Friday, July 25, 2008

Think twice, cut once.




I sit here on a really rainy day with this on my table. It's the start of my wool skirt.

First things first, I must get around to the most important part of my project : the cutting layout of my pattern. Every sewer knows it is crucial to select the correct cutting layout so you have enough material for your pattern. I've discovered that there are terms I either get confused with or don't know while reading my instructions so here's some things I picked up in my journey...

1. Your pattern will include how to layout your material. In most cases I fold my fabric placing the selvages together. The whaaaat you say? The selvages are the woven ends of your fabric where it is uncut. Sometimes there's those dots running along the length of them. Just don't ask me how they got there. Anyhoo, selvages look really neat and you shouldn't use it when you cut your pattern. Now, the cut ends are on my left end and right end and sometimes need to be trimmed straight so they match up. I hope this makes sense. Below is a picture of a selvage. It's running upwards (vertically).

2. There are different widths of fabric but most commonly you will have either 114cms or 140cms. Your pattern will show you how to place your pattern blocks depending on the width you have. Just measure the length of your cut edge to determine how long yours is.

3. Choose your correct cutting layout so that you have enough fabric. You will need to account for the nap if you have one, which is not a short sleep, but a sewing term for print or design if your fabric has one. A really good guide is <<here>> It's got great explanations.

4. Once you place your fabric also make sure the grain lines are placed equal distance to your selvage. You measure once at the start of the arrow to the end of your selvage and then remember that distance and then measure the end of the arrow, making the end the same distance to your selvage.

5. Finally, take your time. Don't rush because once you start cutting there's no going back.

May the force be with you and don't stress too much about it.

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