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Cutting The Curves // Retro Rubies QAL

This is week three of the Retro Rubies Quilt Along. Some of you may be just joining us, but you are not too late! You can stop by the Retro Rubies QAL page, to see a list of all the posts to date. Also If you haven't stopped by the flickr group I encourage you to do so.

Creating Templates


There are a few different ways to create templates for cutting. You could use regular paper, thick card stock, or even plastic templates. I use this size quarter circle template quite often, so I decided to create plastic templates. You can purchase sheets of heavy weight plastic at Joann's for $4.99/ea in the quilting section. Just trace your template from the back of the magazine onto the plastic and cut it out with craft scissors.

Cutting the Fabric


Before you begin cutting the fabric be sure to starch and press it (see the starching video tutorial). Here is a starching tip for curves… heavily starch the fabric that you will be using for the inner curves and mildly starch the fabric you plan to use for the outer curves. You want the inner curves to be pretty stiff, and the outer curves to have structure, but still flexible. You can cut more than one piece of fabric at a time if you starch and press each layer of fabric together.


When cutting curves it may seem un-natural to use a rotary cutter as opposed to scissors, but I strongly suggest a rotary (the smaller the blade the better). Make sure to use a fresh new rotary blade. For right handers cut your inner curves starting on the bottom cutting up/left, and for left handers cut starting on the bottom cutting up/right.

How many to cut?


How many curves and rectangles you cut will depend completely on what size quilt you want to make. Reference the instructions in the magazine and if you would like to make a throw size quilt double the amount in the instructions.

Featured Sponsor

Marmalade Fabrics is dedicated to providing modern fabric to quilters & artists. They carry a variety of modern fabric from diverse manufacturers as well as fun and modern patterns. They have a HUGE selection of solid fabrics and wonderful basic color bundles.



Marmalade Fabrics is giving away a 42 piece 10" layer cake of  Simply Color to one lucky Pile O’ Fabric reader. This giveaway is open to all readers even if you are just following along and not sewing along.

First Step To Enter To Win…

The first step to enter the giveaway is to leave a blog post comment telling me what your favorite step of making a quilt is.

For Bonus Entries

This giveaway will end Friday, May 17th, at 12 a.m. EST. Mr. Random will choose two winners and I will announce their name Friday on Facebook and Twitter and I will email the winner directly. a Rafflecopter giveaway Now get to working cutting into those precious fabrics!

    Post Comments

  • Sarah Schraw says...

    Love, love, love the beginning: choosing fabrics and designing. But nothing really compares to the excitement of finishing the top! Stitching on the binding is super satisfying as well.

    My LEAST favorite part is half way through making blocks, when the real hard work and determination have to set in…

    On August 20, 2014

  • Kris says...

    I have favorite moments in the quilt process. I am so happy when the cutting is done. I am really happy when the piecing is done and the quilting but I really like it when the binding is done. :)

    On August 20, 2014

  • pkmegs says...

    My favorite step is when I start piecing, I love watching the quilt come together.

    On August 20, 2014

  • L says...

    Not sure what my favorite is—probably when I’m first starting a new step! (E.g., the first five blocks I piece in a quilt are thrilling, the 45th is tedious)

    On August 20, 2014

  • Michele says...

    I like picking the fabrics and then the pressing when you get to make your seams look nice and see how the pieces are coming together.

    On August 20, 2014

  • susan hilsenbeck says...

    My favorite part of the process is design.

    On August 20, 2014

  • pkmegs says...

    My favorite step is the start of piecing, I love watching the fabrics come together and see the quilt develop.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Melissa says...

    My favorite step is the planning it out process, picking out the fabrics and making sure everything will look good together.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Joelle says...

    I think cutting and piecing are my favorite parts but I spend a lot of time thinking about quilts so maybe that’s my favorite part.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Marci Girl says...

    My favorite part changes all the time, if you had asked a few months ago, I would have said planning/cutting, but now it is quilting!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Melissa K says...

    I love piecing and binding. I like to have something to work on by hand so when I get to the binding step it’s nice to be able to sit down with my family and work on it.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Lisa McGriff says...

    My favorite step is piecing! I love it!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Christine Sherman says...

    I actually love the binding. It means I am almost done!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Brittney G. says...

    I think my favorite step is piecing together the first block – when you start to see the idea in your head come alive!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Lisa says...

    I think designing is my favorite part. I just love picking out all the fabric I want to use or choosing a quilt design to show off the fabric.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Stephanie A says...

    My favorite part is picking out the fun fabrics & trimming off the excess after it’s been quilted!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Myrth mcDonald says...

    I love it when you get a few squares done and up on be design wall and can begin to see how the quilt will come together.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Fran says...

    My favorite part seems to vary from quilt to quilt. Most of the time my favorite part is piecing the quilt top. I love seeing the pieces come together. I also enjoy hand biding and quilting. My least favorite is cutting.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Karen Wills says...

    My favorite part of quilting is the planning process and choosing the fabrics.

    On August 20, 2014

  • KellyS says...

    My favorite step is the planning and choosing the fabric. Too many quilts haven’t gotten past this stage though, and I have a ton of fabric to prove it! LOL

    On August 20, 2014

  • Abby West says...

    My favorite part is finishing, so I can say I accomplished something.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Bess B says...

    I love shipping for the fabric and I love doing the binding at the end:)

    On August 20, 2014

  • charlotte m. says...

    I love the planning stage best and the binding and labeling stage second best. That means the quilt is done.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Jenni says...

    I love hand sewing, which usually means the binding, sometimes quilting!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Michelle Hudak says...

    My favorite part is picking a pattern and fabric

    On August 20, 2014

  • Jenniffier says...

    The planning process and then we the top is coming together and you can see all the progress made.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Margaret says...

    My favorite part is piecing. I love seeing it all come together.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Susan says...

    My favorite step is choosing the fabrics!!!!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Monique Belmer says...

    Piecing it all together!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Isa says...

    The part I like most is really planning the quilt, before I realize that the fabrics that looked great together on the store no longer seem to go together and start seeing seams that don’t align and having to correct a bunch of blocks,

    On August 20, 2014

  • Jennifer Thompson says...

    My favorite part is when my fabrics are picked and placed and I’m ready to sew, thanks!

    On August 20, 2014

  • robin says...

    machine piecing is my favorite part. :)

    On August 20, 2014

  • Cristina says...

    My favorite part is the fabric selection, and to have it finished of course :)

    On August 20, 2014

  • Marie says...

    Choosing the fabric is always a favorite

    On August 20, 2014

  • Lani says...

    I think my favorite part of making quilts is the piecing. I second guess myself on everything else and the piecing is relaxing to me.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Ginny G. says...

    I am a new sewer, and am just starting to learn to piece blocks, so I haven’t gotten to a favorite spot yet. I am hoping that will happen soon. :) Thanks for the chance to win!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Judy Hudgins says...

    I love the planning stage, selecting the fabrics to match the pattern.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Archie the wonder dog says...

    I love all the parts apart from tacking the layers and squaring up before adding the binding but I think my favourite parts are hand piecing and quilting.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Courtney Elwell says...

    My fave part is piecing. Thanks!!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Andi says...

    My favorite parts are choosing fabrics and rotary cutting my pieces. Pressing can be fun now too I recently bought a cordless iron.

    You also can’t forget the moment you pick it up from being quilted (I don’t do it myself). It’s fun seeing your top transformed into something you will cherish forever.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Jill Blissenbach says...

    My favorite parts are planning and piecing, sometimes the quilting :)

    On August 20, 2014

  • Kathy says...

    I love the initial process of choosing fabrics, and then piecing them together!

    On August 20, 2014

  • Kathy says...

    I follow you o BlogLovin’

    On August 20, 2014

  • Kathy says...

    Pick one step as my favorite? Impossible. I love the dreaming and planning and fabric selection. I even love cutting (and especially te fussy cutting). Piecing is exciting as I see the fabrics come together. And the quilting process adds yet another dimension, another change to the appearance of my qiilt Binding is the crowning jewel and the label tells this story.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Mary says...

    I think the best part is seeing a block come together perfectly on the first try. All sections aligned in perfect symmetry. Then on to the next, hoping I can repeat the process.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Kelly Caufield says...

    To be quite honest I have yet to make a quilt as I am so new to sewing and I’m wanting to make a quilt so my next project I’m going to endeavor towards making my first quilt because my Spouse’s grandmother said she would help me!!!! :) I’m really excited been wanting to do this now forever!!! :)

    On August 20, 2014

  • Corinne says...

    I just love your blog!! I love to piece and sew my quilts, I hate to cut the fabric.

    On August 20, 2014

  • Terry says...

    My favorite part is picking out the pattern, and then the fabrics, and then thirdly, seeing what it will actually look like as the blocks start going together. It’s such a process!

    On August 20, 2014

  • barbara says...

    Actually i have two favorites. I love hand piecing. Watching a quilt come together and knowing i created it, is such an awesome feeling. And hand quilting. Seeing all those stitches of love gives me peace

    On August 20, 2014

  • Libby H says...

    Planning which fabrics to use and matching them to the pattern. Thanks for the chance!

    On August 20, 2014

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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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