A very, very, VERY beginner sew along 4- cutting the fabric and a big apology

First for the apology.  If  you bought 45 inch wide fabric and you are making larger than a size ten you will probably need more fabric (cringe, as you throw your cyber tomatoes at me and boo me).  I am sorry!  I should have checked that all sizes would fit on the 1 1/2 yard length before I told you to go buy it.  If you bought 54 in wide fabric you should be fine.  I will show you a few options for laying out your pattern then you can decide what you need to do.  First lets talk about fabric

  • GREEN LINE- This is the Selvage of the fabric, it is the finished edge that runs the length of the bolt, it is also the lengthwise grain (grain is the direction the woven threads run).
  • BLUE LINE- This is the crosswise grain, it is the edge that is cut off the bolt when you buy fabric.
  • YELLOW LINE- This is the bias, it runs diagonally through both grains, the bias stretches.

So here is one option for laying out your pattern pieces, this will work for sizes four and six with 45-54 inch fabric.

So in this layout you want your crosswise grains to meet in the middle with your selvage along the edges.  Place the fold of both pieces along the fold of the fabric.  The arrows are supposed to run parallel to the grain line, they are just a general guide to help you make sure your pattern pieces are on there straight.

This next layout will work for sizes 8-10

In this layout you want to fold the selvage towards the middle just enough to fit the shoulder and back piece on the fold.  After you cut out the shoulder and back piece you will need to take the piece in the aqua colored square and fold that in half.  Then place the front pattern piece on the fold and cut.

If you need to cut size larger than a 10 you will probably need more fabric, but play around with the fabric you already have,  you may be able to fit something I couldn’t.  To know how much more fabric you need take your front piece and measure it from the top to the bottom along the fold line, this will be how much more you need.  The fabric you currently have will be enough for the shoulder and back piece.

If you have 54 inch fabric you should be able to fit it how the pattern print out shows with the selvage piece meeting in the middle and the pattern pieces on the folds, sorry I don’t have a picture of that, if this doesn’t make sense let me know and I will lay it out and take a picture.

Now for cutting.  Usually when I cut I pin my pattern  pieces to my fabric, but it is hard to pin through printer paper and have everything stay smooth.  So what I do in this instance is used some weights, namely canned food.  So lay out your pattern and place some cans on the corners.

Now find the line with your corresponding number and cut carefully following that line, if the cans get in the way move them over a little bit.

I am making this one for my daughter so I am cutting on the size 4 line.  Cut out both your pieces.  Before you remove your pattern paper we need to notch our markings.

On both pattern pieces you will see two small circles.  These circles will show us where to gather our fabric when we are sewing.  So you want to mark it will a small snip of your scissors.  Make sure you only snip to the edge of the circle.  You do NOT want a big cut here.  After you snip your circles you are done cutting and ready to sew!  This is what it should look like.

One for my daughter

and one for me

That is all for today, so cut out your fabric and be ready for sewing on Wednesday.  For those of you that wanted to make your own bias tape and don’t know how there is a great tutorial over at Colette Patterns, the only thing I would add to it is that if you don’t have the little metal bias shaper thingy you can just fold the pieces in with your fingers as you iron.  So again if there are any questions, or if you are wanting to throw that rotting fruit at me put it in the comments and I will address everything as soon as possible.

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One Response to A very, very, VERY beginner sew along 4- cutting the fabric and a big apology

  1. RobinDenning says:

    What cute fabric – that will be adorable! And I like your pattern weights 🙂

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