TUTORIAL - Trimming Blocks

When cutting the background block for applique make sure you cut it at least 1/2" larger. No need to have a HUGE piece of fabric, but the applique process can shrink up the fabric slightly making it smaller than it is supposed to be. 

So now it needs to be trimmed (in this case - to 6 1/2"). Use a ruler that is appropriate to the size of block - I mostly use the 6 1/2" and a 12 1/2" for squaring blocks. Position the ruler so the ONE and the ONE (on the vertical and horizontal) are in the top right hand corner (top left for the lefties). You want to center the ruler (or using the lines depending on the size) so that you have an equal amount of background on both the outermost left and right hand side of the applique. Then center the ruler so you have an equal amount of background above and below the outermost top and bottom  edges of the applique. 

Once it is positioned correctly - trim off the right hand side AND the top  without moving the ruler.  Then life up the ruler and rotate the block 180  degrees and line up the edge of the ruler (or the lines depending on the size of your block) with the two fresh trimmed sides and trim off the last two sides. 

Here is the block trimmed to 6 1/2" with the applique centered left and right as well as top to bottom. 

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