Do you fudge or measure?

It is a simple question….when you are quilting, do you fudge or do you measure? My answer is a resounding BOTH!!

I was struck by the question when I watched two quilting demonstrations back to back. The first was with Angela Walters who advocates a bit of fudging to make things fit properly. The second was by Kate Quinn of FabriKated Quilts. She is a certified demonstrator for Westalee Rulers., and Westalee runs to the “measure it” side of quilting!!!

As I thought about it, I realized that there is a place for BOTH ways of thinking and then, as the afternoon progressed, I found myself with an opportunity to do both!!

I was continuing to work on the Angela Walters Ruler FMQ Challenge, trying to get the hang of using wavy rulers. The problem that I have is when I quilt using a longer ruler, it often slips slightly as I quilt meaning that it doesn’t line up well when I am ready to do the echo lines.

If the echoes are 1/4-inch, I find it easier to free-hand them, but this time I wanted to make a 1/2-inch echo and I knew that I needed to use the ruler. As I cast my mind back to the Westalee demonstration, I remembered them showing this funky little tool……

I had always wondered what it was used for and was excited to learn that it can be used to measure the distances between the ruler and the previous stitching line. I was going to need a 3/4-inch measurement so I added the three 1/4-inch marks to the 1-inch side.

I put the 3/4-inch mark on the line that I had just quilted and bumped the ruler up against the tool’s edge

Now, when I quilted against the ruler edge, I ended up with a 1/2-inch echo.

I stopped at the top/bottom of each arc to measure the next arc that I would quilt.

That way I knew that I was staying the correct distance apart and proving that the “measure” method worked!!

I quilted several lines using this technique and then went back to 1/4-inch lines using the “fudge” method!!

Hmmm… seems that you can intermix them easily and effectively….

….and the end result can be amazing!!!

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