Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Drawing Circles

One of the quilts I am working on calls for me to cut one 14" and 16" circle from freezer paper. Since I do not have circle templates, I am doing it the long way. I thought I would share. I hope the pictures are not too dark.

1. Cut your freezer paper into a square the finished size of your circle. For example, for the 14" circle, I cut a 14"square of freezer paper.

2. Find the center of the square by marking horizontally, vertically, and diagonally from corner to corner. Make a large dot in the middle. Your square should be divided into eight parts.

3. Mark the diagonal lines where your arc is going to be. For example, for the 14" circle I marked the diagonal lines 7" from the center for a total of four marks along the diagonal lines. Since you cut a square the finished size, you don't have to worry about where the arc will fall on the horizontal and vertical lines—it will fall at the edge of the freezer paper.

4. Take string and tie it around a pencil as low as you can go without the string slipping off.

The picture below is what everything should look like—minus the circle, of course!
5. Hold your pencil as straight as you can with the tip to one of the arc marks. Pull your string taught (but not too tight, as this will cause the pencil to slip), and place your thumb nail tight against the center point with the string in between.

6. Mark your arc from one arc mark to another, taking one at a time and adjusting your string tension and length as you go. Continue all the way around.

7. Fold your paper in half, then half again, then in half again, following your division lines.
8. Find the most accurate eighth of an arc and cut all layers along that line.
Unfold and you will have a perfect circle!
I hope you enjoy! And, as always, I would love to know if there are better ways to do this.

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