Brightening Life with Creativity,
one day at a time...
For my latest project idea, I decided to cut some circles. So, I went through my options:
I have one of those specialty rulers to cut circles. You know the ones I am talking about. You have to fold the fabric and then place the ruler on top with the bottom lined up on the fold. Then you use a small rotary cutter in the slot to cut a half circle. Move the ruler aside and presto! You have a circle! Well at least you're supposed to have a circle. What I normally end up with is a "pretty good" circle with these little pointy tips at the fold mark on either side! :-)
Then there's always the "trace around something" method. But that involves the extra step of tracing and then if you need to make some more later, you have to remember what you traced around. :-)
Other options could include using a compass and cutting out a template and pinning it in place and cutting around it with scissors, or a die cut machine, but I don't have one of those and plus the sizes are somewhat limited.
Well, remember the Oval Templates? I noticed that Alto's also makes a Circle Cutter. Yes, it is originally for mat board as well, but I decided to try it out. My reasoning? If the Oval Templates worked with fabric, I bet the Circle Cutter would too. Plus, I liked the flexibility in cutting different sizes...everything from 1 inch to 33 inch diameter circles. Yes, you read that right....33 inches!
The picture below on the left, shows the Circle Cutter with the extension bar. The center "line" is actually filled with holes that you place the provided tack in that correspond to the diameter of the circle you want to cut. The picture below on the right shows a little more detail.
I tried it out on some different materials: Cut-Away Plus by Sulky, Kraft Tex by C & T Publishing, and fabric with double-sided fusible in place. I cut on top of the same piece of foam core, I used for the ovals. Here's what I came up with:
As you can see, I cut large circles and then sub-cut smaller circles to create rings, much like I did with the Oval Templates. (The largest circle I quickly free cut with a pair of scissors just to get started.)
It worked great!
But enough with the practice, and on to my project fabric!
I prepped my hand-dyed fabric with double-sided fusible web and put it on top of my foam core again.
Next, I placed the tack at the 2 1/2" mark and held it with my left hand, while I pushed the ball knob down and around with my right.
I actually got carried away and cut a few, before I remembered to take a picture! That's how easy it was! So here's one just after I cut it and the hole it left in the fabric.
Added bonus? it's ready for machine applique, thanks to the double-sided fusible!
So there you have it!
Circles are going to "roll" into my work a lot more often now! (Sorry, couldn't resist!) :-)
If you haven't had a chance to subscribe to my blog yet, I encourage you do so! That way, you can follow along to see what I do with all of these ovals and circles! Happy cutting!
Remember that quilt I started quite a while back called Pieceful Nights by Lori Smith? Well, I just finished the last two blocks for it and despite having LOTS of pieces they went together pretty easily. This time around, I was able to cut all of those little pieces using my new Quilt Cut 2 fabric cutting system! for those of you unfamiliar with the product, here's a picture:
I have only had my unit for a couple of weeks now and I'm still learning some of the "ins and outs", but I can tell you that it is fabulous! I was able to cut all of the pieces for the last two blocks easier, quicker and be more precise. What a great combination!
Here are some pictures I took while cutting out some of the pieces:
And here are the finished blocks! I still need to trim the threads, clip the dog ears and press them, but I couldn't wait to show you!
Even though a lot of "traditional" quilters use this cutting system, I plan on using it for my fiber art as well. So stay tuned for more pictures. In the mean time, if you are looking for a way to make your cutting more accurate and in my opinion, safer, consider the Quilt Cut 2. Their website has lots of great information and videos. I don't think you'll be disappointed!
Fiber artist, wife to a wonderful husband and mom to 2 awesome kids
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