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Cutting borders

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Lesley posted on Tue, Jan 1 2013 12:02 PM

As bit of a novice who is forever asking questions does anyone have a sure fire way to cut borders and smashing straight? I do struggle cutting anything straight I have to admit ! I have just done the strips for Bars of Gold and now need to cut the borders and sashing. The fabric is plenty long enough but I seem to get in a bit of a twist with it all. An advice would be appreciated. Thanks Lesley x

 

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Hi Lesley, it is nice to meet you.

As for cutting any long strips, I try to fold the fabric so I'm only cutting across, at the most 18 or 20". I still struggle with the ruler slipping and even more so now as I do not have a lot of strength in my hands, but I just take my time and walk my fingers up the ruler trying to keep my pinky on the outside edge to help keep it from slipping. Like everything else in quilting it takes time and lots of practice to get it figured out, so hang in there.

Life is like a quilt...bits & pieces, joy & sorrow, stitched with love

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Agnes replied on Tue, Jan 1 2013 12:34 PM

I think the twisting you speak of is probably due to the folds not being dead on. Then when I cut I put the inch line on my ruler right square with the fold. Also something to watch is that when doing that the edge of the fabric is a perfect 90 degrees to that line. If not, you need to trim it so it is. It is quite common that when you move your fabric you will have to true up that line again. Yes, it's a teensy bit of "wastage" but very important to getting perfectly square corners. Something to consider to help with the ruler not moving is adding some sort of grip dots on the underside. Even with those walk your hand along the ruler like Spud explained.

Agnes in NW Ontario

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Sue replied on Tue, Jan 1 2013 12:51 PM

Hi Lesley,

First and foremost, make sure you do not have waves when folding your fabric.  To do this, while holding your ironed  fabric up in the air match the edges then hold them apart with your fingers, now look at the fold only, does it hang straight and smooth?  If so you are ready to lay it on your mat and cut OR if it is too much for your mat, repeat the folding process.  If your fold is wavy, move one side or the other until it hangs straight and true.  You will have to "square up" the edges before cutting.  I always do this whenever I am cutting anything AND like Spud, I walk my fingers up the ruler.

Hope this helps,

From the Piney Woods of East Texas

In The Piney Woods of Deep East Texas

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Thanks ladies will give it a go tomorrow . I am struggling at the moment as I fell flat on my back the week before Christmas and can only do things in short bursts, I have to try and go back to work Thursday so that will curb my quilting somewhat . Hmm work really gets in the way !

 

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Hope you get to feeling better Lesley.  That work thing is kind of a catch 22, no work and you cannot afford to quilt, you work and don't have as much time (at least that is the theory) I found when I quit work I did not seem to get as much done as when I was working LOL

Life is like a quilt...bits & pieces, joy & sorrow, stitched with love

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Agnes replied on Tue, Jan 1 2013 5:27 PM

Spudgrandma:
I found when I quit work I did not seem to get as much done as when I was working LOL

That seems very common because we don't have to write hobbies into the schedule so we fritter far more time away. There's a lot of truth to the saying, " If you need something done ask the busiest person." It's all about time management.

Agnes in NW Ontario

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Diana replied on Tue, Jan 1 2013 5:50 PM

I found that if the ruler has a habit of slipping, I put something heavy on the far end of the ruler, like my can of spray starch.  Just enough weight to keep the ruler from slipping.  I also make sure that if I fold the fabric in quarters, keep the two folds parallel when you measure and before you cut.   If they are not parallel, refold and measure again.  Hope this helps out.

I think someone mentioned a long time ago about "Quilt Rocks".  Put them on far side of rulers to keep them from slipping........

Diana (Bink) in East Tn. 

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Welcome, Leslie ! Lots of good advice here. I got so frustrated with my ruler slipping I finally bought a creative grids ruler and oh, how wonderful it is. Also a handle with suction cups to hold on to the ruler while your cutting. It was the best investment I have made. Good luck !     Susan

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Sorry about the misspelled name, Lesley.   Susan

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I agree that Creative Grids makes the best rulers.  Too bad Joann's doesn't carry those.  To help with my other brand rulers, I use those adhesive sandpaper dots.  They help a lot.  And, yes, I like the suction cup handles, too!


On the banks of the Mississippi River in north central Minnesota (Brainerd lakes area)

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Marie replied on Tue, Jan 1 2013 9:30 PM

Diana, that was our beloved Diane who mentioned the "quilt rock", she used one.  I miss her so much.

Millbury, MA

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Marie:

Diana, that was our beloved Diane who mentioned the "quilt rock", she used one.  I miss her so much.

I was just thinking about her the other day. :(

Life is like a quilt...bits & pieces, joy & sorrow, stitched with love

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Marie replied on Wed, Jan 2 2013 10:43 AM

Spud, with me it's daily, I have many of her things that Wayne gave me, plaques that she painted, dishes she painted, her sewing cabinet and sewing machine, which I bought from him etc.  She always kept us in tears from laughing at her quick wit.  I sometimes go way back in the threads just to read some of her posts, it puts such a big smile on my face.

Millbury, MA

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