DIY Quilt Block Template – Trimming Made Easy!

There are endless types of quilting rulers out there. One in every shape and size imaginable.

But even if you’re tired and frustrated with trying to line up quilt blocks using the simple straight ruler that came with your cutting mat, you don’t need to go out and buy a new ruler size or shape. Try this DIY template first!

I like to make my own template when working with patchwork quilts that require multiple fabric cuts all in the same size. It’s been especially helpful during t-shirt quilting when I need to center graphics. All you need is a firm medium such as a cereal or cardboard box, manila folder, cardstock, or any other thick paper. I used a manila folder for this 5″ x 5″ template.

First, use a straight edge ruler to trace the block size you’d like. Don’t forget to add in your seam allowance in your measurements here if you haven’t already.

Second, cut the cardboard down to your desired block size.

Third, draw two lines. One across the center of the block lengthwise and and one across the center of the block widthwise.

Finally, for easy centering with your DIY template, cut a hole in the direct center of the cardboard so you can see design placement. I use my rotary cutter to make my centering hole. If you don’t want to risk dulling your blade, you can use scissors. And if you don’t want a hole in the middle, just use the lines you already drew to help with the centering process.

My 5” self made template with a centering hole is shown below. It makes centering and cutting a lot faster! This trick works, too, if you don’t have a rotary cutter. Simply trace around the cardboard template with a marker or pen and then use scissors to cut along the straight lines you drew.

Together we can find more ways to reclaim fabric
and breathe meaning, joy, and life into our sewing.

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