Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Creating a 1 centimetre squared light grey grid on A4 paper using Inkscape

My wife wanted to draft out a crossword puzzle for her Rainbow Girl Guides unit. She needed a faint 1 centimetre squared grid to plan it out. She would use a pencil and plan the word positions. Finally, tracing over the words with a pen and drawing in required squares.

Inkscape is a free and open-source vector graphics editor, available for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X; it can be used to create or edit vector graphics such as illustrations, diagrams, line arts, charts, logos and complex paintings.

Inkscape has a Grid extension but, it requires that you enter some values in pixels.

So, in my case because I wanted 1 centimetre squares I

<SHIFT> + <CTRL> + <D>

which is the shortcuts keys for

File → Document Properties

I selected A4 and then selected in the 'Units' drop-down 'cm'. I noted down that, an A4 piece of paper was 21 cms width, by 29.7 cms height. I then changed the 'Units' drop-down to 'px' for pixels. This gave me 744.09 pixels width. I then divided 744.09 by 21. Rounding down...

35.43 pixels = 1 centimetres

Noting this down I then went and created the grid.

Extensions (Extras) → Render → Grid

I left the 'Line Width' at 1 pixel. I changed both the 'Horizontal' and 'Vertical' spacings to 35.4 pixels. Clicking on the 'Apply' button results in a visible and printable page with a 1 cms squared grid upon. However, this was in the default Stroke colour, black. I wanted to lighten this so that, it was just a faint background grid layout, for my wife to use. So, I wanted to change it to light grey colour lines.

Having highlighted the grid

<CTRL> + <A>

which is the shortcuts keys for

Edit → Select All

I then right mouse clicked on the '20% grey' colour from the colour pallete which was at the bottom of the editor pane. Offcourse, if I wanted this to be like a school math pages, I could have selected a light blue colour.


If you do not want to go through all of the above then, you can download my SVG file here,