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Thread: I'll never buy FQs again.

  1. #1
    Super Member Sunnie's Avatar
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    I'll never buy FQs again.

    I decided to use some of my scraps and Fat Quarters for mug rugs. So as I press each one I am noticing how poorly cut the FQs are. Most of them I picked up at quilt shows so no one to yell at. I have pressed 8 so far and not one is squarely cut so that by the time I square them up I no longer have a FQ. So never again!!!

    I will stick to buying yardage (even quarter yards) that I can watch being cut and if I am being shorted I will point it out before the cut.
    Sunnie
    a dog show & quilt addict
    www.buckhollow.net

  2. #2
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    Most of what I own are FQ but I have learned to buy the ones cut by the manufacture and only certain brands. Sad not especially since they charge significantly more for them.
    Anna Quilts

  3. #3
    Super Member DOTTYMO's Avatar
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    Have you also noticed the difference in sizes. I made some mug buckets using fat quarters some were great but one I had to find a new material from my stash. I am not just talking about the width. I buy 1/2 metres or 1/2 yards it also ensures I have enough fabric when I fq is required and I have fabric for my applique stash
    Finished is better than a UFO

  4. #4
    Super Member SouthPStitches's Avatar
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    They can be very disappointing, especially if you're counting on using every bit of the fat quarter. Now that newer fabric has "shrunk" in width down to 40-42", the older patterns calling for fat quarters can leave you pinched too.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Little RoO's Avatar
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    I also have struggled with shops cutting fabric recently. I think it depends on the person cutting the fabric,and whether or not they are quilters. My local quilt shop, here in the UK, Midsomer Quilting is owned and run by a lovely lady who has a passion for quilting and her cutting is always straight and very generous making sure that you get more than the amount you need, however other stores are notoriously bad, not just department stores, but dedicated fabric shops...they just don't seem to understand the importance of looking at the fabric before cutting it and then making sure it is straight.....with fabric now costing upto $20 (14) /yard or meter ....I want it to be correct.

  6. #6
    Senior Member HouseDragon's Avatar
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    I've ironed over 80 FQs in the last two days plus some yardage.

    When is a FQ not a FQ?

    Traditionally a FQ has been 18" x 22". A yard is still 36" but these days quilt fabric widths vary from 44" wide to 40" wide (and who knows what the future will bring ~ anyone remember the bad old days of 36" wide?).

    The stack on my table varies from over 22" (the person who got the other "half" was cheated) to less than 19" wide (hmmmm ... I'm the other person who got cheated with these, I guess).

    Then there's the yardage.
    I bought half yards to have enough Black on White yardage for Bonnie Hunter's EASY STREET. Well, that was the plan anyway.

    Names of shops are left out to protect the guilty.

    Five
    of the half yards were cut nice and straight and were still nice and straight after pinking-washing-pressing.
    They were also on sale and at least two of the pieces were cut quite generously. Mahalo: you know who you are!

    The other four half yards from a different shop were cut catawompus and were even worse after pinking-washing-pressing. I've had that problem from that shop before and I usually stand there watching like a hawk and point out fabric coming off the bolt that's obviously seriously misaligned. This time I was still searching for more Black on White fabric instead of watching.

    Three to five inches off on either side after straightening the fabric just isn't acceptable. I can't afford to lose that much fabric that I've paid for. I'm saddened that the cutter didn't take the time to make sure I was getting what I was paying for.

    It's bad enough to get wonky or undersized FQs or yardage at a quilt show or big box store but our LQS should be more attentive to their customers!

    JMNOHO!
    If life gives you lemons, make Limoncello!

  7. #7
    Super Member nygal's Avatar
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    I noticed different sizes from a few that I've gotten from Connecting Threads. They weren't too bad but some were NOT as they should have been.
    When it seems like the world is falling to pieces remember that the pieces are falling into place. We are nearing closer to the End Times.

  8. #8
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nygal View Post
    I noticed different sizes from a few that I've gotten from Connecting Threads. They weren't too bad but some were NOT as they should have been.
    CT usually gives very generous cuts. If you contact them, I'm sure they will make it right.

  9. #9
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    It doesn't bother me if some fat quarters are not exact size but other precuts I expect to be exact.
    Got fabric?

  10. #10
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dunster View Post
    CT usually gives very generous cuts. If you contact them, I'm sure they will make it right.
    I strongly agree, CT does give generous cuts. The first time I ordered from them I thought I had been cheated because some of the fat quarters seemed small. Then I counted them and took a closer look, and realized that if I end up with a piece that seems on the small side, it's because they ran out of the bolt at that point and GAVE me that fat quarter at no charge. I had ordered 20 FQs and ended up with 24 pieces of fabric.

  11. #11
    Senior Member pinecone's Avatar
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    Don't get me started about FQs.

    Quote Originally Posted by HouseDragon View Post
    ...A yard is still 36" but these days quilt fabric widths vary from 44" wide to 40" wide (and who knows what the future will bring ~ anyone remember the bad old days of 36" wide?)....
    I have yardage of bubble gum pink of that stuff.

    piney

  12. #12
    Super Member patchsamkim's Avatar
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    The quilt shop has control over the 18" cut they make...and should measure at least 18" and not less. The 22" measurement will depend a lot on the fabric company. The shop is going to cut along the fold of the fabric. Sometimes one fabric can have a wider printed selvage than the other, so one half will have less usable fabric. Now days you really can't count on more than 18x20 for a fat quarter.

    Most of the time now, I will buy 1/2 yard fabrics, and if I need a fat quarter, I can cut the fabric in half, or measure 22" if that is what I will be needing, and the rest of the fabric I can add to my stash for the scrap quilts I make most of the time.

  13. #13
    Super Member ube quilting's Avatar
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    Buying a full 1/4yd is almost always cheaper too, if you have a use for that ammount of material. Sometimes you only need a little of a particular piece.
    I rarely buy fat quarters because of this problem.

    If stores would actually sell these shorted pieces as what they actually are and for the right price I might indulge more but I always feel cheated when I do buy them.
    peace
    no act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. Aesop

  14. #14
    Super Member Gramie bj's Avatar
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    I refuse to buy another fat quarter! IF you get your 18x22 it cost way too much! I wash everything before using, Yes even fat quarters ( put them in a sweater bag to wash) about 1/2 of them came out not square! So to keep my blood pressure down, and my self happy I only buy yardage now.

  15. #15
    Super Member Pat625's Avatar
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    Since most of my fabric is purchased without a pattern in mind, I usually buy yardage....I use fat quarters in scrappy projects of table runners, if I have them...

  16. #16
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    I only buy fat quarters at yard/estate sales at greatly reduced prices. And only if I absolutely love the patterns. It's just not worth it buying from the stores as there seems to be very little quality control in the cutting department.

  17. #17
    Super Member grann of 6's Avatar
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    I don't buy FQs any more either. When I first started quilting 4 or 5 years ago, I bought some FQ collections. Then when I have finally decided what to do with them, I find that the things I like to make need more than a FQ. So I stopped getting them. Now I buy at least a yard of whatever fabric I buy. When I made DGSs Turning Twenty, I cut my own FQs from the yardage I had collected, so glad I did because one or two FQs I tried to use were cattywumpus and not square enough to use. That turns out to be a big waste of valuable money. Maybe we, as the buying public, should boycott FQs entirely as a signal to the suppliers that we aren't going to tolerate an inferior product.

  18. #18
    Senior Member ghquilter53's Avatar
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    I am a worker at our LQS and we try to measure at least an extra quarter inch to make sure fat quarter is correct. At issue too is how the fabric comes off the bolt from the manufacturer. Sometimes it is very uneven and wrinkled and almost impossible to straighten. When that happens I try to cut extra generously. When cutting yardages for customers I always cut an extra inch or inch and a half.

  19. #19
    Super Member Dodie's Avatar
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    some of that is not that shops fault as I was buying some fabric the other day I noticed how terrible it was wrapped on the bolt there was no way they could straighten it and it was something I realy wanted so I bought a fourth yard extra to have plenty I know a lot of our local quilt shops are struggling with the high cost of everything and also the internet and I really don't want to lose our local shops so I do try to do most of my shopping there and I understand the carelessness of the way some of this fabric is wrapped is not there fault

  20. #20
    Junior Member joycet's Avatar
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    Red face Fat Quarters

    [QUOTE=Sunnie;5734974]I decided to use some of my scraps and Fat Quarters for mug rugs. So as I press each one I am noticing how poorly cut the FQs are. Most of them I picked up at quilt shows so no one to yell at. I have pressed 8 so far and not one is squarely cut so that by the time I square them up I no longer have a FQ. So never again!!!

    I love fat quarters. I try and buy them from quilt shops as I can't usually buy much yardage at one. I have noticed in cutting them that some aren't what they are suppose to be. Instead of being the usual 18"x22"...some were a LOT smaller. I'm talking good quality fabric. Sometimes it doesn't matter beside the point I"m not getting what I paid for but when making something like a Turning 20 it can create a problem.

  21. #21
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    When I buy FQ's at a show I open them up & carry my tape measure, I've gotten bad one's before too. CT will make them good if you call them, there usually good with there cuts.

  22. #22
    Junior Member time2quilt's Avatar
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    I'm doing a baby quilt where the recipient supplied the fabric. She is not a quilter/sewer, but went to a very reputable quilt shop and bought fat quarters. I echo what you are saying. The pattern required that I use almost all of the fat quarter and in a couple of cases, the fat quarters were too small to get what I needed. Very sad that prices keep going up and we aren't even getting what we pay for.
    Tough times don't last, tough people do.

  23. #23
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    CT has always given me generous cuts! Just like Peckish, I ordered 20 FQs and received 23. I also go to the only LQS in my area, and have to watch the cutter like a hawk. She pulls the fabric very tight as she measures and cuts! When I measure at home, I'm always an inch or more short! Then swear I will never set foot in her shop again. But as a fabric addict, the smell and feel of new fabric is too powerful to resist!!!

  24. #24
    Super Member leatheflea's Avatar
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    Agree that they can be disapointing. Its buying someone elses scrap. When buying them I try not to count on them being the right size. In my opinion all precuts are this way. Once in a blue moon they'll be that one generous piece that restores our faith, so we buy more!
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 12-27-2012 at 06:30 AM. Reason: language

  25. #25
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    I like shops that tear the fabric. This way you get what you pay for.

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