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Thread: How to Cut Sashings..need a "...for dummies" version lesson!

  1. #1
    Junior Member coffeebreak's Avatar
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    Apr 2012

    How to Cut Sashings..need a "...for dummies" version lesson!

    Can anyone do a "...for dummies" version of how to cut sashings...salvage to salvage or length of fabric like with the fold or with the salvage edges? I was reading a discussion here about which way...and stetching etc, but realized I didn't know what the options are and why. LOF and WOF..what do those stand for? Length of fabric and width of fabric?

    I have been doing S to S thinking that I didn't want a big long sash due to stretching, but in this discussion they say it stretches that way...and I try to make short sashings anyway...but still sometimes like for the borders you just need one long piece sashing..I cut two and sew them together (not on the bias to stop stretching) and I still see that I get some stretch that way... I can usually ease it in and it isn't that noticable after I do the FMQ'ing. but I'd like to be able to do it so there is no stretch!

    And I also just cut the binding S toS and sew them together on the bias but I want a tad of stretch as that seems to help in putting it on and keeping it all straight and enough stretch to go over the edges etc.

    I do admit, I am less than eager to deal with bias...but if it is the best way to go...maybe someone can tell about how to cut that and when to use it on the bias.

    So can anyone give hte details as to which way to cut for least bit of stretch and the how to's and whys of both ways? Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    MTS is offline
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    Nov 2010
    S to S = WOF

    Bias bindings are really only needed on edges that have curves (scallops,etc), or if you want to take advantage of the fabric design (stripes, etc).
    Otherwise, cutting the binding strips WOF and joining them works just fine.

    I usually don't use sashings, or if I do, there are cornerstones or something else breaking them up, so I can easily cut WOF.

    I don't really worry that much about stretch in the sashings.
    Actually, I've never even thought about it.

    However, it would depend on the fabric pattern to determine if I would cut LOF or WOF.
    If it's a relatively solid fabric, then joining together on the diagonal (the same you do for binding strips) and pressing well, will result in an almost invisible seam.

    If, however, there is a busy pattern that I don't want to disrupt, then I would cut it LOF.

    But keep in mind that you have to be careful, as sometimes the same fabric cut LOF and WOF can look totally different in the vertical and horizontal sashings.

    And that's TOTALLY up to you and your personal aesthetic to decide which look you prefer - LOF, WOF or a combo.

    eta: also if I had a long sashing on the outside, regardless of how the strips were cut, I would most likely be joining that to the other BORDER strips, and then adding them all as one to the quilt center.

    As I prefer the look of mitered borders, it's much easier and cleaner to line them up this way.
    Last edited by MTS; 11-21-2012 at 08:49 AM.

  3. #3
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    Small town in Northeast Oregon close to Washington and Idaho
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    I agree with "MIS" completely! I never thought about stretch in my sashings. I am doing sashing right now for a BOM and I'm cutting WOF. Then with the borders, I'm cutting WOF also. I will just sew the pieces together. I have done LOF for borders when it's called for, but only then. I love mitered borders!!!!!! They are so beautiful to look at. I don't do them enough.
    "Be yourself...everyone else is taken."
    Strong people don't put others down...they build them up."
    "Remember that your instincts are more important than rules"

  4. #4
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    It's easy for me to decide. I cut everything WOF because I can never cut straight when I try to do LOF.

  5. #5
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
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    I also agree with MTS. I read somewhere that there are recommended ways to cut various quilt parts, but in the end, the fabric pattern trumps all. I let the print decide which way to cut sashings and have actually cut them in both directions so they line up. I also should do more mitered borders!
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  6. #6
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Dec 2008
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    The following explanation is for sashings that do not include cornerstones.

    Sashings typically need to be cut in both short lengths and long. The short lengths go between the quilt blocks, joining them side to side. Once you have these strips of blocks alternating with short sashing strips, you add a long strip to join two rows.

    Strips cut from the WOF (cut on the crossgrain) have slightly more stretch than strips cut from the length of the fabric (lengthwise grain). The lengthwise grain is always the most stable.

    For short sashing strips, such as those between the blocks, crossgrain is just fine. For long sashing strips, if you really want more stability and less stretching, then you can cut from the lengthwise grain. This is often inconvenient, and usually unnecessary, but it's fine to do it.

    The entire stretching issue can be avoided if you heavily starch your fabric before cutting strips. What I do for yardage is mix a 1:1 solution of Sta-Flo liquid laundry starch and water, "paint" this on the yardage using a large wall painting brush, wait a couple of minutes to allow the solution to penetrate the fibers, toss in the dryer, then iron with steam. This stabilizes the fabric so much that the strips will not stretch as you handle them, no matter which grain they are cut on.

  7. #7
    Power Poster
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    May 2008
    Some woven fabrics really are quite a bit stretchier one way than the other.

    One can take 'mark off' a ten inch length - stretch it and put it against a ruler to see how much longer it got.
    Then 'mark off' a ten inch length going the 'other way' - stretch that and put it against a ruler to see how long it is now.

    If the print doesn't matter, I generally prefer the length of fabric.

    By the way - when cutting border strips - even fabrics that appear to be an allover print - sometimes have a subtle stripe in them.

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