Tips and Tutorials on the 22nd – #34 – Ruler and Bobbin Tips

Welcome to this month’s edition of Tips and Tutorials on the 22nd! It is the 34th linky party where you can share new or favorite tips and tutorials related to sewing and quilting. This is the beginning of a busy week for a lot of us. I am the chief cook for Thanksgiving and so the buying and cooking begins later today (I am writing this Monday Morning).

Last Month’s Link Ups

In case you missed them, here are last month’s linkups. I hope you enjoy seeing them…let them know you stopped by and visited! I am so grateful for their linking up to the party!

A Crossed Canoe Tutorial from Karen Goad
Playing in Isolation from Andrée Faubert
How to Plan Your Temperature Quilt from Leanne Parsons
Updated 4-at-a-Time Flying Geese from Yvonne Fuchs

Tip: Mark your Rulers for Trimming

Two things make trimming a block so much easier: 1) a spinning mat and 2) marking tape. The Olfa Rotating Cutting Mat* is perfect for this task as you don’t have to move the block, just the ruler. I use GE Design Ruler Stickers*, but I have also used masking tape, painter’s tape, and washi tape.

I mark two things for trimming this block. The center (4 1/4″) and the edges (8 1/2″) that I will use to square up the block. Knowing where to look makes the whole trimming process go quicker!

  1. Identify the center of the block. Trim.
    For this 8 1/2″ block the center is 4 1/4″. The two green arrows on the 4 1/4″ are pointing to the top and bottom of the inner square. This makes it pretty easy to find where I need to start trimming this block!

2. Rotate the mat to the left one turn.
The side I just trimmed winds up on the bottom.

3. Line up the center again.
The two green arrows on the 4 1/4″ are pointing to the top and bottom of the inner square. I also then line up the trimmed edge on one of the lines on the ruler. In the photo above it is the 1/2″ line at the bottom of the picture.

4. Make your cut and turn your block towards the left again.

5. You can trim the last two sides.
I have 2 arrows pointing to the 8 1/2″ corner (bottom left) and 8 1/2″ on the left side. They are lined up on the two edges of the block that I cut previously.

Now, how I mark my Longarm Bobbins!

I use these handy dots that I purchased, probably at Staples, with a sharpie and the write the type/color of the thread. You can see this one is S(ew) F(ine) #403. That way, if there are threads that are similar, I can tell right away which one is on the bobbin! I don’t do this for my Bernina, but I might for a machine that also used metal bobbins. Why? Because it is easy to get the stick off with rubbing alcohol.

Join the Linky Party

Now it’s your turn to post, and the rules are simple – write up a tip or group of tips or a tutorial that is quilting or sewing-related and link that post below. The linky party is open from midnight on the 22nd, through midnight on November 30th. The post does not have to be new but should be one that hasn’t been linked to Tips and Tutorials in the past. If you don’t have a blog, please send it to me ( and I will post your tip or tutorial for you!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Past Tips and Tutorials

In case you didn’t know, if you have missed some past #TTot22, you can check them out in the tab at the top of my page or on my Pinterest board.

Coming Up on My Blog

Kimberly Quilt Finish
A Christmas TableRunner
Tips and Tutorials on the 22nd (12/22)

Disclaimer: *Links with asterisk indicate an affiliate link and as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Your price is not any different, but a small percentage of the sale will go to supporting my blog.


  1. November 22, 2022 / 9:11 AM

    I had just done a post on hand quilting tips so shared that with you – I don’t know if many of your readers hand quilt but maybe a few?

  2. November 22, 2022 / 11:26 AM

    Hi Kathleen! Thanks for the linky party today. I am thrilled to have a tut to share, even though it’s a simple one. Great tips today – the rotating mat has been a life changer, don’t you think? Yes, we could do without it . . . but why? It makes so many tasks that much easier. I hope as the chief/master chef for Thanksgiving that you are getting a lot accomplished. You’ve got this! Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. {{Hugs}} a bunch! ~smile~ Roseanne

  3. November 22, 2022 / 11:52 AM

    Great tip for bobbin / thread organization! I keep my wound bobbins paired with their thread spools, but sometimes they get jumbled up and it’s a pain to sort out what’s what.

  4. Chrisknits
    November 22, 2022 / 10:29 PM

    I need those arrow stickers!! Wonderful tip, I think it will definitely come in handy when trimming things, Thanks

  5. November 24, 2022 / 11:37 PM

    Hi Kathleen, thanks for the tips on trimming a block. I’m going to have to come back to it the next time I need it. Happy Thanksgiving.

  6. November 25, 2022 / 12:42 PM

    Those arrow stickers are terrific! My eyes often go ziggy-zaggy when I’m trimming those type of blocks so they would definitely help! I don’t have a rotating mat but I often put one of my smaller mats on top of my big one, and it works just the same. Good bobbin tip too! I don’t have many bobbin colours/brands of thread, pretty much all Sew Fine, so outside of Statue and whatever other creamy one I have, they’re pretty easy to tell apart!

My Favorite Tools

Pins with Numbers & Arrows
Annies Soft and Stable Foam Stabilizer
By Annie’s Clear Vinyl
Heat N Bond Iron On Vinyl
Omni Thread, Purplelicious
Aurifil 50 weight thread
Hobbs Tuscanny Wool Batting
Freezer Paper Sheets
Binding Sasher
Nexcare Clear Skin Tape
Cluck Cluck Sew Tape
Simple Folded Corners Ruler
Free Motion Quilting Workbook
Shape by Shape Collection 2
Shape by Shape
DayLight Wafer 1 Light Box
Freezer paper
Siteground Web Hosting
Dream Cotton Batting
Sidekick Ruler
Hex N More Ruler
4″ Circular Plastic Needlepoint
Awesome Ocean Pattern
Schmetz NonStick Needle
Sulky Totally Stable
Barn Quilt by Sherry Shish
Applique Pressing Sheet
Mary Ellen’s Best Press Starch
Clover Bias Tape Maker 12mm
Woven Diamonds Pattern
Hobbs Premium 80/20 Batting
Woven Star Pattern
Wefty Needle
Quilt Hanger
Fat Quarter Shop
Westalee Sampler Template Set
Mettler 60 wt. Cotton Embroidery Thread
Sandboard for Hand Sewing/Appliqué
Clover Needle Threader
Sewline Black and White Pencil
Sewline Grey Pencil
Backyard Birds
Wing Clipper
Quilt Pounce
Hobbs Thermore Batting
Clover Chaco Liner – silver
Turnabout Patchwork by Terese Mairal Barreau
Sewline Glue Pen
Fusible 1″ Hexagon Paper
Fusible Appliqué Paper
Electric Quilt 8
Quilter’s Dream Select Batting
Quilt in A Day Log Cabin
Judy Martin Log Cabin
Emiko Toda Loeb
3M Command Strip Clothespins
Paper Templates for Lucy Boston
Lucy Boston Templates,MPP
Lucy Boston Patchwork of the Cross
Clover Wonder Clips
Thread magic
Clearly Perfect Angles
Slotted Triangle Trimmer