I decided to conduct a test and see if one approach gave me better results than the other because the templates often do give me better results but I have to confess that I've strip pieced for a longer time.
So I cut the 2" strips and then did three tests.
First, I stitched a couple pairs of green and orange strips together, pressed them and cut off rows to be stitched into 4-patches.
Then I stacked up 4 strips (green right side up, orange right side down, green up, orange down) and used template A-5 to cut a couple stacks of squares to stitch into 4-patches.
And finally, I used the template to cut a few rows off of strip sets before I pressed the strip sets.
Here are the three results -- they are all exactly the same size -- 3 1/2" squares. So I can finish the rest whichever way!
Step 2 is finished and Step 3 nearing the halfway mark but there are still placemats (follow that link to the "good idea" page on my website for how I make these placemats using approx. 6" blocks) to finish . . . .
. . . . . and a piece of flannel to transform into a skirt for my 7-year old granddaughter . . . . .
. . . . . . and one more sock to complete. . . . .
. . . . . . before the gang all arrives.
Merry Christmas everyone!