A compact, easy-to-carry multi-function tape measure to perform a variety of different jobs at home or in the field and ideally suited for use by carpenters, contractors, do-it-yourselfers, and the like. The tape measure includes a housing in which the usual pull-out measuring tape is carried. A retaining lip projects outwardly from the top of the housing. The housing has a graduated straight edge that is aligned perpendicular with the retaining lip. In use, the housing is laid on its side such that the outwardly projecting retaining lip overhangs and moves into interlocking engagement with a work surface to be cut. At the same time, the straight edge of the housing lies against the work surface to create a guide along which a marking instrument is moved for marking a cutting line on the work surface. The housing may also include the additional features of a graduated straight edge extension pivotally coupled to the straight edge, a recess for receiving a stack of peel-off note sheets on which messages are written, a finger grip, a removable scribe for marking the work surface with the cutting line, a slide-out protractor attached to and movable with the straight edge, a digital display, and a level.