Favorite Tools – Tri Recs Acrylic Rulers

I’m using the set of Tri Recs acrylic rulers for my current quilt along, Modern Trees. This ruler set has been one of my favorite tools for a good 10+ years now and I’ll tell you why.

Tri Ruler

Tri Ruler

Recs Ruler

Recs Ruler

Not only does it make amazing tree blocks like those shown below, but you can make tons of other shapes, too!

Solid Trees

Solid Trees

Improv Trees

Improv Trees

My friend Lindsey who’s quilting along with everyone else, started playing around with her tri recs tools a few days ago (you buy it as a complete set of 2 rulers in the same package). She came up with this really cool diamond block.

Diamond Block

Diamond Block Using Tre-Recs

Even though she said it’s probably nothing new, the fact that she “discovered” this block while playing around is a testament to how versatile this tool is. She’s even written up a tutorial here.


54-40 or Fight Block

One of my favorite traditional quilt blocks is the 54-40 or fight block – a star variation.

(The name has reference to a political campaign about boundary lines.)

This image is courtesy of Quilter’s Cache – click here for a tutorial.

Notice how the star points are basically reversing the values from my tree tops above. The tutorial suggests using templates. You could also take some time with the math to figure it out. But, it’s just much easier to use the ruler set and not have to think about it.

For those of you that have never used the tri recs tool before, here’s a link to a fabulous you-tube tutorial from some of my favorite people – Fons and Porter.

My only suggestion for improvement would be for the manufacturer to make a ruler that’s bigger than 6 inches finished so I can make larger blocks. šŸ™‚

Click here to read more of my favorite tools blog entries.

13 thoughts on “Favorite Tools – Tri Recs Acrylic Rulers

  1. auntreeniequilts says:

    thanks Christa, i was just looking at the 54-40 or fight block last night, if you combine it with a goose tracks block it makes a really nice quilt. I was looking at the block instructions on the quilters cache website and was thinking ‘don’t i have a ruler for that?’ thanks for the heads up.

  2. Josie McRazie says:

    You my friend are a BAD influence! LOL I ordered mine yesterday and it should be here Thursday (love the prime benefits of free 2 day shipping) I really want to make these trees! Plus I have had my eyes on the 54-40 block for some time as well!

  3. dezertsuz says:

    You should link this one at Block Lotto this month – it’s a perfect fit! Although I bought a new set, I discovered (ahem) I already owned one, and had also brought one home from my friend’s studio when she died. So I had two sets to pass along to friends. My old set had a great tri-fold in it with wonderful directions on how to use the tool, which is no longer put in the new sets, and it had several possibilities printed on the cardboard which is no longer done. I thought that was interesting. Love that diamond.

  4. quiltingpiecebypiece says:

    I have to admit that I don’t use my tri-recs often. I seem to have problems getting the side points exactly 1/4″ from the edge and therefore they often get cut off. (I have been “reduced” to paper-piecing these kinds of triangles in the past!)

    I think your comment about cutting the little triangle off the top of the skinny triangle (from the post about making the trees) really helps in that regard.

  5. Ruthann says:

    So a silly question….may be their are self explanatory but in case they are not…do they come with an explanation how to use them?

    • Christa says:

      Not a silly question at all! They do come with a little info but it’s very minimal. I showed how to cut pieces in my step 7.1 of my Modern Trees Quilt Along. šŸ™‚

  6. Jessica B. says:

    I didn’t even realize I had this ruler set until I saw the pictures for your quilt along and thought, those look familiar! I have only a few rulers (Hex N More, a tumbler, and a couple of crazy quilt centers), but I just happened to have these ones. They had come in a package set for a quilt called School of Fish, by Darlene Zimmerman. I love them. šŸ™‚

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