Kevin has a great tutorial of how to do clue 1 on his blog HERE. I'm an Accuquilt girl. I cut as many things I can with my Accuquilt dies -- I'm lazy like that. But it also lets me quickly use the smallest of scraps.
Here's how I did clue 1:
1. I found a great helper to sort the blues in brights (mediums), lights, and darks. Owen was thrilled to get to cut today!
2. Owen is using the 3.5" (3" finished) Accuquilt square die, 55006.
and the 2" (1.5 finished) HST 55319.
3. The first row shows the 3.5" square next to the 2" HST (unfinished sizes.)
4. The second row shows how I line up the HST on the square. There is no trimming, no marking of lines. Just line up the straight edges on the corner and sew with your 1/4" seam.
5. The bottom unit shows the (half finished) unit after it has been pressed. I press from the top so that I don't have any funky folds on there. See how it lines up nicely? I don't trim. It's just a stitch and flip. Yes, my quilts are a little heavier than quilts that have been trimmed. But is that really a bad thing. I actually use this method on almost all of the Bonnie Hunter mystery quilts. I wait to see what the sewing clue is before I cut.
Now I have to get Owen to cut the light blues so that I can stitch them to the opposite corners.