Go Back  Quiltingboard Forums > Main
Fussy Cutting >

Fussy Cutting

Fussy Cutting

Old 08-05-2016, 04:01 PM
Super Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 2,055
Default Fussy Cutting

I'm a new quilter. I really like "I spy" quilts and have participated in two small swaps (and hope to participate in others). I learned quickly that you don't want to fussy cut anything. However, before I figured that out, I acquired several pieces that will require it. Also, I buy fabric that doesn't look like it will need it and it does. So, either I throw that cow fabric (and others) in the trash, or fussy cut it.

So far, my efforts have wasted lots of fabric and yielded few usable pieces. Often, I miss-cut and it's the wrong size or not square. Other times, I mess up three images in the fabric to get one.

Is there a trick to it? I've looked on youtube.com and each has a little piece of fabric that they fussy cut an image from on a rotating cutting board. If you just whack it up into smaller pieces and fussy cut it, I got it. You can't put a big piece of fabric on a rotating board, though.

It seems like there should be a way to cut an accurate image out of the bigger piece without destroying the surrounding images. Am I dreaming?

bkay is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 04:14 PM
QuiltnNan's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: western NY formerly MN, FL, NC, SC
Posts: 51,289

it is best to use a ruler or template that you can see through. make sure that an important part of the design does not fall in the seam allowance.

here's a you tube video that might help https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mS3BCfko6Bc
Nancy in western NY
before you speak T.H.I.N.K. T is it True? H is it Helpful? I is it Inspiring? N is it Necessary? K is it Kind?
Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance.
QuiltnNan is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 06:16 PM
Power Poster
sewbizgirl's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 21,219

Usually you do waste a lot of fabric by fussy cutting. In order to get those 5" squares you may have to ruin the three potential images around it. It all depends on how far the design is scattered and the size of the squares. So keep that in mind when you shop for I Spy fabric. Smaller prints don't require fussy cutting, but big pictures of objects will. And the other things around them will get chopped up in the process.
sewbizgirl is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 06:23 PM
Super Member
Kassaundra's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Rural Oklahoma
Posts: 5,356

I love fussy cutting!!!! I call cutting willy nilly haphazard where ever the number lands as "cutting fabric like a barbarian" lol lol lol I do cut fabric "like a barbarian" for normal quilting. But I do several projects that are intensely fussy cut. (La Pass) The easiest way I have found is to use a see through template and draw around the cutting line (outside edge of the template) and cut w/ scissors.
Kassaundra is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 06:36 PM
Super Member
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 1,910

I love fussy cutting. When I buy fabric with a specific image, I buy it knowing that I will "waste" fabric. See through templates or rulers are a must. As they say, "practice, practice, practice". Keep at it, and you will have your "light bulb" moment. Good luck!
Anniedeb is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 06:51 PM
Power Poster
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Southern USA
Posts: 12,073

There are many fussy cutting rulers and templates available. Using a regular ruler will frustrate you. Cut the fabric in 1/4 yard pieces to use the rotating mats. There will be waste when fussy cutting and many times you will have to cut into another image to get the seam allowance. If waste bothers you then don't do fussy cutting.
Onebyone is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 06:54 PM
Power Poster
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 38,006

I usually use a rotary cutting ruler in the size square I want. I can see through it and I cut my square out of the fabric piece where the best image is but try to keep it along the edge. Fussy cutting kind of makes Swiss cheese out of fabric if I cut more then one from each piece. You can order I Spy squares from online fabric companies if you don't want Swiss cheese fabric remnants.
Tartan is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 07:08 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: 1000 miles from nowwhere
Posts: 671

I have been quilting for years and finally bought the rotating mat why I didn't buy one sooner I don't know .....just love it and also got a set of fons and porter fussy cut square ''rulers'' life is good [used my 60 % off at joann's was reasonable
yel is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 07:09 PM
Super Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Chula Vista CA
Posts: 6,931

Making "I Spy" quilts are my favorite - and I do a lot of fussy cutting. Nothing annoys me more than to see a kids quilt and the main character has its head cut off. I don't care if it a charity quilt or not - no child wants to see that. There is a lot of waste - but that goes with the that type of quilt. Several of mine are hexagon quilts and the hexagon template that I use to cut them out I can see thru, for my squares I have a clear ruler so they can be centered. When I cut out the images I do use the 28mm rotary cutter, it doesn't make a big slice. The only other way to do it would be to outline your template on the fabric and cut it out with scissors. (Which I am not willing to do.)
quiltingcandy is offline  
Old 08-05-2016, 09:09 PM
Super Member
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Pratt Kansas
Posts: 1,222

I make a reverse template slightly bigger than my block-including seam allowances. . (Paper with block sized hole cut in it) I mark the corners with a mechanical pencil (its a thin fine mark) I then rotary cut it. It was slightly bigger, so you see your marks outside the rotary ruler and they get cut away.
quiltmouse is offline  
Related Topics
Thread Starter
Last Post
11-10-2010 05:24 PM
Links and Resources
10-27-2010 08:53 PM
07-27-2010 11:56 AM
Links and Resources
04-18-2010 07:26 PM
01-05-2010 08:11 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

FREE Quilting Newsletter

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.