1. we are getting just a little closer to a finished quilt
2. we are getting just a little closer to spring!
I can feel good about both of those things!
Here's what we have done so far:
week one: choosing and preparing your fabrics
If you want more information about what is going on, please scroll through these posts. Feel free to join in at any time!
Please remember to post your photos in the flickr group!
This week is the week to cut our fabrics. If you are new to using a rotary cutter, take your time at first until you get the feel for it. Once you get going on this step you will get done quickly. If you are a beginner please read through this post thoroughly before you start.
We will be cutting 100 7-1/2"X 3-1/2" rectangles from the print fabrics and 100 3-1/2" X 3-1/2" squares from your neutral fabric.
Let's work with our print fabrics first (the 1/3 yard pieces). In order to get a straight edge you will need to make tear down one side of each fabric piece.
Make a small cut on one of the cut edges (a 1/4 inch cut about 1/2 inch into your fabric). Then start tearing. This sounds a bit scary, but it won't hurt anything:
After you tear all the way down the edge your fabric should look like this:
We need to trim that fluffy stuff off! Take your fabric and fold it twice lengthwise. In the photo the torn edge is under the ruler. Now I want you to take your fabric and place it on the mat. Place your ruler 1/4"-1/2" over the cut edge:
Now place firm pressure on your ruler with your left hand. Using your rotary cutter, apply firm pressure and cut from the bottom to the top of the fabric. Your cut should go through all of the layers. If it doesn't, just try again with a little more pressure.
The left cut edge of your fabric should be nice and straight and free of fluff:
Now we are going to cut a 7-1/2 inch strip. Place your cut fabric edge on the left side of your mat (even with the first line on the mat). Make sure it is nice and straight. Now place the left edge of your ruler on the 1-1/2 inch line of your mat. The right edge of the ruler should be on the 7-1/2 inch line. Take a moment to check that everything is in the right place and then make your cut on the 7-1/2" line:
Here is what you should have. The piece on the left will be used for the rectangles and the piece on the right goes in your quilt stash:
Now you will need to unfold your 7-1/2" strip and lay it out along your mat. Please note that the length of the fabric will be running left to right on your mat. Lay the fabric even with one of the lines on your mat. In order to make a straight edge you will be to cut a 1/2" piece off of the left side:
For these 3-1/2" cuts you can use the ruler by itself for measuring. Place the ruler over your fabric and measure 3-1/2":
Make your cut. You should end up with a 7-1/2" X 3-1/2" rectangle:
All you need to do is to cut 100 more rectangles and you will be set with your prints. This won't take as long is it sound like it will!
Now grab your neutral fabric piece. You are going to make that same cut and tear all along one of the cut edges:
Fold your fabric and measure 1/4"-1/2" along one cut edge:
Now you want to measure 3-1/2" into the fabric:
Make your cut:
With your fabric straight along one of the lines on your mat, lay out your piece of fabric with the length running from left to right on your mat. Cut a 1/2" piece off of the left edge to make a straight edge:
This is what you should be seeing:
Now measure 3-1/2" into your fabric piece:
Make your cut:
Do this until you have 100 squares. You should be feeling pretty confident by now with the rotary cutter!
When you are done you should have some lovely piles of fabric!
Next week these squares and rectangles are going to work their way into a gorgeous quilt top. You will be surprised at how lovely they look when they gather together!