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RE: backing fabric cut or torn??????

RE: backing fabric cut or torn??????

Old 03-21-2011, 11:52 AM
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Was just reading the above mentioned post and replies. I have been quilting, sewing since 1963 and I have NEVER torn a piece of fabric. So, what is the proper way to do this? Is there a lot of waste? Is one way better than another? Inquiring minds (and probably not only mine!) need to know! Thanks for setting me "straight"! NO pun intended!! lol !
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Old 03-21-2011, 12:11 PM
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I like to tear to get straight of grain you loose an inch of fabric but to me that is less of a big deal than a crooked cut where you lose 6 or more sometimes.
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Old 03-21-2011, 12:13 PM
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To tear a fabric , make a small snip in the salvage edge enough to cut past the salvage , take a side of the snipped fabric in each hand and tear completley to the other salvage. It will tear along the grain of the fabric. It can be quite surprising how off grain many cuts can be!
I always tear a backing fabric that way it will lay straight. It also helps reduce puckering. If you have a backing off grain , you will be sewing with a slight bias. It also squares off the edge so you have two good corners to start when you do the layering.
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:41 PM
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The process of tearing stretches the fabric slightly off grain, also. Running it through a rinse cycle in the washer usually shakes it back into place; I like to hang dry after a slow spin.
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:44 PM
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I have found that tearing doesn't always give 90 degree corners. I prefer cutting.
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:58 PM
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Some say you should never tear on the cross-wise grain because of the stretch and distortion. Tearing on the lengthwise grain, as is done for borders, is much more accurate.
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:58 PM
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I always tear my backing, too. I figure it is the only way that I am ever going to get it straight.
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Old 03-21-2011, 03:39 PM
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I will usually tear my backing fabrics to make sure that they are straight!
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Old 03-21-2011, 03:52 PM
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Originally Posted by borntoquilt
Was just reading the above mentioned post and replies. I have been quilting, sewing since 1963 and I have NEVER torn a piece of fabric. So, what is the proper way to do this? Is there a lot of waste? Is one way better than another? Inquiring minds (and probably not only mine!) need to know! Thanks for setting me "straight"! NO pun intended!! lol !
I prefer to tear stuff. Sometimes it's been shipped out of kilter and needs to be washed then tugged on to even up.

I wish more stores would tear fabric. Nothing makes me madder than buying a yard of fabic then losing a quarter yard because it's not square.
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Old 03-21-2011, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by quilttiludrop
I have found that tearing doesn't always give 90 degree corners. I prefer cutting.
If the corners aren't 90 degrees, dampen the fabric, tug on it on the diagional and it will usually get back to being square.
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