Harlequin Diamonds

Last time I showed you some inspirations for a new quilt. The first spur for my interest came from a blog post that showed a lovely quilt from diamonds. Unlike what we often see, the diamonds did not radiate from a central point to create a star. Instead they ran in interlocking lines from top to bottom.

I asked the blogger if she had strip-pieced it, as is often recommended for Lone Star patterns. She said no, she had cut each of the diamonds individually. I wondered if strip-piecing would even work. When I made the diamonds for my UFO project, I strip-pieced. (That means, I cut long strips from each of the fabrics and sewed the strips together in sets of three. After pressing well, I cross-cut the 3-strip piece at a 60° angle. Once I had three units, I sewed them together to get an angled 9-patch.) Here are those diamonds arrayed as a star. The star uses six 9-patch units.


Here they are again, arrayed in a top-to-bottom line. (Use your imagination to fill in the upper corners.) It works in theory, though of course the color/value arrangement is poor.


I talked to Jim about the size of a diamond. If I use a symmetrical diamond from a strip that finishes at 5″, how big is the diamond from point to point? He drew the picture and did the math for me. In the picture below, h is the height, or finished width of the strip. d1 is the distance from point to point, across the narrow direction, and d2 is the distance across the long direction.


If I use 5″ finish strips, the long dimension through the diamond is 10″ from point to point, and the short dimension is 5/.866 = 5.77″, or about 5.75″.

I was able to use these dimensions to draw an example in EQ7. I used blocks that finish at 30″ tall and 17.25″ wide. It gives me a little more flexibility for design. For example, I can use a 9-patch block in that space with 10″ x 5.75″ patches. Or I can use a 4-patch, with patches measuring 15″ x 8.625″, using 7.5″ strips for the strip-piecing.

Harlequin Diamonds

This arrangement of blocks on point, with 5 across and 3 down, will create a quilt that is about 86″ wide by 90″ long.

I’ve pulled about everything from stash that will work for this and started cutting. Next time I’ll talk about the start of construction.


8 thoughts on “Harlequin Diamonds

  1. katechiconi

    I love this arrangement. Diamonds need such careful handling that they can occasionally look a bit stilted, but this is a joyful arrangement, and the addition of the larger elements really adds visual interest.


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