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Thread: Backing fabrics... which is better? Cut or torn?

  1. #1
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    Another thread on the forum has me wondering how most people prefer their backing fabric purchases to be handled.

    We cut - not tear - our fabrics.

    But... if a fabric is wrapped crookedly on the bolt, that creates a problem. And backing fabrics are folded not once, but twice, which magnifies any wrapping issues.

    We once carried the inexpensive backing fabrics, and those were wrapped so crookedly that we swore we would NEVER carry them again. We would had to give an extra FOOT on every cut, to be sure that the customer was not going to come up short. (And yes, we actually did give the extra foot, for free.) And I'm very glad that those backings are all gone now. Good riddance!

    Every shop does need to have some backings, though, and we chose to try again with a nice group from Wilmington. http://www.favoritefabric.com/cgi/co...t_backing.html

    I did a test-tear on one of the bolts to check the grain, and it is still off, though not by as much.

    So I'm putting it out to the forum, to ask what would you prefer? That we tear the fabric, giving an extra 3" on the cut to allow for the warped and wavy edges... or that we cut the fabric, giving an extra 6" to allow for the crooked wrap?

    Please don't base your answer on "Gee, do I want 3 inches for free or 6 inches for free?" ... that's not the point. The question at the heart of this is, in order to receive the amount of fabric that you need and are paying for, straight and not warped, are you happier/more comfortable with tearing, or cutting, given that this is a backing fabric?

    I know I can always count on the Quilting Board members for thoughful answers... so please let me know what your opinion is.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Tilladare's Avatar
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    List me in the Torn voting column
    But then, I prefer my yardage torn as well

  3. #3
    Power Poster ann clare's Avatar
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    I like to have my fabric cut.

  4. #4
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I usually tear my backings so haveing them purchased torn does not bother me in the least!

  5. #5
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    Tearing works best for me

  6. #6
    Super Member luv-e's Avatar
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    Torn to keep straight

  7. #7
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    torn for me!

  8. #8
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    I like mine torn. :D

  9. #9
    Senior Member Jenni M's Avatar
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    I vote for torn. By the way, do you carry moda 200 count 120" unbleached muslin?

  10. #10
    Super Member candi's Avatar
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    It doesn't matter to me either way, I prewash all my fabrics, they shrink (unevenly mostly) and I have to fold and cut again.

    Lovely backings BTW.

  11. #11
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    Knowing that the grain is straight tends to make up for any rippling caused by tearing. Makes it easier to tell how much you need to do the muscle-building stretch to get it back on grain ;)

  12. #12
    Senior Member tlcquiltnut's Avatar
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    I used to like it cut.......BUT last year the quilt shop started to tear it. And I discovered it was straighter done that way...so TORN....

  13. #13
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    Torn at the store. It doesn't seem to matter that much about the brand, I think that all of them at one time or other are put on rolls unevenly.
    I've bought sheets at a thrift store, in very good condition, and torn them mainly to get rid of the seams. On some of these, name brands, one edge left on the seams can be up to TWO inches more than the other end of the same seam. I'm talking bottom small seam, and top big seam. The side seams are more accurate in the way they tear, mostly even from top to bottom.

  14. #14
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    I tear as long as it is straight. I noticed some issues lately.

  15. #15
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    Torn then i know it starts out straight. Giving extra inches does not always work because one will not know how uneven it is and is able to give enough. I got some from a shop and they did give extra but when I evened it up I was still short.

  16. #16
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    I would rather have it torn.

  17. #17
    Senior Member pstoner's Avatar
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    Oh the backing issue! Well, I have had a horrible time with a backing situation lately, thought I had it figured out, but then the LQS sent a "fix" and it was wrong (not the same fabric).

    So today, I went out and purchased something (not what I had my heart set on), so am very disappointed.

    If tearing will even the fabric, then torn would be my answer (not because I would get "X" number of inches free), but whatever makes the fabric what I need/ordered and paid for would really be great.

    I am completely wiped out dealing with backing issues this week so sorry if my post is more like venting, but I just want to have what I chose for backing to be right when I get it home and am ready to assemble my quilt.

  18. #18
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    I like to tear my fabric, especially for strips etc. It is the only way I can get it straight. In order to get perfect cuts I have to prewash and starch the fabric and then use my accuquilt to insure perfect straight of grain.

  19. #19
    Super Member Tink's Mom's Avatar
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    I generally prefer torn...it gives you a straight grain...but it does weaken the threads near the tear.

  20. #20
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I'm old. I tear.

  21. #21
    Super Member clem55's Avatar
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    I prefer tearing.

  22. #22
    Super Member hobo2000's Avatar
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    Only torn.

  23. #23
    Super Member Jennifer22206's Avatar
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    I've never gotten anything torn (that I know of) but I've only ever heard good things about torn. So that's what I'd go with.

  24. #24
    Super Member sewwhat85's Avatar
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    my vote is torn

  25. #25
    Senior Member NDQuilts's Avatar
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    Either. I always add extra to my order so I'm covered

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