got quite a bit of moaning and groaning about the flying geese.  The February QOV has lots of flying geese.  Are you going to say “I love the pattern but I can’t make decent flying geese!” or, are you going to get out some scraps and learn to make perfect flying geese?  It’s your choice!

The reason my instructions say to make flying geese, half square triangles, and quarter square triangles however you like is because there are so many ways to make them.  I’ve tried various rulers, no waste methods  . . whatever is out there, I’ve probably tried it.  My favorite method is to use Brenda Henning’s Triangulation™ CD.  You print off any size half square triangle, quarter square triangle or flying geese patterns that you need.

Here’s a quick picture tutorial of how I make flying geese using this method.

1.  Print out the sheet for the appropriate size needed.  I use plain inexpensive printer paper from Staples or Wal-Mart, wherever we get it on sale.

2.  Cut them apart.  At the top of each sheet, it tells you what sizes to cut for that particular size flying geese.  I cut mine just a bit larger . . maybe 1/8th inch larger, so I don’t have to fiddle with getting everything lined up perfectly.

Let’s call the larger triangle (pink on the legend) the geese and let’s call the smaller triangles the sky.  I’ve heard these components called different things but today they’re going to be the geese and the sky.  Lay the goose fabric wrong side up and place a triangle over it.  Hopefully you can see it through your paper.  If not, hold it up to the light and position the fabric behind the paper, wrong side touching the paper.

3.  Pin it if you’d like.  Turn it over so that the right side of the fabric is facing up.  Place one of the sky triangles over the goose fabric, properly positioned.

4.  Once the sky fabric is positioned correctly, turn it all over and sew along the line.

5.  Flip the the sky fabric out and press.  Add the second sky triangle.

6.  Once in position, turn it over and sew along the line.  Flip and press.

7.  Trim from the back where the cutting lines are shown.

8.  You’ll end up with a perfect flying goose!

If you’re thinking that you don’t like dealing with the paper removal, simply hold the piece with your fingernail right on the sewn light, grab one of the paper triangles (in this case, #3 first), snap and it comes right of in one piece.  Do the same thing with the other sky triangle and the goose section will slide right off.

Of all the methods I’ve tried, this is my favorite for making flying geese, half square triangles and quarter square triangles.  If you’re happy with your method, don’t change a thing.  If you’re not happy with your method, try some other methods til you find a method you’re happy with.