Sewing Cafe

Patterns, Tutorials and Works in Progress from the Sewing Studio of Lynne Williams

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Pajama Pantaloons - Cutting Strips for Ruffles

Today I am doing a mini tutorial on how to cut the fabric strips for your ruffles. 
The quilting industry has developed some handy tools  for cutting strips, which work equally well for garment sewing.
 For cutting narrow strips of fabric quilters use the technique you will learn today.  If you are already familiar with this, you can come back on Friday to learn how to hem and gather/tuck your strips.

Gather your supplies for learning Rotary cutting:

1. 1/2 yard of fabric to match pantaloons or a contrast would be cute as well

We need 6 strips of fabric 2" wide by the WOF
(this means width of fabric from selvage to selvage). 

Fold your fabric so the selvage's lay on top of each other and the fabric lays smooth with no twists in it. 

Now fold, the fold on top of the selvage edges.

 Lay your fabric on your cutting mat and with the folds lining up with the horizontal lines on the cutting matt.  Lay your ruler so that it follows a vertical line and cut your fabric by running the rotary cutter along the edge of the ruler.  This takes some practice so I suggest you try it on some scrap fabric first.  Just play with the rotary cutter to get a feel of how it works, how much pressure it takes to cut through 4 thickness (probably less then you think).  Also practice cutting along the ruler so being careful that your ruler does not slip.

Have you practiced?

Then go ahead and cut that first rough edge off.  Make sure you are cutting through all 4 layers.  Sometimes that leading edge is really wonky and you may need to go quite a bit deeper then the 1/2" I need for my first cut. 

At this point I flip my fabric around so the edge I just cut is to my left, instead of my right.  Lay your C-thru ruler along your new edge so that the 2" mark is onto of your cut edge.  You will now cut a 2" wide strip by using your rotary cutter to the right edge of the ruler.

Repeat this step until you have 6 - 2" wide strips.

Now if you don't want to invest in cutting mats and rotary cutters, etc.  You can do it the way my mama taught me:) 

 Mark  6 lines on your fabric, 2" apart with a pencil and then cut along the pencil lines.

Oh boy your strips are ready to become ruffles now =D

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