Hi fellow Quilting Friend!
i have posted a couple of times before, and not to belayer the fact, I am in a wheel chair, so I must find many alternative ways to quilting step!
I use and purchase a great deal of precuts due to the ease of accurate cutting in a sitting position. I almost exclusively use Missouri Star Quilting Co. As my supplier of choice. I find them incredibly helpful, and their customer service is unsurpassed, in my opinion.
My problem is that after receiving a bad batch of Char Squares (not one in 8 packs were square to 5 inches (and which MSQC immediately made amends for!), I started checking all my precuts for accuracy, particularly, Jelly Rolls, which I use a lot of finding them the most versatile, with the least fabric wastage.
MY QUESTION IS: I am finding more and more of.the strips to be behaving as if they were cut on the bias, which they are not! A large portion of my purchases, particularly the ones with the pinked edges, to be shy of the 2 1/2 width promised. As you all know, if you are off in one area, and then perhaps piece as smidgen off, etc., you end up with Wonkey piece? Have any of you been experiencing these similar sizing issues? It's really beginning to take the fun out of quilting for me and, being so homebound, this is my favorite diversion, sometimes spending 6-8 hours a day (in paced increments, of course). I am a very exact seamstress, pin my points and take a lot of care with each individual block to see that it is square, so I don't have to square up a huge, completed quilt which is almost impossible for me to do in a sitting position.
I have found it is important when strip sewing the jelly rolls to cut them in half to stay true to the 1/4 inch seam?
Please! Is anyone else who uses precuts, particularly Jelly Rolls to be having the same problem! I am so discouraged. Any response or help would be so appreciated. Oh, one other thing. I am very careful to press, not iron the strips of fabric; that little variant can really cause a true mess, usually resulting in having to dispose of the entire strip set!
Thank You so much, in advance. You all are so great and always so helpful!
Good Morning Karlee, I was having a problem with some of the pinked edge precuts, and decided for me at least that I just didn't like them. I stopped purchasing them about a year ago. I am not in the position that you are as far as wheelchair, I have arthritis and they were a savings to me when I didn't spend the day making my hands and shoulders worse. So in answering your question I can only say that I have moved away from " the bake shop" When Jenny Doan uses the Moda fabrics, she says in her videos that the edge of the pinked is the true size, but when you handle fabrics those edges become wonky. I do still purchase some pre cuts, layer cakes are my fav, However when I am OK in my pocket book I've found that I really love the FQ's so that I can cut out my 2.5" strips in half, getting the same piece in two parts and have my layer cake and charms if I want all in those cuts. I understand that may not help you as you need to have the cuts for ease. I hope you consider purchasing the FQ bundles instead of all the different cuts. Believe me when I tell you it is cheaper as well. 1 Fq will produce 2 strips 2.5 x 21, 2 layer cakes 10x10 or several charms, and 6" squares. I have a new bin that holds these fabrics once I have cut them, I love the different patterns for precuts & I find that each of the cut Fats will produce several quilt tops.
You are probably NOT alone in your discovery. You may want to sew your strips using the right needle position 1 or 2 clicks, so that the feed dogs have more true fabric to hold on to that may eliminate the wonky or wavy look, and control any stretch you feel. I don't pin, I have switched to glue basting. Hope this is helpful to you. Having fun is what we all want. I hate stress. I did fashion sewing for 40+ years and that is why I like the piecing less stress. lol
I found my Moda jelly rolls to be more than 2-1/2 inches and I had to trim all of the pinked edges (creating a big mess and a lot of work). Since I bought these so I wouldn't have to do all of that cutting, it defeated the purpose. I'm not buying anymore Moda jellyrolls, or any jellyrolls with pinked edges. I've had no problem with the other ones.
I no longer purchase any pre-cuts. After experiencing the same problem you had with 5" (LOL) charms and several attempts at jelly rolls, I absolutely refuse to relinquish cutting control. I have found that Moda is the worst. I purchased several jelly rolls that looked like bows - there wasn't a straight cut in 40 strips. I have also had a great deal of trouble with current sizing if the sides are pinked.
I have only ever used a couple of Moda precuts but they were not great. They also leave the selvedge on and that makes the pieces shorter as I don't like the selvedge in my quilt.
I am lucky that my local quilt shop cuts their own jelly rolls, dessert rolls. layer cakes etc etc. Can you try a different retailer?
I have used the Fat Quarter company a couple of times as for me in UK the postage is usually extremely high, hopefully people in US will see your post and be able to help you.
thanks for for the very informative reply. I have had quite a few comments and it seems like I am not alone in the frustration with irregular sizing in precuts. It really bothers me that they are so heavily marketed, by even the better quality fabric lines, but still so off in size. I am so disgusted with them, that I very much agree with you. I am going to go straight to the fat quarter cuts. They are still a manageable size, I will just have to see if I can find a taller chair, transfer to it, which will give me more leverage when cutting. Thank you again for your help. Confirming the problems I have been having with size means a lot to me; I don't feel so I frustrated, thinking it is just me or that I am suddenly regressing to a "beginner" with all the associated problems to over come! Karlee.