About a month ago, I was at a Berry Basket Quilters guild workshop learning to make bargello placemats when another quilter pulled out her Stripology ruler (affiliate link). I had heard of these rulers, but had never seen or tried one. Inaccurate cutting is one of my biggest frustrations, so I went ahead and bought one. Last night, I tried it for the first time.
It has a 20″ x 14″ grid marked every quarter inch along the width (every half inch from top to bottom) on the surface, along with 45 and 60 degree angles. A slit on every half inch has a teardrop shape at either end to get your rotary cutter in and out, but the rest of the slit is narrow enough to “hug” your cutting blade and keep it straight. Every 1 1/2″ is marked with a star, and every 2 1/2″ with a square.
You fold your fabric twice: fold in half, selvages together, then fold in half again so the selvages meet the fold you just made.
Put the selvage side toward the top of your cutting mat and place the ruler on the fabric. Align the bottom fold with a line on the ruler, making sure the left edge of the fabric is to the left of the “0” inch marking. Then you insert your rotary cutter blade into the slot, and cut. Easy peasy.
If you’re cutting strips to widths other than 1 1/2″ or 2 1/2″, you might want to mark the locations of the cuts you want to make with a little painters’ tape or something along those lines.
The instructions are clearly written and include how to cut fat quarters and fat eighths into strips, cutting in 1/4″ increments, subcutting your strips, cutting pieced strip units, and cutting diamonds.
From what I’ve seen, this tool would be most useful for a frequent quilter. It’s a little expensive for an occasional quilter, although if those occasional quilts are bargellos, I think this would be a great ruler to use (with a little practice-definitely try it out on plain yardage first).
Pros: Fast and accurate, versatile.
Cons: Expensive for a ruler, feels a little flimsy (I would be wary of carting it around to workshops).
Recommended? Yes! It would be a terrific gift for a quilter in your life.
Have you used the Stripology ruler? What do you like/dislike about it?
What other specialty rulers do you use?