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Forum > Quilters' Corner > Question about rulers ( Moderated by Sharon1952)

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Question about rulers
Elaray
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Elaray
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Date: 3/26/12 12:37 PM

My question is about using the Fons & Porter Half and Quarter ruler to cut half-square triangles. My block instructions say to cut 3.5 inch squares in half to make half square triangles. Will I get the same result by using a 3.5 inch strip and the Half & Quarter Ruler? I've watched the instructional video on the F&P web site and they don't quite answer my question. (Obviously, I'm a quilting newbie )
-- Edited on 3/26/12 12:56 PM --

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Sharon1952
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Sharon1952  Friend of PR
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In reply to Elaray <<


Date: 3/26/12 4:45 PM

If I am understanding you correctly you just need to cut your 3 1/2" strips into 3 1/2" squares. Sew them as directed and then cut them. You can use any ruler to cut them once they are sewn.

Don't know if that helps or if I muddled you more!

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Sewing: A creative mess is better than tidy idleness. ~Author Unknown

Learn To Sew
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Learn To Sew  Friend of PR
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In reply to Elaray <<


Date: 3/26/12 6:34 PM

After having made something like it in class, I would make the 3.5 inch squares and then follow the instruction for triangles. I would not try the strips. I also am new to quilting, so I could be wrong.

Why so small a square to start with? I would think it should be a bit larger than that. Say at least 4 inches and then you have room to maneuver and trim away after sewing. If you start with a 3 1/2 inch square, that is pretty small to work with. What size will the triangle be when it is done? Must be really small.

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I really enjoy quilting. I love to play with fabrics, colors and pictures. I recently discovered how much fun applique can be. As I love making pictures, landscape quilting can be challenging, but seeing the picture come to life is so rewarding.
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Franksdottir

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In reply to Learn To Sew <<


Date: 3/26/12 7:47 PM

As a rule of thumb, when you measure for rotary cutting of triangles, you take the finished size you want, and add 7/8 of an inch for half-square triangles, and 1.5 inches for quarter-square triangles.

So, if you want a pair of triangles which measure 2 inches along the sides of the triangle (not the hypotenuse), you cut a square which is 2 7/8 inches square, and cut from one corner to the other.

To make quarter-square triangles which would measure 2", you would cut a square which was 3.5" square, and then cut an X from corner to corner and then the opposite corners.

Doing it this way leaves a lot of bias, so you have to take that into account. Also, triangles cut this way would be chain pieced to be most efficient.

There are other ways to cut triangles. I like the "Triangles on a Roll," some people like "Thangles," and other people use techniques where you draw lines on squares and sew them along sewing lines and then cut. I think that is a way to get accurate pieced squares, but to my mind it is awfully fiddly, and I would rather do it the old-fashioned way (if 1979 is old enough to be old-fashioned).

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Elaray
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Elaray
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Date: 3/27/12 6:20 AM

Sorry, I wasn't clear in my question. I was considering buying the F&P ruler and I wanted to know if it would suit my needs. The pattern I'm following recommends a ruler by Creative Grids and I can't figure that thing out to save my life!!! I thought the F&P Ruler would be easier. The F&P ruler eliminates the need for cutting squares because the triangles are cut from strips instead. (Hope that makes sense)

I bought it anyway and the triangles cut from 3 1/2 strips are a little bigger than the triangles cut from 3 1/2 squares. I could trim them down after I sew them into the block.

Thanks for the responses!
-- Edited on 3/27/12 6:28 AM --

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Kayabunga
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Date: 3/27/12 8:10 AM

Elaray ... while specialty rulers can be great, they can also cause confusion to new quilters. You will really do yourself a favor if you learn the basic "quilt math" that Franksdottir mentioned to make half square triangles ... find your finished size and add 7/8", cut the square in half on the diagonal and stitch diagonal seam together. If you are worried about sewing the bias edge, spray starch your fabrics so they're really stiff before cutting, you will be amazed how much that will stabilize your bias edges while you're working on your quilt. The specialty ruler from F & P (don't know which one from Creative Grids was frustrating you) looks to have been designed to eliminate the math but if you are not familiar with the math to begin with, it'll just confuse you more. To answer your question ... it depends if your block pattern is written specifically for the use of a "specialty ruler" or just plain old regular ruler. In the future, when you find yourself lost, figure out the finished size you need and then figure out what size to cut by working backwards as Franksdottir suggested, this will always help you get back on track.

Kayabunga
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Date: 3/27/12 8:22 AM

Just had another thought ... get yourself a copy of "The Quilter's Pocket Reference" by Peggy Scholley, it will REALLY simplify quilt math and more. It's a great little reference.

Elaray
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Elaray
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In reply to Kayabunga <<


Date: 3/27/12 8:46 AM

Quote: Kayabunga
Elaray ... while specialty rulers can be great, they can also cause confusion to new quilters. ....... The specialty ruler from F & P (don't know which one from Creative Grids was frustrating you) looks to have been designed to eliminate the math but if you are not familiar with the math to begin with, it'll just confuse you more.

You are so right Kayabunga! I am thoroughly confused!

I'm going to play around with some scraps, but if I don't have a Eureka! moment and have it quickly, I'm going to do it the old fashioned way.

Thanks!


-- Edited on 3/27/12 8:46 AM --
-- Edited on 3/27/12 8:47 AM --

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I sew, therefore I am.

Visit my blog at http://anothercreation.blogspot.com

PattiAnnJ
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In reply to Elaray <<


Date: 3/27/12 8:57 AM

There are a lot of gimmicks that claim success. Don't waste your money on them and stick with F & P.

The key to a getting the correct size triangle is to start with a block that is 5/8" larger than the cut size. In your case a 3 7/8" strip will result in a 3 1/2" triangle.

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TessKwiltz
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TessKwiltz  Friend of PR
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In reply to PattiAnnJ <<
thumbsup 1 member likes this.


Date: 3/27/12 10:57 AM

Quote: PattiAnnJ
There are a lot of gimmicks that claim success. Don't waste your money on them and stick with F & P.

Personally I despise F&P...

But this is purely personal preference and an admittedly emotional response based on a single incident. I would not discourage anyone else from using their products or techniques if they are happy with them.

I adore Eleanor Burns' techniques, but I know some are put off by her sing-songy, kindergarden-teacher voice. To each her own!

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Tess

On threadpainting flowers: "How many colors are in a flower? ... How many do you have?" - Ellen Anne Eddy

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