Bet you can’t make just one! Potato Chip Star blocks – watch the video 📹

You’ve probably heard of Ohio Star, Amish Star, Sawtooth Star, Kansas Star, and Missouri Star blocks. But have you ever heard of Potato Chip Star blocks? We hadn’t either—until Paula Barnes and Mary Ellen Robison of Red Crinoline Quilts introduced us to them!

Potato Chip Stars quilt
Potato Chip Stars from
Step Back in Time

Paula calls the 4″ block used in this quilt her “potato-chip block” because they’re like potato chips—you can’t stop sewing after just one!

In their latest book, Step Back in Time, Paula and Mary Ellen share an all-new, jaw-dropping collection of patterns for reproduction-fabric fans, and they’ve paired each quilt with a fascinating true story from the 1800s. Running with the potato-chip theme, the design duo decided to dig deep into history to find out one thing: how was the potato chip invented, anyway? Here’s an excerpt about that from the book.


One night during the 1850s, a dinner guest returned his French fries to the kitchen at a restaurant in upstate New York because he felt they were too thick. Chef George Crum (right) decided to annoy the customer by serving him a much thinner fry that he overcooked and salted. To his surprise, the guest was ecstatic over the browned, paper-thin potatoes, and the potato chip was born.

In 1860, George opened his own restaurant, called Crum’s, in Malta, New York. It’s said he served a basket of potato chips at every table. In 1932, Herman Lay founded Lay’s, and his potato chips became the first successfully marketed national brand.


You learn something new every day!

The Potato Chip quilt has become quite popular since the release of Step Back in Time, and you can see why—it’s spectacular:

Potato Chip Stars quilt

When we were at Quilt Market in May, we caught up with Paula and Mary Ellen and they showed us how they make their Potato Chip Star blocks—the Star Singles foundation papers they use turn out perfect little half-square triangles, eight at a time! Watch the video:


Reading this post in email? Click here to view the video.

HSTs don’t get much easier than that!

Check your local quilt shop for Star Singles foundation papers or order the papers directly from Paula and Mary Ellen at their website, Red Crinoline Quilts.

Want to see more quilts from Step Back in Time that use Star Singles? We thought you might!

Blue Ridge Mountains quilt
Blue Ridge Mountains

Wild Rose quilt
Wild Rose

The Quilting Bee quilt
The Quilting Bee

See nine more quilts from Step Back in Time >>>

Step Back in TimeHave you tried Star Singles Papers to make quilt blocks?

  • Yes—I never make half-square triangles without them!
  • Yes, I use them when I’m making small units.
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!

Tell us in the comments!


100 Comments (leave a comment)

  • I have not heard of these papers but they are very like the kind I use which you print out on your printer from a software called Triangulations this has been around for a long time – I don’t know if it is even for sale anymore – I bought the CD years ago

    Karen on June 14, 2019
  • No I have never even heard of them, sounds intriguing

    —Betsy on June 14, 2019
  • Have not heard of this way to make 1/2 sq. triangles but think I need to give them a try. I really, really like making star blocks. I need a copy of this book so I can make the Potato Chip Quilt. I love, love, potato chips and star blocks!!

    —Judy Casteel on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!

    —Sabrina Van Ginkel on June 14, 2019
  • I have never used Star Singles Papers. It really looks like I should give these a try for that extra perfection in making half-square triangles. Thanks for this help!

    —Ann West on June 14, 2019
  • Yes, I use these papers consistently for small prints. First used them from a kit I purchased. They are small enough to handle and accurate. Love them.

    —Linda Pickenpaugh on June 14, 2019
  • I have used the papers but I can do fine without them. If I were doing a trade, I would insist everyone use them because they are consistent. The quilts in that book are beautiful, I especially like that Star quilt. 🙂

    —Kay on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but will definitely be looking for some! The video makes it look so easy to make 8 at a time!!

    —Laurie Hackett on June 14, 2019
  • Wow, hadn’t seen the Star Singles. Love the design. I’ll be ordering the papers today!

    —Joyce on June 14, 2019
  • I almost never make half square triangles without them. Maybe if I’m making one or two but if I’m making a bunch it’s definitely triangle paper. I make odd looking triangles if I don’t use them they always turn out wonky no matter how hard I try.

    —Barb Walsh on June 14, 2019
  • No, but I’m willing to try.

    —Judy Thompson on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I would love to give them a try !

    —Lois on June 14, 2019
  • I love paper piecing but have never heard of these. Love the concept! Wii have to try them out!

    —Carolyn Block on June 14, 2019
  • Yes. I use them when making small units. I’ve also sewn several of their block of the month quilts that used the paper. They are on my list of favorite designers!

    —Tonya Hartnell on June 14, 2019
  • I also have the Triangulations CD, and have triangle papers of a different brand, as well as a few rulers that help with HST units. My favorite is the Easy Angle ruler because it is accurate, and doesn’t involve papers which dull my needle and then need to be removed. But, I do understand the beauty of the papers-no need to square up!

    —Tamara Hutchinson on June 14, 2019
  • What an ingenious way of making half square triangles. I am going to have to give it a try.

    Kristie on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!

    —Nancy on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet but I will be giving them a try.

    —Brenda on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!

    —Linda Lee Ahn on June 14, 2019
  • No I have never tried them. They sound interesting. Added to my must haves list.

    —Lisa on June 14, 2019
  • I have never heard of Star Singles Papers. They look like a wonderful way to make perfect half square triangles which I struggle with sometimes. Absolutely love The Quilting Bee!!

    —Kay on June 14, 2019
  • I have not used that brand of triangle papers but have used others. The book looks very interesting and has some quilts I would like to try.

    —Peggy on June 14, 2019
  • No, I haven’t used those papers to make half square triangles, but I’d like to.

    —Stephanie Woodward on June 14, 2019
  • I have not yet used the triangle papers, but would like to. My other method of hst’s is make them oversized and then sliver trim them (I have a tendency to iron them open too aggressively). I need to try something different! 😉🧵

    —Teri N on June 14, 2019
  • I’ve not used them, but will. For years I have used a different brand of triangle paper, but I have a difficult time finding them, so they may be out of print. I will definitely be getting some. I love the accuracy and not having to square them up. Love the name of the block.

    —Dorothy Carter on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but after viewing that video, I can’t Wait to try them.

    —M Sue Smith on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think it’s a great idea. Will definitely give it a try.

    —Anne on June 14, 2019
  • I have not yet used the papers but I will definitely give them a try!

    —Sheena on June 14, 2019
  • No, this is the first time I’ve seen them. Very cool!

    —Linda B. on June 14, 2019
  • Have only used papers for 1/2 square triangles once before, but I really like these star papers. I’ll be giving them a try.

    —Vickie Keith on June 14, 2019
  • NO not yet! I would love to try them.

    —Teresa on June 14, 2019
  • No, I have not tried them yet.

    —Sharon on June 14, 2019
  • Never did HST with these papers. Looks interesting.

    —Betsy P on June 14, 2019
  • I have the triangulations Cd and I have triangles on a roll as well as other types of rulers, and yes, sometimes I make them slightly over sized and trim down.

    I would love to try the papers for these blocks.

    —Judi R on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try! Looks amazing!

    —Barb on June 14, 2019
  • No I’ve have never used them but I would like to give them a try.
    Dolores

    —Dolores Roberts on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!

    —Donna W on June 14, 2019
  • Which size of the Star Singles papers are used in the video? I guess I missed that.

    They are papers for the 1 1/2″ half-square triangles, Judi – thanks for your question! –Jenny

    —Judi R on June 14, 2019
  • I haven’t tried them yet, but it looks like a great plan!

    —Carol Koehn on June 14, 2019
  • I have used them for years and like the outcome.

    —Rose Landon on June 14, 2019
  • I have not tried this but looks like fun.

    —Christi on June 14, 2019
  • I’ve never heard of them till now,but I’m going to try them! Thanks for the vidieo.

    —Sharon on June 14, 2019
  • I grab the paper when things get small. Helps keeps them precise.

    —Patricia Hersl on June 14, 2019
  • Wow! What a great way to make HST. I’ve never used the paper but am going to try it now.

    —Donna K on June 14, 2019
  • I’ve never tried them.

    —Geri on June 14, 2019
  • No, I haven’t heard of these papers either. I LOVE their book!!!

    —karen on June 14, 2019
  • I occasionally use this method to make HST. They make very precise block components.

    —Carol Garner on June 14, 2019
  • I have never used papers to piece except for specific paper-piecing if that makes sense. I.E, never used triangle papers, etc.

    —LisaT on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try.

    —Jill Hicks on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet but I certainly would love to try it. Potato chip star quilt looks like fun.

    —Judith Carlon on June 14, 2019
  • I haven’t tried them. I’ve only learned the very basics of quilting so far, and FPP is kinda scary to me. One day, I’m hoping I can say I’m proficient at it!

    —Teri D. Gailey on June 14, 2019
  • No, I haven’t tried them but would certainly give them a try for better accuracy!

    —Kathie Curley on June 14, 2019
  • I have not used that particular product, but have tried other paper ways to make HSTs. I usually just do them without any papers, a little lager and trim down to size. I would certainly give them a try. I’ll try most anything once.

    —Sherry Loncar on June 14, 2019
  • Not only have I never used them, until now I hadn’t heard of them! Will be on the lookout for them when I next visit my LQS.

    —SandyMay on June 14, 2019
  • I never have, sure I would love working with them and hope to in the near future!

    Terry Solt on June 14, 2019
  • Never tried paper pieced method. Usually make them in pairs, fours or eights. Love HSTs!

    —gail on June 14, 2019
  • OMG!!!!! I have never seen this but I can tell it is going to be a potato chip quilt as I’ll be doing one in every possible color, motif an scrap I have!!!!!! Love this!

    —Marion Lisko on June 14, 2019
  • No, but I definitely would.

    —Fay on June 14, 2019
  • I’ve never heard of the potato chip stars, but I would love to try them with the paper piecing technique. Jadahlgr at yahoo dot com

    —Cindy Dahlgren on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet but I think I need to try them.

    —Clare on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but looks very interesting. Beautiful quilts. Love to have the book!

    —Linda Smith on June 14, 2019
  • I have not make half square triangles with paper but am very eager to try. The potato chip star looks interesting

    —Sue on June 14, 2019
  • I have not heard of these but foundation piecing give the most accurate results with half square triangles. Would love to try them.

    —Donna Olson on June 14, 2019
  • Have not use these papers yet. What a cute name for the blocks.

    —Peggy on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet but definitely need to give this a try.

    —Lenny Truitt on June 14, 2019
  • I’ve not tried those yet but I am going to! Gorgeous stars!!

    —Jacque on June 14, 2019
  • I haven’t used them yet, but I do have this wonderful book!

    —Kyra Franz on June 14, 2019
  • I’ve never tried tried Star Singles Papers. Probably should give them a try.

    —stitching mom on June 14, 2019
  • I haven’t tried these papers but I will definitely be on the look out for some.b

    —Brenda C on June 14, 2019
  • I would like to try this new way of making stars!

    —Catherine Stiele on June 14, 2019
  • I haven’t heard of these foundation papers.

    —Cheri Bergeron on June 14, 2019
  • Have not used the papers yet but would love to try them out .

    Sheila on June 14, 2019
  • Never heard of these papers. Might need to find some and give them a try!

    —Sue H on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try.

    —Joan Moore on June 14, 2019
  • Haven’t used the papers, but I ‘ll have to give them a try. Love the quilts in the book!

    —Patricia Ludwiczak on June 14, 2019
  • Not yet, but I’m willing to try.

    —Virginia in AK on June 14, 2019
  • I’ve actually never heard of them, but I do like paper piecing!

    —Carol Eberhardt on June 14, 2019
  • I have never heard of this product,but would love to try them.The quilts in the book are beautiful, but look really hard ,but the papers would make them alot easier!

    —PAK on June 14, 2019
  • I have not heard of these papers but I am definitely going to look into buying them for my next project that may very well come from Step Back in Time!! I am intrigued by all the vintage reproduction quilts!!

    —Kathy Kranenburg on June 15, 2019
  • Love the potato chip quilts! I have made several of Paula’s quilt patterns and love using the star papers.

    —Diane H on June 15, 2019
  • I hadn’t even heard of this method yet and I can’t wait to try.

    —Sharon Lowy on June 15, 2019
  • I have not used the papers, but I have used this technique on larger squares.

    —Karen A on June 15, 2019
  • I have used papers to cut HST, especially if there are a lot to cut. I love potato chips and love these stars!!!

    —Patty F. on June 15, 2019
  • I have never done paper piecing but I would love to do the Potato chip quilt. I love stars and potato chips. LOL

    —Bonita Harms on June 15, 2019
  • I use them for tiny accurate half square triangles

    —Mary Lou on June 15, 2019
  • YES! Love them. Recently completed a quilt that had 640 – 1.5” HST’s. Would not have made it without the Star Single papers. Have a box of 2” HST’s from a block exchange done with the papers that are waiting for a scrappy project or 2 or 3.

    —Doris T on June 15, 2019
  • I would like to try the HST papers. Looks so easy.

    —Martha Followill on June 15, 2019
  • Have not yet tried the HST paper piecing, but definitely will. Love the Potato Chip quilt and the Quilting Bee patterns and fabric choices. This is a great book. Thanks for introducing it.

    —Darliss Peabody on June 15, 2019
  • I haven’t used this method but I am willing to learn new methods!

    —Gloria on June 15, 2019
  • I’ve never made hst or even heard of these papers. As a beginner quilter I’ve only made one quilt so far. I love the potato chip quilt and reproduction fabric, but I’m not sure I’m quite ready for that lol.

    —Carla on June 15, 2019
  • I have never heard of them. I am currently sewing around 2000 HST’s that my friend sent to me. Around 3/4’s of the way through my stitching.

    —Emma Whittington on June 15, 2019
  • I never done paper piecing, seems too complicated to me.

    —Zuzana on June 15, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!

    —Renee G on June 16, 2019
  • I’ve never tried it but might give it a try in the future

    —A. Bouwman on June 17, 2019
  • I’ve never tried Star Singles Papers …I make all mine the old fashion way even for 3 and 4 inch stars…..I am keen to give it a try though. Love these ladies work. I probably have more of their patterns that I will ever make but they’re awesome to look at………….

    —Barb Dwyer on June 17, 2019
  • I haven’t tried these, but for making such teeny hst’s I’d be willing to give them a try, especially if I were making a bunch of them.

    —Beth T. on June 17, 2019
  • I never use this papers, I will try them

    —Rommy on June 18, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!!!
    Yes, I would like to learn something new!!

    —Cindy Landis on June 18, 2019
  • Not yet, but I think I need to give them a try!

    —donna Kay on June 18, 2019
  • When she used the 2 half sq. triangles to make a flying geese unit, the point was at the very top, without a 1/4″ seam. How does that work when sewing the blocks together?

    —Dee on July 19, 2019

Leave a comment

*Indicates required field