Favorite Quilting Rulers Part II

In my last posting, I told you about my favorite all-purpose quilting rulers. Today, I’ll share the rulers I use when making 1/2-square and 1/4-square triangle units. When constructing these units, I make them a little larger than required and then trim them to the exact size so that they are really accurate.


The Omnigrid 6″ square ruler works well and is widely available at quilt stores but the Tucker Trimmers I and II are much easier to use. When I taught at the Minnesota Quilters’ Guild conference in 2010, I discovered these rulers. Jeff and Deb Tucker had a booth at the show and as soon as I saw Jeff give the demo, I was sold. At their website, Studio 180 Design, you can see video demos and order these rulers if your local quilt store doesn’t carry them.


The Tucker Trimmer I ruler (on the right) is used for trimming to whole inch and half inch sizes. I have positioned it to trim my 1/2-square triangle unit to 3″ (whole black dot is on top right). If I turned it 180 degrees the half black dot would be at the top right and I could easily trim the unit to 2-1/2″. Trimmer Tucker II is for 1/4″ and 3/4″ sizes and works in the same way (with a 1/4 dot and a 3/4 dot to indicate the appropriate position). Like the Omnigrid 6″ square, these rulers have a diagonal line running from top right to bottom left, but they also have diagonal lines going the other way. When trimming a 1/4-square triangle units (as on the left) it is really easy to line up the center of the unit where these diagonal lines on the ruler intersect. Yes, it’s two rulers instead of one, but the ease with which you can read the measurements and use them accurately makes it well worth the investment.

Favorite Quilting Rulers Part I

I am a huge fan of Omnigrid rulers. I like the clarity and ease with which I can read the measurements. If I could only have one ruler for all my quilting, I would choose the 6″ x 24″ and this is the one I advise new quilters to purchase. My second favorite is the 15″ square which I find extremely useful for squaring up my Kaleidoscope and Op-Art Kaleidoscope blocks.Rulers1

Another I like is the 6″ x 12″ ruler. This is especially good for cutting strip sets into segments which I do frequently when making my Bargello block quilts. When you are making these repeated counter-cuts, it is easier to use this smaller ruler rather than the long 6″ x 24″. You can line up the horizontal lines on the ruler with the seam lines on the strip-sets which helps to keep everything square and even.


On my quilting travels, I have come across a variety of rulers, some of which I have great difficulty using. Part of this is simply due to habit, but for me it is hard work using rulers that have variable divisions in the measurements marked on the ruler. I also have an aversion to rulers that have 1/2″ added on e.g. the 6-1/2″ x 24″. With my 6″ x 24″ I can either long side for measuring my cuts. For the 6-1/2″ version I get confused by the extra 1/2″ and I find it easy to make a mistake if the ruler is turned round the wrong way. I also have this problem with the 9-1/2″ and 12-1/2″ squares. However these work well for cutting blocks for applique when you want 9″ or 12″ finished size.

In my next blog, Part II, I’ll discuss the rulers I use when making 1/2-square triangles and 1/4-square triangles.