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#1 of 18 Old 07-09-2009, 05:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm horrible at it. Some how I just can't cut in a straight line with scissors, so even receiving blankets and rags look all wonky when I work with them. I'm thinking that getting cutting mat and rotary blade would make straight lines better at least. The sets I've seen are pretty expensive, though.

In your experience, does a cutting mat make doing straight line exponentially easier?

Or do I need to stick with the scissors and go back to remedial preschool?

Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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#2 of 18 Old 07-09-2009, 07:05 PM
 
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I don't have an answer for you but I an anxiously awaiting the response since I am in the same boat. I cannot cut a straight line or even close to save my life. I have been considering a rotary cutter but like you said they are so $$.

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#3 of 18 Old 07-09-2009, 07:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I hope we get a response too. belive it or not, I can pretty much sew in a straight line. I have the really cute flannel that I had hoped to make into a baby blanket, but I'm scared to cut it! All the bloggers seem to use rotary cutters.

I wish you were in texas Kristin-- I'd go halfsies with you on a set.

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#4 of 18 Old 07-09-2009, 07:27 PM
 
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Try getting one of those 40% off coupons from Hobby Lobby or JoAnn's and see if you can get a set that way.

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#5 of 18 Old 07-09-2009, 07:32 PM
 
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Oh good idea I had a 40% off coupon with me today and forgot to use it. Maybe I'll use it non the cutter. But what a bummer they were on sale last weekend 50% off! I just wasn't sure if it would help.

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#6 of 18 Old 07-09-2009, 09:21 PM
 
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A rotary cutter and mat can make cutting straight lines easier but you will also need an acrylic ruler. Here's a pictorial on how to use one: http://www.sewingweb.com/Projects/RotaryCutting/

A small cutter will cut curves better than a large cutter (there are 3 sizes by the way) and can cut pattern out. But that's done free hand like using a pair of scissors. But cutting takes practice. Start out practicing with paper scissors cutting on lines on paper. Then progress to cutting straight on paper without lines. Then switch to fabric and bent handled fabric shears (either 7" or 8" is good). http://sewing.about.com/od/beginner1...ker-Shears.htm As the website says, only use them on fabric.

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#7 of 18 Old 07-09-2009, 10:04 PM
 
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Hmmm... well, wait until they go 50% off and then combine it with your homeschool coupons at Joanns and you can get a great rotary set. Y'all are inspiring me to actually use the rotary cutters I bought that way. I cheaped out and bought a teeny weeny mat, though.
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#8 of 18 Old 07-10-2009, 12:52 PM
 
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When I need to cut straight lines, I use DH's Drywall T Square (or a yardstick and the edge of my table) and mark the line lightly on the fabric and then cut.

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#9 of 18 Old 07-10-2009, 01:03 PM
 
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There's definitely a learning curve to rotary cutting, but it can help improve your straight line cutting. Also a good sharp pair of dressmaker shears are nice. I know it can seem expensive, but just think of it as the right tool for the job.

Sabrina , mom to 4 fab kids!

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#10 of 18 Old 07-11-2009, 11:08 AM
 
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I swear by my cutting mat and ruler! I love how I can now whip up quick projects like wipes or tote bags without having to use patterns.
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#11 of 18 Old 07-11-2009, 11:46 AM
 
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I haven't used my scissors much since I got a mat and rotary cutter. I have a 45mm cutter and it is good for everything I want to cut.

If you can't cut straight have you tried drawing lines on your fabric to follow? Or a line of pins?

To cut squares and rectangles you can use your measuring tape to mark the distance from your selvage to where you want to cut and slide a pin in move down a few inches and do the same until you have your shape outlined in pins then just cut along that line.
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#12 of 18 Old 07-14-2009, 07:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orangefoot View Post
I haven't used my scissors much since I got a mat and rotary cutter. I have a 45mm cutter and it is good for everything I want to cut.

If you can't cut straight have you tried drawing lines on your fabric to follow? Or a line of pins?

To cut squares and rectangles you can use your measuring tape to mark the distance from your selvage to where you want to cut and slide a pin in move down a few inches and do the same until you have your shape outlined in pins then just cut along that line.
I guess my problem is-- how do you know that the line that you are drawing is straight? I guess I need something to measure a 90 degree angle from the selvedge?

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#13 of 18 Old 07-14-2009, 09:44 PM
 
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Get to know your grainline.
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#14 of 18 Old 07-15-2009, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E.V. Lowi View Post
Get to know your grainline.
off to google. I used to 'sew' a little when I was a teen-- I think I was just much less of a perfectionist back then.

Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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#15 of 18 Old 07-15-2009, 12:11 PM
 
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That's why I suggested a T square - you can put the top of the T at the selvage of your fabric and the line comes down, nice and perpendicular.

If you don't have a T square, you can lay your fabric selvage against the edge of your table, and put a yardstick down, making sure it is exactly perpendicular to the edge of the table (and therefore your fabric).

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#16 of 18 Old 07-16-2009, 12:52 AM
 
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I just visited my great-aunt who has been quilting for over twenty years and she hasn't used scissors for cutting since they invented the rotary cutter! She showed me a few quiliting techniques so I got to try her cutter and wow. What a difference. I'm getting a mat and cutter as soon as I can, have already got the acrylic ruler.
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#17 of 18 Old 07-16-2009, 06:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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yes, the T-square would totally take care of the issue-- or even a quilting ruler.

I've made a deal with myself-- if I can stay off the frenchfries for a week, I'll get my self a ruler, cutter, and mat set. I'm still keeping an eye on craigslist, though.

Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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#18 of 18 Old 07-17-2009, 02:11 AM
 
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I don't know what I'd do without my rotary cutter. Sewing would be soooo much more difficult and frustrating. My set-up includes a rotary cutter, large self-healing mat (with grid lines) and a lip-edge ruler.

It can be a bit pricey to get started, but I promise you'll never regret the purchase.

SAHM to DD (6/07) and DS (10/09); happily married to DH since 2/04 .
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