If you don't have a clear ruler, here is why you might consider getting one at some point:
1. It's very helpful when lining things up. Combine it with a grid surface, like my beloved Dritz Superboard, or another surface with a grid, and it is very helpful for getting things straight and making accurate marks.
Here I wanted to mark 0.75" from the top of this piece, so I lined up the fabric with one of the gridlines on my cutting board, and then matched the 0.25" mark on the clear ruler to the bottom of the 1" blue gridline. Now the top of the ruler is perfectly showing where 0.75" is located.
2. You can use it as compass to make circles and arcs. There are guide holes every 0.5" down the middle and it's great for drawing perfect circles!
In this picture I have a pin in the center to hold it down, but you really want to use another pen or an awl (I'll talk about this handy sewing tool another day) in the center pivot hole. The pin doesn't fill in the hole completely so the ruler isn't firmly in held in place, and it can get wobbly as you draw the circle.
I haven't had this very long, so these two benefits are only what I've noticed so far. Maybe other great uses will turn up as I get more familiar with it. If you have one, please leave a comment letting us know what you like about yours.
It's very possible the ruler, cutting board, and awl are available at your local fabric store. If not, they are available several places online. The links in this post will take you directly to where they can be ordered to on Amazon (disclosure: I'm an Amazon affiliate).
Anyway, I'm very happy with the clear ruler and wanted to share my experience with this tool.
This is my favorite interfacing. I'm not sure what exactly makes it different than other interfacings, but think it has to do with the tight weave and excellent adhesive. Once I apply it, it rarely comes away from the fabric. I have some interfaced pieces in my scrap bin that have been in there for 2-4 years, and this interfacing is still securely applied to the fabric. It's not going anywhere...
This BobbinSaver thing is making my sewing life easier. It holds bobbins neatly and most importantly, it keeps them from unwinding! I've spilled my bobbins SOOO many times, making a huge and annoying mess. It always happens when I go to pick one up and end up accidentally pulling the unwinding tails of other bobbins.
The BobbinSaver keeps them from unwinding and even if you drop the whole thing, it might roll around for a bit, but the bobbins aren't coming out! They slide easily in and out by hand, but are securely held by the rubbery plastic donut shape until you decide take them out.
These little scissors are fantastic for thread trimming and also clipping/notching curves! They are super strong and sharp, and easily cut through multiple layers. The handle is designed so you can get three fingers in the holes for some leverage. The small size makes them easy to use for detail work. They can be used with either hand, so you lefties aren't left out.
Swatch Book pattern pieces on chipboard, hanging on pin board.
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Back in April, Arvey Paper, the store where I bought chipboard for my pattern pieces, went out of business. It was convenient to have a local place I could just stop by and get a few sheets at a time. I miss that store sometimes!
So now I buy it in massive quantities, which I admit does give me a bit of a greedy thrill. It's satisfying to know I won't be running out any time soon. But when "soon" means more like 2 years, it might be too much.
The moral of this story is there are two sizes available in my etsy shop now--8.5" x 11" and 8.5" x 14".
Chipboard is fantastic for making pattern pieces. It is used for other crafts too, but I'm not sure what they are...book making, cards, ???
I make all my original pattern pieces with chipboard these days, and for older patterns, I print them out and tape or glue them to the chipboard.
Then I punch a hole in the pieces and hang them up on one of the many pinboards hanging on my sewing room walls. The walls and ceiling are all the left over space in the sewing room. For now, I'll leave the ceiling out of it, but perhaps next year I'll be showing you some pegboard ceiling contraption I've built!
Having the pattern pieces hanging where I can see them has helped with my productivity lately. It helps me remember they exist, and yet keeps them from being clutter and stacking up in random piles.
Each size of chipboard package comes with 25 pieces. This is the most I can get in the Priority envelopes and still follow the USPS rules. They end up weighing a lot, so the Priority Flat Rate envelopes are the only way to ship them that makes sense.
The 8.5" x 14" size is great for bigger things (used some of it to make grocery bag pattern pieces), but I find myself using the 8.5" x 11" size most. I think it is the familarity of the size that makes me reach for it more often, and since most things I make are small, the standard paper size works just fine most of the time.
Any left-over scraps are used for my to-do and grocery lists. Since they are heavier and more substantial than a post-it note, I find I don't lose my list as often!