Everything you want to know about Pre Cut Fabrics!

If you’re a quilter or have shopped for quilting fabrics, you’ve probably come across pre-cut fabrics. They are fabulous curated bundles of fabric that are so incredibly handy when quilting! Learn all about the most common pre-cut fabrics here.

Half yard bundles, Fat Quarters, 10″ squares, 5″ squares, and 2 1/2″ strips are the most commonly used pre-cut shapes. There are other shapes that some manufacturers cut (though they don’t generally cut these specialty shapes for all their lines). These include 1 1/2″ strips, 6″ hexagons, 2 1/2″ squares, and triangles. Not every fabric manufacturer cuts every shape for their fabric lines, so it can be handy to learn how to cut your own “pre-cut” fabrics. I show you how to cut the most common sizes in this video:

If you’d like to get my simple “cheat sheet” on standard pre-cut sizes, you can get the download link by subscribing to my newsletter here:

 
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In most fabric stores, you’ll find fabric sold as “yardage” off the bolt. You select your bolts of fabric, bring them to the counter, and have an employee cut off the amount of fabric you require. Many quilters have a preferred yardage amount for any fabric they are going to add to their fabric stash – usually somewhere between 1/2 yard and 3 yards, depending on the expected use of the fabric.

Fabric off the bolt measures at least 40″ from selvedge to selvedge. Different manufacturers have different WOF (Width of Fabric). A yard is 36″. Therefore, a yard of fabric off the bolt measures 36″ by at least 40″. And a half yard will measure 18 by at least 40″.

A fat quarter is a very common cut of fabric. A quarter yard is 9″ x at least 40″. A 9″ strip is not a very usable piece of fabric, because you can’t cut a 10″ or 12″ square from it, and you can only cut 8 5″ squares, leaving a large amount of scrap behind. That is why most quilters prefer a fat quarter. A fat quarter is a half yard of fabric that has been cut in half perpendicular to the width of fabric – generally on the fold in the middle. This results in a piece of fabric that is 18″ x 20″, and a much more usable cut of fabric. You can cut a 12″ square, two 10″ squares, or twelve 5″ squares from a fat quarter. It is called a “fat” quarter because it is wider than a quarter yard that is cut right off the bolt – therefore it is “fatter.” Some people mistakenly call a fat quarter a “flat quarter.” This is a fairly common mispronunciation. Likely because “fat” and “flat” sound so similar, but also because fat quarters are often folded into sixteenths, making a flat, square-ish piece of fabric.

Fat Quarters are often sold in curated bundles. Usually these bundles are all fabrics from the same manufacturer and the same line of fabric. But, some quilt shops curate their own custom Fat Quarter bundles. And many quilt shops sell individual fat quarters – a very cost-effective way for a quilter to add favorite fabrics to their collection.

10″ squares and 5″ squares are common pre-cuts. They generally are cut and packaged by the manufacturer, and include fabrics from a single line. 42 is a common number of fabrics in a 10″ or 5″ stack, but this is not an industry standard. Packs often have repeats of different fabrics, depending on the total number of fabrics in the line.

2 1/2″ strips are a very popular pre-cut. They are used in many pre-cut friendly quilts, and a single set of 2 1/2″ strips can be used to make a quick lap-sized quilt. These strips are 2 1/2″ wide, and the length is the entire length of the fabric. 2 1/2″ strips can also make great sashing, or binding for finished quilts.

Scrappy Placemat using Strips and Scrap Tape

Turn your scraps into a useful placemat with this quilt-as-you-go scrappy placemat! You can whip up this placemat in about an hour using the quilt-as-you-go method, and your scraps. And, you can use your scraps of batting as well! Placemats are so handy to have, and scrappy, quilted placemats like these are super fun. Make a whole stack to have handy, and just throw them in the washing machine when they get dirty. You’ll love seeing all your favorite quilting scraps in these scrappy placemats.

Scrappy Quilt as you go Placemat - Two placemats made of strips and scraps are on top of one another with a plate, knife, and fork on top. The Always Expect Moore Logo is in the bottom corner of the image.

You can make this table runner using just strips, but if you want to use your smaller scraps, you can convert them to strips using Scrap Tape. Scrap Tape is a new product that makes it so easy to turn small scraps into usable 2 1/2″ strips! The Scrap Tape is a water soluble interfacing that you can stitch your scraps to. It is sturdy enough to help control the bias in wonky scraps, and light enough to stitch through. When you’re done, you just wash it out with water! You can see how scrap tape works in this video here:

If you’d like to play with Scrap Tape, I sell it in my shop! You can get Scrap Tape here.

Once you’ve made your scrap tape and cut your strips, you can make your placemat. I have a free pattern download showing you how to make your scrappy placemat. Sign up for my newsletter below, and I’ll send the pattern link directly to your inbox:

 
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If you’d like to see what this Quilt-as-you-go technique looks like as you’re doing it, I made a quilt-as-you-go table runner. You can see how it goes together in this video:

I made this project as part of the Scrap Busting Blog Hop being hosted by my fabulous quilting friend Mel! Thanks mel for inviting me to join you on this scrappy journey! You can learn more about the scrap busting blog hop over at The Quilting Room with Mel, and check out her scrappy post from this week here.

And you can go check out last week’s scrappy projects, as well! I love this scrappy foundation paper pieced gnome that Marney made. I also love these scrappy numbers that Katie stitched up.

Contrast Quilt Pattern

The Creative Grids Simple 7/8″ ruler is the easiest way ever to cut your squares for Half-Square Triangles. No more trying to see the tiny line – Creative Grids has made the 7/8″ lines the star of this ruler! Watch to see how to cut 7/8″ squares to make perfect half-square triangles every time. You won’t believe how these easy 7/8″ squares are! This is the quilting ruler that you never knew existed, but always needed!

This quilt is made using half-square triangles. These are a super simple and basic unit in quilting. The trickiest part of good half-square triangles is making sure you get accurate cuts. I recently discovered the 7/8″ Ruler from Creative Grids that makes it simple to get accurate 7/8″ cuts for half-square triangles! The genius behind this ruler is so simple – instead of making the 1″ marks the star of the show, it focuses on the 7/8″ marks! If you make just a few half-square triangle quilts, you’ll be so excited to have this ruler – it will save you from mis-cuts and make your squares so much more accurate!

I show you how to use the Creative Grids Simple 7/8″ Ruler in this video:

Get the Creative Grids Simple 7/8 Ruler in my shop here.

Use my affiliate link to get the Creative Grids Simple 7/8″ Ruler at the Fat Quarter Shop.

And, if you want to use your Creative Grids 7/8″ ruler right away, you’ll want the Contrast Quilt pattern!

Get a free download of the Contrast Quilt Pattern for a limited time when you sign up for my email list:

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Forest for the Trees Quilt

This quilt has been on my mind for months, and I’m so excited to share it as a Ruler of the Month quilt! Many times, when you see a quilt like this, it has been either foundation paper pieced or the pieces have been cut with a template. With 100 trees in this quilt, I didn’t want to use a tedious method to make these blocks! So, I re-purposed the Creative Grids Strippy Stars tool to make this quilt using strip piecing methods! Strip Piecing is much faster than foundation piecing or cutting templates, which means this quilt goes together much faster. And, because of the way the Strippy Stars template is designed, you also avoid sewing any unsupported bias edges. Which means that your blocks will stay square!

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If you’re not familiar with the Strippy Stars tool, or want to get reacquainted, you can watch my video on this fabulous tool here:

I sell the Strippy Stars Tool in my shop. You can also find the Stripy Stars Tool at the Fat Quarter Shop and you can find the Strippy Stars Tool on Amazon. I love this tool so much I’ve actually made two other patterns using this ruler. The Patriot Mini and Pocket Advent Calendar are both available on my site.

And while I could have left these 100 trees in a grid format, that feels far too orderly for a forest quilt. So, I made sure that the trees got a random, staggered look to them. Much more fun and modern than a grid of identical tree blocks!

The Forest for the Trees quilt is a great winter quilt, with so many fabulous pine trees. But, I also love it as a cabin quilt! This past year my family visited the mountains two different times, and had a fabulous time staying in different cabins. This quilt is the perfect cabin quilt!

You can choose to make all your trees from the same fabric, but I loved making this tree quilt with an assortment of different Art Gallery Fabrics green prints. From blenders to solids to florals and geometrics, the different designs give an overall scrappy feel without being overpowering.

I hope you love this quilt as much as I do! I’m offering it for free for a limited time… use the form below to join the email newsletter list, and I’ll send you the pattern for free.

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Harlequin Quilt

If you’re looking for a simple quilt pattern to use with novelty prints or large focal prints, then the Harlequin Quilt is perfect! It makes a nice long lap quilt, can be made in a day, and has large piecing that allows focal prints and novelty prints to really shine.

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The Harlequin Quilt uses the Folded Corner Clipper to make the stitch-and-flip corners a breeze! No need to draw lines on the back of every square, the Folded Corner Clipper by Creative Grids lets you trim up each corner to 1/4″, which essentially marks and trims the corner all at once! You can get the Folded Corner Clipper here in my shop. Or you can purchase the Folded Corner Clipper at the Fat Quarter Shop.

You can see how easy it is to use the Folded Corner Clipper to make Snowball blocks, Flying Geese, and Half-Square Triangles in this video:

Get the Harlequin Quilt pattern free for a limited time by joining the email list:

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Halloween Gnomes Quilt

I wanted to play with the Gnome die on my Accuquilt GO! machine, but I wasn’t ready to start on Christmas quilts yet. So, I thought I’d try stitching up a gnome using Halloween fabric. I made one, and immediately fell in love with how it looked! I knew I wanted to make more, but I wasn’t sure what I’d do with them.

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Even though I wasn’t sure what I was going to make, I cut out hats, bodies, beards, feet, and noses from Halloween fabrics. I used Art Gallery Fabrics Spooky N Sweeter fabric as well as other Art Gallery Fabrics that coordinated. I fused Heat N Bond Lite to the back of all the fabrics before cutting.

For the background, I cut fabric 6″ x 10″. After seam allowance, this leaves a 5 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ block which is an odd size. But, I wasn’t worried about combining these blocks with blocks of a different size. I also didn’t worry about the position of my Halloween Gnomes. Some are closer to the top and some are closer to the bottom. I just kept them at least a 1/2″ from the edge to make sure there was plenty of room for seam allowance.

I did want to combine the gnome blocks with some other blocks. I had made two spider projects for Accuquilt – the Spider Cluster Table Runner and the Dangling Spiders – and I had some leftover spiders cut out. So, I added spider appliques to some of the blocks. You can find the Accuquilt Spider Die here.

I picked out a total of 30 blocks – 5 rows of 6 blocks each – and used 1 1/2″ strips that I had leftover from making the Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner as sashing to put them all together.

I’ll be quilting it using large black stitches on my Baby Lock Sashiko machine, which will complete the Halloween look on the quilt. And, I still have some leftover gnome blocks that I’ll make zippered pouches with, just for fun.

If you’d like to make a quilt like this, or play with any of these designs, then you’ll want to get the Accuquilt dies I used. I used the Accuquilt Gnome Die as well as the Accuquilt Spider Die.

Spider Web Table Topper

If you’re looking for a fun and unique Halloween decor piece, look no further than this Spider Web Table Topper. While the lace-like technique used to put these pieces together is perfect for some spooky fun, it will work perfectly in seasonal decor of all kinds – just change out the thread color for a completely different look!

You can watch this short video below to see how it works. I’ve also included written instructions below to outline the steps.

Start by cutting 4 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ squares from Halloween fabrics. I used Spooky and Sweeter by Art Gallery Fabrics, and cut a total of 48 squares. You can cut more squares for a bigger table topper, and you can cut your squares bigger if you like. This project is completely customizable.

Pair up the squares, right-sides-together. Stitch around all 4 sides, leaving a 2″ gap on one side.

Clip the corners. Turn right side out. Use a turning tool to poke out the corners so that they are crisp.

Press flat. Top stitch all the way around the edge of the square, locking your stitches when you meet up with the beginning point.

Install the 5mm Bridging Plate onto your Baby Lock machine. It is as easy as removing the Bobbin Plate and replacing it with the Bridging Plate.

Thread your machine like you normally would. Select a decorative stitch (I chose 3-11) and set the width to 7mm so that it is wider than the 5mm Bridging Plate.

Switch to your N foot. Place one square on either side of the Bridging Plate, and carefully feed under the needle. Keep an eye on the spacing under the needle to make sure that it is catching both sides with each stitch.

Continue, making 8 rows of 3.

Stitch the rows together in the same manner to make the completed table topper. When you get to the gap, lift up your presser foot, advance the project forward under the presser foot, and then continue.

That’s it! The table topper looks upscale but it is easy enough for a beginner to make. The secret (as always) is having the right tools!

I stitched up this whole project on my Baby Lock Aria. If you’d like to learn more about the Baby Lock Aria or find a local dealer that carries the Baby Lock Aria, check out the Baby Lock website. You can also ask your dealer about getting bridging plates for your machine.

Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner

When summer turns to fall, all the candles and pumpkins come out. If you’re ready to put out all the fall decor, add this Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner to your fall decor this year! Fun to make using all of your harvest-toned scraps, this Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner can be stitched up in a day. It is simple enough to quilt on your domestic machine, bind, and get on your table the same day you start!How to use the Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool

Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool

This Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner is part of my Ruler of the Month series. Each month I pick a ruler, show you how to use it, and offer a free pattern so you can try out your new ruler skills! This month I’ve done something different. The ruler I chose is a ruler I have featured as the Ruler of the Month before – it is the Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool.

The Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool makes faux-curved blocks. You still do all straight cutting and piecing. But, because of the way that the pieces are stitched together, it makes a curved-looking design. A great way to make curved shapes without sewing any curved blocks. And, this is a fabulous way to use your favorite scraps to make a new project!

We’re using the 4″ Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool. If you don’t already own it, you can buy the Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool in my shop – and I offer free shipping in the US on all orders!

If you’ve never seen the Creative Grids Curvy Log Cabin Ruler in action, you can watch this video to see how easy it is to make these “curvy” blocks that go together as easily as a Log Cabin block!

Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner Pattern

This pattern is beginner-friendly. All the steps for making the pattern are broken down in this full-color pattern with lots of diagrams. If you prefer to read the text of a pattern, look at the images, or a combination of the two, you will enjoy the Scrappy Table Runner Pattern.

You can buy the scrappy pumpkin table runner pattern in my shop:

Ball & Chain Quilt

This month’s new quilt is the Ball and Chain Quilt. It uses the Scrap Crazy 6 Template from Creative Grids. The Scrap Crazy 6 template is designed for using scraps, but you can also use yardage like I did here to make a more curated looking quilt. And, these Scrap Crazy 6 Quilt Templates allow you to easily cut out pieces – you don’t need to double-check that you have the right markings on the ruler when you’re using these templates. Just cut out your pieces and you’re ready to quilt!

The Ball & Chain quilt is made using a simple method for making quilts. First you make all of the rows, and then you put the rows together to make a quilt. Many of these rows are made out of quilt blocks, but there are sashing-like strips between the rows. These give the eye a place to rest because the rest of the quilt has so much going on. Which is hard to believe because this quilt is really only made using 2 blocks!

Learn how to use the Scrap Crazy 6 Template by watching the video I created. You’ll see that these templates are perfect for scrappy quilts, but also so much more!

Get the Scrap Crazy 6 Templates using my affiliate link at Fat Quarter Shop, or if you’d prefer to buy through Amazon you can use my Amazon affiliate link to get the Scrap Crazy 6 Template set.

If you’d like to download the Ball and Chain quilt pattern, you can purchase it below:

Tiger Tails Quilt

If you have always wanted to try a Dresden Plate block (or if you’ve made a bunch because you love them) then this quilt is for you! And if you’ve tried making Dresdens but they never turned out quite right then this is DOUBLY for you because the quilt uses half-dresdens which are more forgiving than full dresdens. Plus I have a video that shows you step-by-step how to make a dresden plate block using the Creative Grids 18 Degree Dresden Plate Ruler.

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If your local quilt shop doesn’t have this ruler, you can buy the Creative Grids 18 Degree Dresden Ruler at the Fat Quarter Shop, or you can get the ruler on Amazon. This ruler is so much fun because it makes a Dresden Plate block that has 20 points on it! That is a lot of points, and makes for such a fun block! Watch the video below to see how the Dresden Plate Quilt block is made:

If you’d like to get the Ruler of the Month Quilt pattern that I designed specifically to go with the 18 Degree Dresden Plate Ruler, you can click the button below to purchase it from my shop.

I just love how the Boscage fabrics by Katarina Roccella for Art Gallery Fabrics look in this quilt! The contrast is perfect, and I love that there is a leopard on a quilt called “Tiger Tails!” Being able to fussy-cut the prints for the centers of the Dresden blocks was so fun. And if you’re worried about the circles in this quilt – don’t be! There is no curved piecing at all, and I show you an easy way to make the applique circle centers in the video. So, be sure to watch it.