Declutter Challenge 2022 - Day 10 - Rulers & Cutting Mats



Today we are tackling our rulers, cutting mats and templates.


We need our rulers for accurate cutting. But we can quickly accumulate way more than our space can handle. And because of the variety of shapes and sizes, you might have them stored in several different spaces.



If you have been sewing for more than 5 years, you have probably tested out your fair share of rulers and the various brands. And most likely that the ones that you started with are not the same that you are using now. Because our hands are different shapes and strengths we might also differ in our selection of favourites.


No matter which ones you have it is critical that they remain in good shape as our accuracy in our piecing depends on them. So take a look at your rulers and ask yourself:

  • Are these broken or damaged?

  • Are numbers and increments still legible?

  • Are the corners still sharp enough to use?

You might also have duplicates? For example, I found I had a duplicate 9” ruler which I transferred to my travel kit. I also found I had an 8” and 2 ½” version of the same triangle ruler. Since neither are used very often, I’ll donate one.



And then there are the specialty rulers. In the days when we attended workshops, there was often a unique ruler that we needed. And now I have a pile that I will never use again. I just need to take a deep breath, forget about the money I spent, and add them to the donation pile.


And there are other types of rulers. I had some dressmaking rulers, the curved ones for making clothing patterns. I wanted just one but they came in a set. I keep just the one I wanted and let the rest go...even though I have never taken them out of their plastic. And I will be finally letting go of the triangle set I used to make maps in university and have never used again.


It is also time to go through your cutting mats. How many cutting mats do you own? There are the flat ones for your cutting table, the rotary ones and the foldable travel ones. What kind of shape are they in? Unfortunately, cutting mats do not last forever. And if they are exposed to heat, they warp.



I appear to have one of each size. Last year I moved the midsized one to the studio. And I put my large rotary mat in my travel kit. The smallest one that I used to use for paper piecing I just no longer use. So though it's in perfect condition, I have passed it on to my husband.


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