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Cutting you Fabric - Totally Groovy QAL

This post is part of the Totally Groovy Quilt Along. Click here to see all of the posts and learn more about the Quilt Along.

This is week three of the Totally Groovy Quilt Along. Some of you may be just joining us, but you are not too late! You can stop by the Totally Groovy QAL Page, to see a list of all the posts to date and the current giveaway. Also If you haven't stopped by the flickr group I encourage you to do so. I do want to make a note about posting photos in the flickr group, we have been sharing our process and that includes any changes we plan to make to the pattern, and piecing methods which is great. But, I do ask out of respect for the wonderful designer Emily and copyright, that we try not to post any close up or super clear photos of the Pattern. If you need a pattern it can be ordered at Carolina Patchworks and using discount code GROOVEPAPER or GROOVEPDF to get a 15% discount.

Cutting your Fabric

Some of you may still be waiting on your fabric to arrive, but no worries! I have worked ahead to be able to prepare these posts, and It really is much easier than I expected and I think we will have a nice lengthy time to complete the quilt. Today we will begin cutting into our fabric.

Since I have two little ones (3yr old and 5 month old) the best time for me to work on my sewing projects is nap time and after the family is asleep. So before I began I got the kiddos in bed, a nice glass of ice water, Pandora music on, and new rotary blades installed. I was ready to get my Cutting Groove on.

I am a starch happy quilter, so before I began cutting I made sure to starch and press all of my yardage.

I took my paper Groove pattern, and I made a black and white photo copy of the cutting charts, and colored each column A, B, C, D, E with my groove colors to help keep me on track as I was cutting.

Cutting your Rectangles and Squares

So now lets look at the cutting chart on your pattern. First look at the Cutting Chart: Rectangles and Squares. Lets say your making a crib size quilt. There is a row that says first cut. The first cut is when you will be cutting 3 1/2" x Width of Fabric (WOF) strips. So in color A cut 7 - 3 1/2" strips, color B 3 - 3 1/2" strips, and so on.

I started with my first color and cut all the strips I would need for my rectangles and squares, and then the strips I would need for my curves. I stacked these in piles by color with the strips for the curves separated on top. Once you have all those strips cut and stacked in your piles. You will move on to your second cuts.

Make sure to cut your selvages off. Then take your first color strip and follow the Second Cut instructions on your pattern. For a crib size quilt in color "A" you will first cut a 33 1/2" piece and set it aside.

I labeled all of my pieces with sticky notes. This will really help keep everything organized for when you layout your quilt.

After you have cut the 33 1/2" piece you will be left with a 10 1/2" piece. So look at column "A" and find out what the next size piece you will need that is smaller than 10 1/2", in this case it is 6 1/2" (label and set aside). That will now leave you with a 4" piece, which you can then cut a 3 1/2" piece from (label and set aside). You will be left with a 1/2" scrap.

Continue to cut the pieces for color "A" in this manner until you have cut them all. As I cut I checked off my pieces on my pattern to make sure I had everything. I set all my piles aside with there labels by color. I did have a few 3 1/2" strips left over extra, when I was done cutting my rectangles and squares.

Cutting your Curves

Now lets look at the cutting chart: Curves. You will need your 3 1/2" strips you set aside for curves now.

There are a lot of different template method's for cutting your curve pieces. You may like to use card-stock, template plastic, a die cutter like Accu-Quilt. Whichever method you use you want to measure your templates and make sure they are a perfect 3 1/2".

I printed my template out on Card-Stock and traced them with a water-soluble marking pen onto my strips.

I then carefully and slowly cut them out with my rotary cutter. If you have a smaller rotary like a 28mm or 18mm this is the time to use it. Since you are dealing with the bias you will need to be careful when cutting. The fabric may try to pucker and shift.

Follow your chart and cut out the appropriate number of inner and outer curves in each color.

Be sure to really take your time when cutting and do not rush. The more accurate your cutting is the more accurate your quilt will be! I also encourage you to read through the entire pattern before you begin cutting.

Laying out your Quilt

Once I was done will all of my cutting, I began to layout my quilt on my design wall using the diagram. I started in the left hand corner Row 1, Row 2 and so on.

For my design wall I have vinyl table cloth, with a flannel backing hanging on a curtain rod, backwards flannel side facing out. Since my wall is a bit narrower than the Lap Size Groovy Quilt I had to over lap my pieces some.

If you do not have a design wall, I would suggest that you put the pieces together by row into piles and labeling each pile with the Row #. That way you will have easy access to the pile when you begin sewing.

Featured Groovy Event Sponsor

Featured Groovy Event Sponsor

Canton Village Quilt Works

Meet Jackie Kunkel of Canton Village Quilt Works, Jackie has been a quilter for 18 years, in business for 12, designing for about 2.5 years for magazines, and has taught classes over the last 18 years as well. She produces a quilting podcast called Jackie's Quilting Chronicles which can be found in iTunes. She has been a long arm quilter for 12 years. Designing quilts for Quilt Magazine for 2.5 years and now also for Windham Fabrics. Jackie is also a Certified Judy Niemeyer designs Teacher. You can visit Jackie's online shop for a beautiful selection of Batiks, Kona Cotton, and more.

Groovy Giveaway

Groovy Giveaway

Jackie at Canton Village Quilt Works is giving away a $25 gift certificate to 2 lucky winners for the Canton Village Quilt Works online shop.

Enter to Win

Here's how, using the Rafflecopter widget below, follow the step by step instructions. First step is to add a comment to this post and tell me what method you like to use to cut out pattern templates. (using card-stock and tracing, plastic templates, Accu-Quilt, etc.)

This giveaway will end Thursday, August 23rd, at 12 a.m. EST. Mr. Random will choose a winner and I will announce their name on the Giveaway Winners page, later that Thursday. * Note * This giveaway is open to EVERYONE near and far! If you're a "no reply" or an anonymous commenter, remember to include your email address in your comment so that if you win I can contact you!

For Bonus Entries

  • Subscribe to the Canton Village Quilt Works Newsletter
  • Subscribe to the Pile O' Fabric RSS Email's

ENTER NOW with Rafflecopter Widget

For the next three weeks we will be learning all about curve piecing. Piecing with pins, without pins, and with a curve master presser foot. We will be talking about putting our whole quilt top together on September 13th so you have plenty of time to try out these different curve piecing methods. So I encourage you to sit back learn and just enjoy this Groovy process!


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Alyssa Lichner from Pile O' Fabric

Welcome to the Pile O’ Fabric blog, my name is Alyssa Lichner, I live in sunny Gilbert, AZ. I am a freelance web and graphic designer turned avid sewist. I write modern quilting tutorials and share techniques and inspiration here at Pile O’ Fabric… Read More

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