Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Math and shapes

Dear math teachers,
I'm sorry I ever thought (or voiced aloud) that I would never use math in my daily life. Sure, I'm not sitting around, doing proofs, but I am using math. Forgive me.

So yeah, this is probably stuff you know, but I thought it couldn't hurt to include some tips on cutting shapes.

I actually was inspired to do this post because I got an Accuquilt Go! Fabric Cutter for Christmas! It was one of the only things I asked for, and I'm so excited! What that means is that I will be able to make perfect circles every time (oh boy!).  But not everyone had a rockin' Christmas like me, so here you go.

Since we're on the subject, let's talk circles.

First determine how wide you want your circle to be (the diameter). Divide that in two (to get the measurement of the radius). I'm going to cut a circle with a radius of 3.

Now use a fabric marker to make a mark. Take a ruler and measure out from this the length of your radius (for me, 3 inches). Make a little mark. Shift your ruler slightly and make another mark, also 3 inches from the center. 

Keep doing this till you get back to your original mark. Now you have a dotty circle to cut!

Well, hello, beautiful!

Isosceles triangles:
Yeah, I'm using super cool math language. Word.

In case you've forgotten, though I'm sure you haven't, this is a triangle that has two equal sides (and angles). Here's a really (REALLY) easy way to cut those...

First decide the width and height you want for your triangle. I'll make one 4 inches wide and 5 inches tall. Fold your fabric in half. First, you'll cut the side that is not equal. For this, cut half the width perpendicular to the fold (the little purple line to the right side in the second pic). Measure (along the fold) your desired length. Make a mark and cut to there. Open it up and...


Equilateral triangles:
Remember this equation: a^2+b^2=c^2 ? You don't? That's ok because I jest...  we don't really need it, but did your algebra anxiety hit you for a moment? :)

It's way easier than that if we cut our triangle on the fold. How long do you want your triangle's sides? I'll make mine 4 inches. First, I want to cut the side that's perpendicular to the fold. Since its folded, I'll cut it two inches. Now I just take my ruler and place the end at that spot. Then just move it around till that side's going to be 4 inches.


Ain't they just lovely?  And so easy to do. :)

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