To generate a square with a diagonal equal to half the circumference of my ball I start by measuring the ball. I don't use a measuring tape for this because a strip of paper gives me all the information I need. I wrap the strip of paper around the fattest part of the ball and insert a pin to mark the spot where the paper overlaps the starting point.

I remove the pin,

cut the paper at the pin mark and discard the excess. When I fold this strip in half I have a strip that is half the circumference of my ball and I can use it to make the square pattern I will use to cut my cross stitch pieces.

Below I will explain how to make the pattern with a blank sheet of paper, but first I will explain how to do it using graph paper because, if you have any graph paper, it is a bit easier.

When I use graph paper I draw the left side and base of the square pattern and then draw a diagonal line, from the bottom left corner up of the square up and to the right. (Note that the diagonal line hits the cross points of the graph paper to divide each small square in half.) I "measure" this line using my folded paper strip and make a pencil mark at the end.

Then I draw the top of the square, from the point where the mark crosses the diagonal line, over to the left side of the square. The line should be equal distance to the nearest graph paper line along its whole length. Finally I draw the right side of the square, from the point where the mark crosses the diagonal line, down to the base of the square. The line should be equal distance to the nearest graph paper line along its whole length. The resulting square has a diagonal that is exactly half the circumference of my styrofoam ball so I can use it as the pattern to cut my cross stitch fabric.

If I didn't have graph paper I could use any piece of piece of paper with a square corner. First I would fold the top left hand coner on the diagonal, so that the top edge of the paper is aligned with the left side of the paper. I would use my folded paper strip to "measure" the diagonal fold and a pencil to make a short line on the fold.

When I unfolded the paper I would poke a pin through the spot where the pencil line crosses the diagonal fold. (Then I would put the strip of paper in a safe place because I will use it later to make the patterns for the ultra suede circles.)

I would fold the paper so that the pin mark is on this new fold, making sure that the edge of the paper on top lines up with the edge of the paper below.

I would unfold the paper, give it a quarter turn

and fold it to mark the last side of the square. When I unfold the paper the creases would mark a square that has a diagonal dimension that equals half the circumference of my ball. Therefore I could use it for the pattern to cut my cross stitch fabric.

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Pinwheel 2011