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Thread: Stacking fabrics then rotary cutting...

  1. #1
    Senior Member blzzrdqueen's Avatar
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    I'm starting a the Crazy Eights pattern and it tells me to make the cutting go faster, to stack my fat quarters 4 thick then cut. I notice that when I do that, my squares/patches are not accurate...am I doing something wrong?

  2. #2
    Power Poster erstan947's Avatar
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    I have never mastered that stack cutting. I usually stick with 2. I'm usually not in any hurry. I enjoy the whole process:)

  3. #3
    Super Member bamamama's Avatar
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    Need to change the blade your rotary cutter maybe? I stack em really high sometimes but I change my blade often.

  4. #4
    Senior Member ddrobins1956's Avatar
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    I've seen this advice in patterns also, but, for me, I know that I can not be accurate of I stack more than a double thickness. And I've found that cutting accurately is very important to the outcome of a nice block with seams matching and points not getting lost in seam allowance. I'm sure there are quilters that can cut 4 or more thicknesses and stay accurate, but it doesn't work for me.

  5. #5
    Super Member quiltinghere's Avatar
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    In my experience I need a the larger rotary cutter and a sharp blade. Wear a cut proof glove, press down firmly on the ruler and make sure your perpendicular to the ruler (not slanting).

  6. #6
    Senior Member blzzrdqueen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bamamama
    Need to change the blade your rotary cutter maybe? I stack em really high sometimes but I change my blade often.
    I actually have a new blade on my cutter, I changed the blade right before I started cutting. After the first few cuts, I started cutting my strips just a tad bigger so I can just trim the pieces down.

  7. #7
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    To cut 4 layers you need a larger rotary cutter and a new blade and they cut just fine.

  8. #8
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    I use the biggest rotary cutter for more than 2 layers. I think it's 60 mm.

  9. #9
    Super Member cherylynne's Avatar
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    I've stacked and it works great, but if you make a bad cut you've made more than one mistake. I've had to change my plans because I was distracted and cut wrong.

  10. #10
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    Press the first piece of fabric, stack the second one on top and then press it, the third and fourth one too.
    Pressing them in this manner seems to make them stick to each other, and can make cutting through a stack more accurate. :D:D:D

  11. #11
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltinghere
    In my experience I need a the larger rotary cutter and a sharp blade. Wear a cut proof glove, press down firmly on the ruler and make sure your perpendicular to the ruler (not slanting).
    Ditto! I also use the June Taylor shape cutter for multiple long cuts.

  12. #12
    Super Member clem55's Avatar
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    the idea of cutting more than one or two layers scares me to death. I have found that starching and ironing them together does make it easier.

  13. #13
    Super Member Jill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amma
    Press the first piece of fabric, stack the second one on top and then press it, the third and fourth one too.
    Pressing them in this manner seems to make them stick to each other, and can make cutting through a stack more accurate. :D:D:D
    I do it the same way, also using a 60mm sharp blade.

  14. #14
    Super Member BKrenning's Avatar
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    Sharp blade, pressed fabric with sizing or starch & firm even pressure while cutting on a good hand strength day. On a bad day, I get out my Alto's Quilt Cut 2. That is exactly what it is made for. I don't have much luck using yardage in it but fat quarters & scraps work perfectly.

  15. #15
    Super Member sewwhat85's Avatar
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    it takes practice and some of my friends never could get it. Sharp blade and pressure on the ruler will help. Just cut what you are comfortable with and dont worry

  16. #16
    Super Member sewingladydi's Avatar
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    I starch and iron the fabrics together before I cut-seems to keep the fabric together better-no slipping. And I use the larger cutter

  17. #17
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    I guess I have always been lucky. When cutting yardage I always go through 4 layers and never had a problem. It never occurred to me to do less because I always double fold my fabric for storage. Maybe it is because this is the way I have always cut?

  18. #18
    Super Member quiltsRfun's Avatar
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    The most I can stack is three and then I still have trouble. I usually don't stack more than two. It may take longer to cut but it's worth spending more time to be accurate.

  19. #19
    Super Member sewdarnbusy's Avatar
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    I never cut more than 4 layers... if you want it accurate, stick to 2 layers.

  20. #20
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    it is also important to line up for your cuts on the same side of the lines. Are you using the lines on the cutting mat. If so this is not always accurate. Be sure and have some grippers on your ruler so it won't slip. cut a section and then holding the ruler securely inch worm your hands up so the cut won't slip. I find that the last 1/2" sometimes slips so do carefully. And regardless of what the pattern says - only cut what you can accurately manage.

  21. #21
    Junior Member SandyQuilter's Avatar
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    Only stack two at a time. While some quilters stack more layers, the lower two tend to shift. Shifting only a few threads will throw off your sizing. AND that is important to having accurate patches. Adding several threads across a quilt will magnify the size of the blocks. And because of bias, the enlargement is not necessarily the same around all edges of any patch. So it's more accurate to limit the number of fabric layers.

    Sandy

  22. #22
    Super Member Central Ohio Quilter's Avatar
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    I have never cut more than 2 layers at a time. I could not imagine getting really accurate cuts with any more.

  23. #23
    Senior Member carolstickelmaier's Avatar
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    If you are not on a firm surface you will get a "wonky" cut. I learned the hard way when I cut a "stack" on my drapery pinning table with horse hair padding..The rest of the responses are good ones also

  24. #24
    Super Member pumpkinpatchquilter's Avatar
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    I think the trick is a combination of good pressing, a little starch or best press, careful stacking, a nice sharp rotary blade and a good and accurate ruler (Creative Grids is just one of the brands I really like right now). I usually don't stack more than 3 layers at a time, but know ladies who bravely stack 4. I find even with a new blade you can get some skipping and wonky edges with 4 layers. ;) Good luck to you!

  25. #25
    Senior Member Moon Holiday's Avatar
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    Two things that really helped me: Spray starch the fabric and stack them together while they are slightly damp, then press (not iron) them dry.
    Whenever I want to cut several layers of fabric at one time, if I starch and stack this way, the fabric doesn't shift. And of course, be sure you have a good blade in your rotary cutter.

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