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One Quarter Inch vs "Scant" One Quarter Inch

One Quarter Inch vs "Scant" One Quarter Inch

Old 09-06-2010, 02:03 PM
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Hi, All ~ being new to quilting, this is probably just too simple, but when would one use a "scant" quarter-inch seam rather than the standard quarter inch? Only when the pattern calls for the scant quarter specifically? Thanks in advance for your input!
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Old 09-06-2010, 02:09 PM
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I'm kinda new to quilting too - but I think the scant 1/4" is used a lot with triangles (at least the little ones). I could be wrong, but mostly that's the only time I come across them is in a pattern using triangles.
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Old 09-06-2010, 02:18 PM
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Quilter's Cache uses a lot of scant quarter inches in their blocks. I would only use it if it's called for or if you find your blocks are coming out too small.
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Old 09-06-2010, 02:24 PM
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I have only been quilting for a year, so don't take my opinion too seriously. I have enough to worry about so I just use my quarter inch foot for all piecing and my tops are turning out fine. I try not to sweat the small stuff unless it really makes a difference! Happy Quilting!
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Old 09-06-2010, 02:34 PM
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The scant quarter inch is used to accomodate the minute space taken up by the fold when two pieces are sewn together. The accuracy of the finished piece is what is important. If a pattern uses 2" squares and you sew right on the 1/4" line and sew two together then depending on the weight of the fabric, the finished square might not be exactly 2" finished. This is why it is important to test your seam allowance at the beginning to assure the finished piece will be the accurate size. If you are sewing only squares then it is not important as long as the seams are consistent. Machine manufacturers all have a 1/4" foot but not all are created equal so it is best to test the foot.
If you take two strips each 2.5" wide and sew them together the results should be 4.5". If not, then one should adjust by moving the needle or other adjustment. Sometimes the size of the needle or the weight of the thread can effect the accuracy.
All these things should be done to make sure all pieces fit. Adjustment for accuracy is especially important if you are sewing triangles together and then to other shapes, rectangles to squares, etc etc.
Accurate piecing reduces the frustration in trying to fit pieces and blocks together.

The same rationale applies to which side of the marked line on your ruler. If you cut on the right side, the piece might not be accurate. It could be a "scant" less than what it should be. Add this "scant" to the full 1/4" seam could give major problems.
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Old 09-06-2010, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Holice
The scant quarter inch is used to accomodate the minute space taken up by the fold when two pieces are sewn together. The accuracy of the finished piece is what is important. If a pattern uses 2" squares and you sew right on the 1/4" line and sew two together then depending on the weight of the fabric, the finished square might not be exactly 2" finished. This is why it is important to test your seam allowance at the beginning to assure the finished piece will be the accurate size. If you are sewing only squares then it is not important as long as the seams are consistent. Machine manufacturers all have a 1/4" foot but not all are created equal so it is best to test the foot.
If you take two strips each 2.5" wide and sew them together the results should be 4.5". If not, then one should adjust by moving the needle or other adjustment. Sometimes the size of the needle or the weight of the thread can effect the accuracy.
All these things should be done to make sure all pieces fit. Adjustment for accuracy is especially important if you are sewing triangles together and then to other shapes, rectangles to squares, etc etc.
Accurate piecing reduces the frustration in trying to fit pieces and blocks together.

The same rationale applies to which side of the marked line on your ruler. If you cut on the right side, the piece might not be accurate. It could be a "scant" less than what it should be. Add this "scant" to the full 1/4" seam could give major problems.
That's basically what I wanted to say but too lazy to type it! :oops: That's great advice to follow!
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Old 09-06-2010, 03:34 PM
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Sometimes when sewing rows of triangles together, a scant 1/4" seam will determine whether or not you loose your points.
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Old 09-06-2010, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Holice
The scant quarter inch is used to accomodate the minute space taken up by the fold when two pieces are sewn together. The accuracy of the finished piece is what is important. If a pattern uses 2" squares and you sew right on the 1/4" line and sew two together then depending on the weight of the fabric, the finished square might not be exactly 2" finished. This is why it is important to test your seam allowance at the beginning to assure the finished piece will be the accurate size. If you are sewing only squares then it is not important as long as the seams are consistent. Machine manufacturers all have a 1/4" foot but not all are created equal so it is best to test the foot.
If you take two strips each 2.5" wide and sew them together the results should be 4.5". If not, then one should adjust by moving the needle or other adjustment. Sometimes the size of the needle or the weight of the thread can effect the accuracy.
All these things should be done to make sure all pieces fit. Adjustment for accuracy is especially important if you are sewing triangles together and then to other shapes, rectangles to squares, etc etc.
Accurate piecing reduces the frustration in trying to fit pieces and blocks together.

The same rationale applies to which side of the marked line on your ruler. If you cut on the right side, the piece might not be accurate. It could be a "scant" less than what it should be. Add this "scant" to the full 1/4" seam could give major problems.
You did a great job of explaining this.
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Old 09-06-2010, 04:08 PM
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I dont understand what you mean about cutting on the ruler side.
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Old 09-06-2010, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Holice
The scant quarter inch is used to accomodate the minute space taken up by the fold when two pieces are sewn together. The accuracy of the finished piece is what is important. If a pattern uses 2" squares and you sew right on the 1/4" line and sew two together then depending on the weight of the fabric, the finished square might not be exactly 2" finished. This is why it is important to test your seam allowance at the beginning to assure the finished piece will be the accurate size. If you are sewing only squares then it is not important as long as the seams are consistent. Machine manufacturers all have a 1/4" foot but not all are created equal so it is best to test the foot.
If you take two strips each 2.5" wide and sew them together the results should be 4.5". If not, then one should adjust by moving the needle or other adjustment. Sometimes the size of the needle or the weight of the thread can effect the accuracy.
All these things should be done to make sure all pieces fit. Adjustment for accuracy is especially important if you are sewing triangles together and then to other shapes, rectangles to squares, etc etc.
Accurate piecing reduces the frustration in trying to fit pieces and blocks together.

The same rationale applies to which side of the marked line on your ruler. If you cut on the right side, the piece might not be accurate. It could be a "scant" less than what it should be. Add this "scant" to the full 1/4" seam could give major problems.
Wow! Thank you for taking the time to give such a detailed response! You are awesome! Your post is going into my quilting advice notebook! Again, many thanks for helping a "new kid on the block" along the way!

:D
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