Friday, December 19, 2014

No Ruler Toe? No Problem.

Sort of.

You know how sometimes when working on a problem, you need fresh eyes? You just can't figure it out until you look at it with a new perspective? Well, that's happened today with ruler work.

I've been trying to figure out how those of you who want to do ruler work, but don't have a proper ruler toe, can fit a ruler toe to your various machines. But I have the ruler toe, so I haven't been playing around with the usual free motion feet that are out there. I haven't been thinking about what I would do if I had no ruler toe. I have been very careful to not be overly encouraging of using your regular free motion foot with a ruler for fear of the ruler slipping under or over the foot and causing damage to your machine and needle.

While surfing Pinterest, I found Marelize Ries from Stitch By Stitch. She's figured it out! Turns out she had won a set of Fine Line Rulers from Linda at Flourishing Palms. Marelize doesn't have a ruler foot, but that didn't stop her. The smart cookie figured out that she could use the ruler on the right side of her free motion quilting foot and run it along the shaft of the foot, not the actual ring around the needle. (Click on the first link above to go to her site and see how she's using it. She's using a  Bernina. Visit Linda too! Great quilting goodness at both sites.)

I'm running the ruler along the acrylic base at the bottom of the shaft of this generic hopping style foot.

This is fabulous! I'm kicking myself for not thinking of this. It's much safer than running the foot along the thin rim of a regular free motion foot. I gave it a whirl under my open toe hopping foot and while it got hung up with some of the hops, it certainly was in no danger of breaking a needle or taking out the timing of my machine. I found that slightly rocking the ruler by merit of the resistance strip down the middle away from the foot helped (pressing down more on the right side of the ruler).

Here you can see it more clearly with the needle up.

This positioning certainly does have some limitations, especially in being able to move the ruler around the foot as needed and is harder to judge spacing and alignment. You certainly can't use the Top Anchor rotating rulers with this method, but it should work well for simple ruler work designs.

I am so happy to share with you yet another way to use rulers with free motion quilting. Many thanks to Marelize!

7 comments:

  1. Hi Amy! Thanks for the FMQ shout-out. Yes, quilters are ingenious when it comes to finding work-arounds. And often the work-around is as efficient and do-able as the ideal situation. So glad Marelize found a way to use the Fine Line rulers she won. When I first tried ruler work, I used a small 1" X 6" Olfa ruler on the right side of the foot! Where there's a will, there's a way!

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  2. Amy you ROCK!!! I have been wanting to try ruler work soo bad and you found the way for me to do it. Thanks again and Merry Christmas!..Val

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    1. Thanks Val, but all the credit goes to Marelize. But your comments? Always make me smile. Thank you.

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  3. Wow! I just tried this with my Bernina #24 foot, which Marelize used, and I really like it. Wish I hadn't spent all that money on the Janome foot. Amy, thanks for your blogs about ruler work. I just found out about it and I love it.

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    1. I'm so glad you liked it. If you can use the Janome foot on your Bernina, there will be times that it will be the better tool in your toolbox, but it's always good to have options.

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  4. Wow! A ruler toe that I think I can afford!!!! Happy day. I loved the 17 binding tutorials on SewMamaSew. I will check them out and see if I find a better way. Missouri Quilt Co. has a wonderful tutorial on YouTube also,
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0vCWpxBRs20&list=PLwsSGrsXKa8ZeBV-xs580hDrVbtZVLdHf. Skip to 8:36 minutes for the part where the "Perfect" overlapping is explained.

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  5. I love Marelize's blog. She does some amazing work and I'm always inspired by her. Glad you found her.

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