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Thread: Poorly cut fat quarters

  1. #1
    community benefactor Conniequilts's Avatar
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    I'm just whining which is why I put this post here.

    Last night I was cutting fat quarters to do Chop and Sew. The squares are supposed to be 18 x 18. I miss cut the first fq so had to reduce them to 17 x 17. That didn't upset me much.

    What did upset is when I unfolded the next fat quarter and found it so poorly cut I almost did not get a 17 x 17 out of it.

    Aren't fat quarters suppose to be 18 x 22? Anyone else have this darn problem?

  2. #2
    Pam
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    Ouch, feeling your pain. While I do not cut fat quarters, I have a hard time folding it right (get little wrinkles), and then get those darn "dog legs". Annoying to say the least. I often have 3+ yard cuts that I am trying to just get a little off from, How are you supposed to do it? GRRRR....

  3. #3
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    I'm keep wondering why ALL quilt shops don't use the rotary cutter and rulers! I cringe when I see them using the measuring tape(that's on the table) and the crack in the table for cutting.....I don't blame you for being upset...

  4. #4
    mlaceruby's Avatar
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    I have had this problem in the past
    So when I cut FQ's I always do a little extra
    cut at 19"
    so if the fabric is not perfectly squared on the cutting board I know it is still the 18"

    but some fabrics are now going to 40" width so FQ would be 18x20

  5. #5
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    wonky measures are one reason i don't buy fat quarters for anything but stash-building.

    some sources will measure and cut exactly 18".
    that's fine. it's what was advertised and paid for. no grounds for complaint.
    problem is that even if it's a perfect rectangle, i won't have 18" usable inches once it's washed.

    i've received some that were 18" on one end, but less on the other. sooooo i didn't even start with 18 usable inches. :hunf:

    the list of boo-boos goes on.

    buying fats from a shop for the first time is a crapshoot. isn't that why they built Vegas? :lol:

    p.s. very happy to see that mlaceruby takes such care for her customers. :-) :thumbup:

    p.s.s. i'm pretty sure it doesn't happen on purpose. if fats are cut by hand, they may not be cut by quilters. we know to measure both side; measure twice; and then cut once. :lol:

  6. #6
    reach for the stars 2's Avatar
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    It's happen to me and yes they are suppose to be 18 x22.

  7. #7
    Super Member Tink's Mom's Avatar
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    I have received the same problem...whenever I sell fat quarters on Ebay, they are at least 19". I never want to hear of a complaint that they were shorted. I sometimes will sell what I call remnant's if they are only going to be 17 1/2".

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlaceruby
    but some fabrics are now going to 40" width so FQ would be 18x20
    I did not know this! Do you know why they are going narrower? Wow, that could change everything in the sewing world.
    :(

  9. #9
    mlaceruby's Avatar
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    Just like everything else getting smaller and paying more.
    1 lb coffee can is now 13 oz
    1 lb bacon is now 12 oz
    45" wide fabric is now 40"

  10. #10
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Everything is shrinking except me. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

  11. #11
    Super Member BonniFeltz's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear of your problems Connie. I don't think I've used fat quarters in a pattern. My fat quarters are usually just cut up for pieced work so it doesn't matter if it is a little off. I'll have to look more carefully at the fat quarters from now on.

  12. #12
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    I expect a FQ to be at least 18 inches long and at least 20 inches wide (half of the width of fabric)

    The LQS - Quilts on Plum Lane in Dade City, Florida, routinely cuts their FQs at least 19 inches long.

    That's about the only place I've bought FQs recently.

    The two FQs that I bought from Walmart recently were LONGER than 18 inches (yes, I did measure them correctly!)

  13. #13
    Super Member pab58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlehud
    Everything is shrinking except me. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
    :lol: :lol: :lol: I feel the same way!!! :lol: :lol: :lol:

  14. #14
    Super Member pab58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pam
    Ouch, feeling your pain. While I do not cut fat quarters, I have a hard time folding it right (get little wrinkles), and then get those darn "dog legs". Annoying to say the least. I often have 3+ yard cuts that I am trying to just get a little off from, How are you supposed to do it? GRRRR....
    Okay, I have a dumb question: what are "dog legs"? :oops:

  15. #15
    Pam
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    Okay, I have a dumb question: what are "dog legs"? :oops:[/quote]

    When you THINK you have the fabric folded correctly, you cut a strip and at every fold, it turns in a different direction, like a dog's leg.

  16. #16
    lazyquilter's Avatar
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    you get upset seeing them use sissors... I just about go across the cutting table now when I see one of them put a nick in the fabric and then prepare to rip it. I used to just stand there and cringe. But, now I figure... whoa, that's almost $10 a yard and I'll be darned if I'm taking home any fabric that is torn and it's on an angle..... One lady was quite annoyed me, but I just figured I had annoyed a lot more in my life, she has- to take a number. I wanted a full cut, not one that was ripped on an angle. Whoa... mommy get's fussy, time for dinner or ice cream.. not sure which one first...

    Blue

  17. #17
    community benefactor Conniequilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluestarmom
    you get upset seeing them use sissors... I just about go across the cutting table now when I see one of them put a nick in the fabric and then prepare to rip it. I used to just stand there and cringe. But, now I figure... whoa, that's almost $10 a yard and I'll be darned if I'm taking home any fabric that is torn and it's on an angle..... One lady was quite annoyed me, but I just figured I had annoyed a lot more in my life, she has- to take a number. I wanted a full cut, not one that was ripped on an angle. Whoa... mommy get's fussy, time for dinner or ice cream.. not sure which one first...

    Blue
    I believe in dessert first! Good for you for taking a stand against getting rippped off.

  18. #18
    Super Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conniequilts
    Quote Originally Posted by bluestarmom
    you get upset seeing them use sissors... I just about go across the cutting table now when I see one of them put a nick in the fabric and then prepare to rip it. I used to just stand there and cringe. But, now I figure... whoa, that's almost $10 a yard and I'll be darned if I'm taking home any fabric that is torn and it's on an angle..... One lady was quite annoyed me, but I just figured I had annoyed a lot more in my life, she has- to take a number. I wanted a full cut, not one that was ripped on an angle. Whoa... mommy get's fussy, time for dinner or ice cream.. not sure which one first...

    Blue
    I believe in dessert first! Good for you for taking a stand against getting rippped off.
    I love your pun!
    :lol: :lol:

  19. #19
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I never buy FQ, only 6-8-10 yd. cut unless I am buying remnants or end of the bolt. My Daughter does and uses them in scrappy quilts, never said if they were accurately cut or not.

  20. #20
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    please don't accuse shops of trying to cheat you if their standard practice is to tear fabric instead of cutting.

    (1) some people consider tearing to be a more accurate way of getting sections that are on the straight of grain at both ends. it's a more reliable way to ensure you have the same number of usable inches all the way across the WOF. i recently bought a sustantial stack of yardage from a very nice shop. when torn, the fabs looked a bit wonky. once washed, they came out of the dryer so nicely rectangular you'd have thought they were cut by a machine.
    (2) in the shop i used in my example, the owner tore generously, which means she added at least one extra inch, just in case, to each piece i bought. i suspect that most shops that tear do the same.
    (3) it's faster than cutting. at the Houston Quilt Festival two years ago, one world famous and highly respected shop was selling nearly all their fabs at a deeeeeeeeep discount. naturally, the lines were very long and their booth was very crowded. they tore everything unless a customer specifically asked them not to. i literally bought a suitcase full. not a short cut in the bunch.

    cut vs. tear is a personal preference. the choice has nothing at all to do with honesty vs. deception or laziness.

    all you have to do is state your preference at the table. too easy.

  21. #21
    Super Member mjsylvstr's Avatar
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    My problem was that my pattern for a runner used just FQ's and when the one FQ was not the right measurements, it really threw the whole thing off.......had to reduce the seam allowances.

    Woe was me !!!!!!

  22. #22
    Junior Member nantucketsue's Avatar
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    I have found the same problem. Even fq's from the same online shop have different sizes although they are advertised as being 22" x 18". (whch is cut from yardage). In the UK metric measurement is now more common so it should be more. Why they can't use rotary cutters for accuracy is beyond me. It is so annoying to find the edge is not straight and losing more than an inch to square it up.

  23. #23
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjsylvstr
    My problem was that my pattern for a runner used just FQ's and when the one FQ was not the right measurements, it really threw the whole thing off.......had to reduce the seam allowances.

    Woe was me !!!!!!
    yep. the same thing can happen with yardage. that's why i always buy extra. at least one extra of each.

    also, the pattern designer can't predict how much i'll waste on incorrect cuts. that's pretty bad considering i design all my own quilts. :lol:

  24. #24
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    since a fat quarter is cut by cutting a 1/2 yard of fabric (so should always be 18") then cutting the 1/2 yard piece in half along the fold one measurement is not always 22"...it depends on the width of the fabric, i have purchased fat quarters that were only 18" square...because the fabric on the bolt was only 36" wide...so, it can vary by a large amount. and then if you tend to pre-wash you will probably only ever have 16-17" of usable by the time you square up...if you really have to have fq's that are 18"x22" you are best off cutting your own out of yardage...that way you can start out larger to make up for shrinkage and squaring up.

  25. #25
    Super Member Grammy o'5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlehud
    Everything is shrinking except me. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
    LOL! Me too! :lol:

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