Make Following Patterns Easier Using Perfect4Pattern Sets with Guidelines Rulers

How to square up your fabric, including the Super Easy Way

Cut accurate strips & squares faster without straining your eyes, hands, arms & shoulders

Sew perfect scant ¼" seam allowances & get pointy points

  • Click on the step by step instructions on each section below.
  • Click here to see how Guidelines Rulers make it so much easier to cut strips and squares.

Tools You Need: Perfect4Pattern Sets with 1, 2 or 3 Guidelines Rulers

All 3 sets include the Prep-Tool & 6-Pack Seam Guides.

This set includes one 6"x12" Guidelines Ruler

This set includes two 6"x12" Guidelines Rulers and a Connector to make a 6"x24", 12" square and small corner square

This set includes three 6"x12" Guidelines Rulers and 2 Connectors to make a 6"x24", 12" square, 3-foot ruler and large corner square to square up the Super Easy Way

Go with the Grain For Perfect Piecing

Fabric is much easier to work with if you pay attention to the grain

Fabric comes on a bolt folded once with the selvedges together. If you unfold it, it will be about
44” - 45” wide.

Try This Yourself.

Hold a piece of fabric right below the selvedge edge.

Stretch right below parallel to the edge:

Move one hand down a little and stretch again:

The First Step in Any Successful Quilt Project is Squaring Up

To square it up, the goal is to cut just inside one raw edge of the fabric,so that the newly cut edge is
parallel with the crosswise grain and at a 90 degree angle to the Lengthwise grain of the fabric.

Folding Fabric 101

Leave it folded once in 2 Layers or fold it twice into 4 Layers: That is the Question.

To trim off the raw edge, the fabric will need to be folded at least once, so it’s about 22” wide, and you can use two Guidelines Rulers connected as a 24” ruler.

Some quilters fold it twice to four layers, so it’s about 11” wide, and they can use just one 12” ruler.

Either Way, the goal is to fold it precisely so that the grain line on all the layers of fabric are perfectly aligned with each other.

Pick the fabric up holding it just by the selvedge edges. If the grain on both layers is aligned, the fabric will drape smoothly.

If the grain is out of alignment, the fabric will twist a little and not hang smoothly. You can adjust the top layer back and forth against the bottom layer until you eliminate any twists in the fabric.Once you get the fabric to hang smoothly, keep the selvedge edges aligned, lay it on your cutting mat and finger press the folded edge.

You can fold the fabric again by aligning the folded edge with the selvedge edges.

Some quilters do this but if you don’t get all four layers aligned accurately, your strips will come out with a slight “V” like the image on the left and will be unusable.

If you’re comfortable folding the fabric twice into four layers,
you can square up using just one Ruler:


Most quilters find it easier to square up accurately with the fabric folded only once. Connect two rulers end-to-end, and you can square up the full width of fabric folded only once to two layers.


End to End, Side by Side or as a Corner Square

You can make a 6"x24" to cut the full width of fabric or connect them side-by-side to cut wider pieces. You can even make a Corner Square to square up but taken apart, they will fit in a small bag or even in the case with your sewing machine.

1) Insert the Tabs on the ends of both lower arms on the Connector into the center of the holes in the ruler.

2) Push on both arms and slide the Connector to the right until you hear a click to lock it onto the first Ruler.

3) Insert the Tabs on the upper arms into the center of the holes in the 2nd ruler. Hold the Connector in place on the 1st ruler and slide the 2nd ruler to the left up against the Lip Edge.

How to Take the Rulers Apart

Squeeze the extensions on the end of the Connector together and slide the top ruler to the right until the tabs are back in the center of the holes.

Then you can lower the ruler and pull it away. Squeeze the extensions again to take the Connector off the other ruler.

If you're comfortable folding your fabric twice to four layers,
you can square up the Super Easy Way, using just
two Guidelines Rulers connected as a corner square.

1) Connect two 6”x12” Guidelines Rulers to make a corner square.

2) Line the Fabric Guides’ edges on the bottom Ruler up to the folded edge of the fabric.

3) Hold the Ruler on the left in place with your left hand while squeezing the release levers on the Connector with your right hand to take the bottom ruler off. Then trim off the raw edge. (Reverse this if you're left-handed.)

4) You can then slide the Guide up to the fabric's edge, and start cutting accurate strips from the same side of the fabric without having to rotate it 180º.

With the full width of the fabric folded only once to two layers,
you can square up the Super Easy Way with
three Guidelines Rulers connected as a corner square.

1) Connect three 6”x12” Guidelines Rulers to make a corner square.

2) Line the Fabric Guides’ edges on the bottom Ruler up to the folded edge of the fabric.

3) Hold the 6”x24” Ruler in place with your left hand while squeezing the release levers on the Connector with your right hand to take the bottom ruler off. Then trim off the raw edge.

4) You can then slide the Guide up to the fabric's edge, and start cutting accurate strips from the same side of the fabric without having to rotate it 180º.

End to End, Side by Side or as a Corner Square

You can make a 6"x24" to cut the full width of fabric or connect them side-by-side to cut wider pieces. You can even make a Corner Square to square up but taken apart, they will fit in a small bag or even in the case with your sewing machine.

1) Insert the Tabs on the ends of both lower arms on the Connector into the center of the holes in the ruler.

2) Push on both arms and slide the Connector to the right until you hear a click to lock it onto the first Ruler.

3) Insert the Tabs on the upper arms into the center of the holes in the 2nd ruler. Hold the Connector in place on the 1st ruler and slide the 2nd ruler to the left up against the Lip Edge.

How to Take the Rulers Apart

Squeeze the extensions on the end of the Connector together and slide the top ruler to the right until the tabs are back in the center of the holes.

Then you can lower the ruler and pull it away. Squeeze the extensions again to take the Connector off the other ruler.

Now you can start cutting strips using 1 or 2 Guidelines Rulers.

If you squared up the Super Easy Way, you're ready to start cutting strips.
If not, you'll need to rotate the fabric 180º first.

Set the Fabric Guides for the width of strip you want to cut. The Fabric Guides' edge will catch the fabric's edge for perfect alignment.

Using 1 Guidelines Ruler

To cut strips from the full width of fabric using 1 Ruler, it will need to be folded twice to four layers (about 11" long).

Using 2 Guidelines Rulers
Connected As a 24" Ruler

This way, you can cut strips from the full width of fabric only folded once to two layers (about 22" long).

Most quilters find it easier to cut straight strips this way.

You want all four sides of your squares to be exactly the same size.

Grooves in the Fabric Guides lock dead center onto the measurement lines underneath the Guidelines Ruler, making it easy to line up the exact same way every time and cut perfect squares.

Then trim off just inside the selvedge.

 

Finally, cut squares by lining up the edge of the strip to the Fabric Guide's edge.

There are two things that matter when sewing your pieces together into blocks.

  • Consistency - To have your blocks come out perfectly square and lay flat, you need to sew all the pieces together with the same width of seam allowance.
  • Accuracy - To have your blocks come out the right size, the width of your seam allowance should be a Scant ¼”.

If you sew nine 2 ½" squares together with a consistent Scant ¼” Seam Allowance, your block will measure 6 ½". That's a finished size of 6" with an extra ¼" all around so it can be sewn to other blocks or sashing to make a finished quilt.

So what is a Scant ¼” and why does it matter?

A Scant ¼” is just slightly less than a full ¼” and
the reason it matters in quilt piecing is actually pretty simple.

 

The thread and fold in a seam have some width. To compensate for that, you sew slightly less than a full ¼”, so your finished seams actually come out measuring a full ¼”.

That way, all the pieces and the finished blocks come
out measuring the exact sizes the pattern gives.


See how sewing a scant ¼" helps you get
nice pointy points in blocks like these.

The goal is to stick the Seam Guide in front of the presser foot of your sewing machine to help guide your fabric before it goes under the needle.

The Prep-Tool makes it easy to align the Seam Guide so it's a Scant ¼” to the right of the needle.

Guiding your fabric against the edge of the Seam Guide makes it much easier to sew consistently, accurate Scant ¼” seam allowances.

Every Perfect4Pattern Set comes
with a Prep-Tool that is a Scant ¼” wide and peel & stick Seam Guides with removable, reusable adhesive.


How to use the Prep-Tool to align the Seam Guide at a Scant ¼” on your sewing machine.

Butt the Prep-Tool up against the needle of your sewing machine on the side with the gold lip edges. Peel the paper off the Seam Guide and butt it up against the other side of the Prep-Tool and stick it down in front of your presser foot.

Remove the Prep-Tool and guide your fabric against the Seam Guide for accurate Scant 1/4" seam allowances.

Check the accuracy of your scant ¼” seam allowance after sewing.

Butt the gold lip edges of the Prep-Tool up to the edge of the fabric,
and you should see the line of stitching right along its edge.

The Prep-Tool takes the guesswork out of
marking precise seam lines.

Patterns often tell you to stop a ¼” from the edge of the fabric. What they really mean is stop right at the seam line, which is a scant ¼”. That’s the secret to sharp mitered binding corners and precise set in seams. Learn More.

The Prep-Tool also takes the guesswork out of accurately pre-trimming tirangle points. Learn More.