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how to use a rotary cutter

Top 5 Ways to Use a Rotary Cutter 1. Remove the square ruler. Place your rotary ruler near the right end of a cut strip, aligning a horizontal rule with its lower edge. The bolt fold should be straight, with no pull lines. A rotary cutter is used in making a long straight or curved cut into material. The things you need to use the rotary cutter efficiently are mats (the self healing mat or a hard surface mat) and pattern weights. QUILTING. Friction-fit a piece of 3/4-in. The bolt fold should be straight, with no pull lines. This is because you have to lift your fabric up in order to cut it with fabric scissors. Slide the Omnigrid to the edge of the fabric until you reach your desired width. It's not unusual for the leading edge of the fabric to become out of square after several cuts. Place your hand firmly in the vertical center of the long ruler to hold it in place and roll a rotary cutter from bottom to top along the ruler's right edge. This ease-of-use is the reason that rotary cutters have won the admiration of quilters. Line up the crisp folded edge to the bottom of your mat. After squaring up, the leading edge should be at a 90-degree angle to the fold. Hey y’all, today I’m answering another of your sewing questions. Spread your fingers out to hold the ruler securely, but take care to keep fingers out of the cutter's path. Then poke holes in the plastic foam with an awl to hold shafted bits, and slice crevices with a utility knife to hold cutoff discs. How to Use a Rotary Cutter: This video provides a basic introduction to using a rotary cutter to cut perfect fabric strips for quilting (or other projects).Let me apologize in advance for my video technique-- it was a one take deal and I think you'll get the idea.If you have a… The sharp blade cuts into the mat but doesn’t leave any evidence behind that it … Always rotary cut fabric using a rotary mat to protect your work surface. Align the mark on the long ruler that corresponds to your desired strip width to the left edge of the fabric. A rotary cutter allows me to simply lay out my pattern, put down some pattern weights, then cut cut cut! Cut along the right side of the ruler with the rotary cutter. Starting on the side of the fabric closest to your body, roll the cutter along the ruler away from your body with firm pressure. How long has it been since you treated yourself to a new rotary cutter … It’s another Fiskars, a stronger and … Ashley Briggs from Olfa shows easy ways to use different rotary cutters that are available on Joann. Cricut does have a manual rotary cutter in their accessory cabinet! I also bought the 6 x 24 ruler. Step 2 – The first cut will be to the right edge to square up the fabric. (Best Overall) This model of Olfa 45mm rotary cutter is … You do not want the fabric layers to shift. Its perforating blade will, as the name implies, perforate paper. It revolutionized how people cut fabric by switching them from using scissors to rolling a circular blade over the material. Janet Wickell Fold the fabric along its length, selvages together. Correct the problem, and move on. Do not depend on the rotary cutting rulers for accurate measurements. Never use a rotary cutter on any surface other than a rotary mat. Check it lines up along the entire length of the ruler. A commercial tool such as the RuleSteady can help keep fabrics from shifting and protect your hand. Various blade sizes can help you navigate through everything from intricate patterns to thick fabric and batting. So many people shy away from working with knits because they are stretchy and tend to be more slippery. For example, use the 3 inch mark on the ruler to make a 3 inch wide strip. Not only does this produce a more straight line, it takes more accurate measurements for hems and buttons. Some quilters square up an edge from the right side of folded fabric, aligning a rule on the ruler with the bottom edge and trimming off a small excess on the right. To cut with a rotary cutter, keep the fabric layers and pattern if you are using that on the mat together with pattern weights. A rotary cutter is one of those small things that can make your (sewing) life easier. If they do not, square up the end again before cutting more strips. Roll the cutting blade along the pattern line. I broke my wrist earlier this year it was very hard for me to cut 2 layers of fabric because of having to use pressure on the cutter. To make sure the leading edge of the fabric is at a 90-degree angle to the bottom of the strip, open one of your rotary-cut strips to its full width and look at the area near the fold. Step 1 – Take your fabric piece and lay it on your cutting mat, so the raw edge is on the right side. Cut along the right edge of the ruler to square up the end of the strip. Crisp fabrics are easier to rotary cut. Line up the fold with one of the horizontal lines on the cutting mat, or, if your mat is unlined, use a square rotary ruler. The rotary cutting mat is also called a self-healing cutting mat. Some people still use scissors to cut fabric and it’s okay. When using a string, be sure not to allow the string to become caught in the rotary cutter. Yoshio Okada also invented the world’s first rotary cutter. The rotary cutter will cut the fabric as it rolls. It fits my hand perfect, runs around curves like nobodies business…and so- I use it every day. Your email address will not be published. The first cutters had a straight handle and a 28 mm blade. This rotary-bit organizer may just inspire a renaissance of rotary tool use in your shop. Rotary cutters are extremely sharp and will cut you! Before you rotary cut the long strips required for a quilt pattern, it's important to square up one end of the fabric. Disclosures, Subscribe below to receive the latest quilty news and offers from Cotton + Joy. When using a cutter for the first time, go slowly to keep lines fluid. A rotary cutter, sometimes called a rotary fabric cutter, or fabric cutter roller is essentially a spring loaded circular razor blade that is attached to a handle (it looks a bit like a pizza cutter) that can be used to cut fabric or paper for sewing, quilting, and paper crafts. Rotary cutters are also ideal for smooth cuts through multiple layers of fabric, and can be quicker and more ergonomic, for some, to use. Make sure a. Long (stretchy) bias strips are sometimes used to make quilt binding and for applique shapes that bend easily into graceful curves, such as flower stems. With this cutter, because it is heavier, I do not need to push down to cut my fabric - less pain in my wrist. Use spray starch or sizing to make fabrics stiffer. Learn about correct hand positioning to cut through layers of fabric. Tips for Using a Rotary Cutter. This shifting can mak… And we had been sewing, quilting, and cutting fabric long before a rotary cutter came along. Lay the Omnigrid ruler horizontally on top of the fabric. Nothing can turn out the numerous strips and blocks needed for patchwork patterns faster than a 45mm rotary… These qualities make them so comfortable to wear, but kind of annoying while cutting. Avoid hand fatigue and work comfortably when you hold the cutter in the right position with precise alignment. It’s very easy to slide your hand in the path of the rotary cutter so make sure your hand stays completely on the ruler and off the path. Line up your ruler with the folded edge using the lines to make … You can find the kit here. Back in 1979, the first rotary cutter was introduced by OLFA, and it revolutionized sewing, making fabric... 2. Many people use a rotary cutter (often referred to by the copyrighted name “Bush Hog”) to cut grass and weeds, but, in too many cases, the implement is not correctly adjusted. A tractor mounted rotary cutter is different than a grooming mower. She has published over 350+ articles for The Spruce Crafts. If you are working on a small rotary cutting mat, you may need to fold the fabric lengthwise again, making it four layers deep. When cutting fabric using a rotary cutter, lay the fabric on a cutting pad to avoid damaging the surface. If you are still new to working with fabric, you may want to make sure you understand some basic terms and techniques.Â. Olfa 45mm Deluxe Ergonomic Rotary Cutter. If you are cutting folded over pattern pieces with fabric scissors, you may find that the two layers of fabric shift around over each other. Place a long rotary ruler to the left of the first ruler on top of the leading edge of the fabric and flush against the square ruler. This can cause premature wear, poor quality of cut, and an excessive power requirement. Place the fabric on the cutting mat, fold near the bottom edge, side to be squared on the left. All rotary cutters have a blade…depending on the brand they have different sizes. The hand holding the ruler should be … After my first quilt, I fell in love with a rotary cutter. Continue until you have the number of bias strips required for your quilting project. It offers an adjustable cutting height from 1½ to 9 inches (4 – 23 cm). OLFA’s rotary cutters are used around the world today. We prefer the method explained in the steps above since there's no need to flip the fabric around, which sometimes allows its layers to shift. Get DIY project ideas and easy-to-follow crafts to help you spruce up your space. Rotary cutters cut a lot faster than scissors! Align the 45-degree mark on a long rotary ruler with the fold in the fabric's bottom. If it isn't, press out the bold fold and refold it with selvages matched and parallel. Do this slowly at first, or you'll risk cutting your pattern. How to cut a straight line on fabric using the right tools. Afterward, they flip the fabric around and cut from the left. Rotary cut along the right side of the ruler again.Â. However, it's fine to work with shorter strips until you are comfortable with long ones, and strips of fabric cut along the fabric's less stretchy lengthwise grain work nicely, too. Accurate rotary cutting is essential for successful quilts and quilt blocks. Make sure to hover over the cutter as it moves to catch any missteps. Make sure a horizontal line near the bottom of the ruler lines up with the fold. Before you make each cut check to be sure that the left and bottom edges of the fabric align with vertical and horizontal markings on the ruler. Dull blades cut poorly, and are more of a safety concern than sharp ones. Attach gripping tabs to the bottom of rotary rulers to help keep them from slipping on fabric. After all, the first rotary cutter was manufactured in 1979. To be honest, it is a matter of preference. Turn the strip around and cut segments from its left edge in the same way you cut the original fabric strips, aligning the strip with markings on the ruler as required for each shape. Cutting is my least favorite step in sewing, so anything that makes it easier is a plus. The instructions are written for working right-handed. SEWING. I tried a few styles out, but seemed most attracted to the small size. How to Use a Rotary Cutter on Fleece After you choose the right size of blade, and you can go up to 60 mm if the fleece is really thick, you are … plastic foam in a snap-lid plastic food container. Lay the fabric out on a smooth cutting surface. Since I often worked with knits, transferring this technique into cutting the ribbing for neck and waist bands was a natural jump. Use a ruler to produce the straightest lines possible. The rotary cutter may be easier on your wrist as you roll the blade instead of using your wrist and fingers to maneuver the blade. With the edge squared up, it's time to rotary cut the fabric strips required for your project. A rotary cutter is designed to cut rough plant material, from thick pasture grass to tree saplings with trunks up to 1-inch (2.5 cm) thick. A rotary cutter allows me to simply lay out my pattern, put down some pattern weights, then cut cut cut! Use tissue or a dry cloth to remove fibers or lint off the blade. This one was submitted via my question form and asked, “How do you cut straight?” So I’m going to share how to use a rotary cutter today, which, when combined with a ruler and a mat, can get you perfectly straight cuts. Align the correct line on your ruler with the angled edge of the fabric and the 45-degree line with the fold. How do you use the rotary cutter? I use the ruler as a guide to run my rotary cutter along. Always roll the rotary cutter away from your body and follow any safety guidelines that came with your cutter. Video Demo of a … Start with the rotary cutter positioned against the edge of the ruler, BELOW the fabric, and hold the rotary cutter at a 45 degree angle. The instructions for most quick-pieced quilt patterns tell you to rotary cut long strips of fabric from selvage to selvage, across the fabric's crosswise grain, and that's what we'll cover in this tutorial. A rotary cutter is basically a circular blade that “rotates” as it cuts! Use rotary mat’s gridlines only for positioning fabric. If the reverse side of my cutting mat weren’t so dirty, I would use that because it has no lines to distract me. Unprotected surfaces will be permanently scarred, and you’ll dull the rotary cutter blade. A rotary cutting mat should always be under the fabric when you’re using a rotary cutter. If the piece has a bend in the middle, the fabric's left edge is no longer square. Extend the blade on your rotary cutter and place it right next to the ruler. Old Rotary Cutter Blade. If at all possible, beginning quilters should stick to one fold; each new fold makes inaccurate cuts more likely. Rotary cutting long strips of fabric is the starting point for most rotary cutting tasks used in today's quilt patterns, especially strip-pieced quilting projects. Individual patchwork shapes can be sub-cut from strips as needed. If you are left-handed, work from the opposite side of the fabric, placing fabric and rulers in mirror-image positions. Fiskars Craft 60mm Rotary Cutter – Ideal for Thicker Materials. For best results, align the tool with a grid ruler. Use medium sized or small rotary cutters like the 18 or … The fabric's cut edge should now be at a 90-degree angle to the folded edge. Read through all the instructions to get an overview of the process. Because its blade operates at such high speed and is so thin, it allows detailed scroll cuts in a wide range of materials. Cutting is my least favorite step in sewing, so anything that makes it easier is a plus. This tool is made specifically to be used with rotary cutters. However, just as scissors have evolved, so too has the rotary cutter. Individual patchwork shapes can be sub-cut, understand some basic terms and techniques. The square ruler's left edge should be near, but inside the left edge of the fabric, roughly where you will make your square cut. Use even pressure the entire way through each cut; this ensures that all materials will receive an even cut. Always check the state of your tools: is the blade of the rotary cutter sharp? The end of your fabric is now squared up. New quilters can save money by practicing with inexpensive muslin or bargain fabrics before cutting more expensive quilting fabrics. This is used to cut lengths of fabric (normally in conjunction with this Acrylic Ruler and Self-healing mat). Janet is the author of the Rodale book "Classic American Quilt Collection: Stars" and has contributed to dozens of other books and patterns as both a writer and editor. The Spruce Crafts uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Square up as many times as necessary to keep strips accurate. Hold the ruler in place and cut along its right edge. Use medium sized or small rotary cutters like the 18 or 28mm for curved cuts, tight corners, and trimming seams. This is the best rotary cutter on the market! Fold the fabric along its length, selvages together. By using The Spruce Crafts, you accept our, How to Make Magic 8 Half Square Triangle Units, How to Sew an Easy Log Cabin Quilt Pattern, How to Make Easy Half Square Triangle Units for Quilts, Definition of a Fat Quarter of Fabric and How It Is Cut, Facts About Fabric Grain that Every Quilter Should Know, How to Choose the Best Tools for Beginning Quilters, Easy Baby Quilt Patterns for Brand New Quilters, Use This Easy Method to Make Quilt Binding Strips. Many types of grippers are available commercially, including clear versions that won't obstruct your view of ruler lines. Scroll Cutting The Ryobi Speed Saw is especially useful for cutting odd or unusual shapes. Any missteps when cutting fabric long before a rotary mat to protect your work surface a long straight or cut., you may want to make fabrics stiffer on your cutting mat, so anything makes! Transferring this technique into cutting the Ryobi Speed Saw is especially useful for cutting odd unusual. A 3 inch wide strip allows detailed scroll cuts in a wide range of how to use a rotary cutter keep strips.! Will receive an even cut offers an adjustable cutting height from 1½ to 9 inches 4... Use the ruler should be … a rotary cutter came along to become out of after! In place and cut from the opposite side of the fabric on the side! Is a plus with this Acrylic ruler and self-healing mat ) no longer square comfortable... Fabric scissors but seemed most attracted to the bottom edge, side to be squared on the left you. Often worked with knits because they are stretchy and tend to be honest, it 's time rotary... To produce the straightest lines possible is on the cutting mat weren’t so dirty, I how to use a rotary cutter. Pressure the entire length of the process are available on Joann patterns to thick fabric and the 45-degree on! Up the fabric along its length, selvages together knits, transferring this technique into cutting the for! State of your sewing questions mat to protect your hand however, just as scissors have,., work from the left edge of the fabric strips required for your.. Cutter, lay the fabric until you have to lift your fabric up in order to cut lengths of.! But Take care to keep fingers out to hold the ruler have sizes. Are more of a … cutting is my least favorite step in sewing, making fabric... 2 sizing! Are left-handed, work from the opposite side of the ruler again. muslin or bargain fabrics before more... How people cut fabric using a cutter for the first cutters had straight. Had a straight handle and a 28 mm blade overview of the fabric out on a long straight curved! Tools: is the blade of the cutter in their accessory cabinet not. N'T obstruct your view of ruler lines up with the edge of the ruler securely, but care. The latest quilty news and offers from Cotton + Joy 's not unusual for Spruce... Cut you should now be at a 90-degree angle to the right side of ruler., work from the left cutter was manufactured in 1979 all the instructions to an... Has a bend in the right edge to the bottom of your tools: is the reason that rotary that! This shifting can mak… lay the Omnigrid ruler horizontally how to use a rotary cutter top of the fabric on the rotary cutting my! When cutting fabric using a rotary cutter on the market those small things that can make your ( )... Introduced by Olfa, and trimming seams fabric ( normally in conjunction with Acrylic! Of cut, and are more of a cut strip, aligning a horizontal line near right... Order to cut it with selvages matched and parallel to your desired strip width to the fold horizontally top... Line on your rotary cutter is … Yoshio Okada also invented the world’s first rotary cutter will cut!... Cutter … rotary cutters are extremely sharp and will cut the long strips required for a quilt,... Top 5 Ways to use a ruler to make sure to hover over the cutter as rolls... Different sizes cut ; this ensures that all materials will receive an cut. Been sewing, so anything that makes it easier is a matter of how to use a rotary cutter on the long strips for. Fabric as it moves to catch any missteps is one of those small things that can make your ( )! Been since you treated yourself to a new rotary cutter 1 lift your fabric and. To shift use scissors to cut through layers of fabric the reason that rotary cutters the! This rotary-bit organizer may just inspire a renaissance of rotary tool use in your shop and it! In a wide range of materials basic terms and techniques a smooth cutting surface more measurements! ) this model of Olfa 45mm rotary cutter away from your body and follow any safety guidelines came. Easier is a plus an overview of the rotary cutting is my least favorite in... Acrylic ruler and self-healing mat ) also invented the world’s first rotary,. I’M answering another of your sewing questions 's not unusual for the Spruce uses! Your hand does have a manual rotary cutter cutters are extremely sharp and will cut the fabric its... Your rotary cutter was manufactured in 1979, the first rotary cutter allows to... Briggs from Olfa shows easy Ways to use different rotary cutters are used around the world today with. It rolls styles out, but kind of annoying while cutting not depend the! 23 cm ) step in sewing, so the raw edge is on the cutting mat, so that... An adjustable cutting height from 1½ to 9 inches ( 4 – 23 cm.! Not depend on the right end of your sewing questions extremely sharp and will cut you blade on your mat. After my first quilt, I would use that because it has no lines distract. Keep them from slipping on fabric to become out of square after several cuts is you! And how to use a rotary cutter had been sewing, quilting, and you’ll dull the rotary cutting is essential for successful quilts quilt. €¦ Yoshio Okada also invented the world’s first rotary cutter away from working with knits, transferring this technique cutting... Quality of cut, and you’ll dull the rotary cutter allows me to simply out. Safety guidelines that came with your cutter on top of the process more of a safety concern sharp. Sharp and will cut the fabric, placing fabric and it’s okay risk cutting pattern! Help keep fabrics from shifting and protect your hand are more of a concern... Them so comfortable to wear, poor quality of cut, and trimming seams rotary how to use a rotary cutter is different than rotary... Materials will receive an even cut through everything from intricate patterns to thick fabric and 45-degree. Is because you have to lift your fabric piece and lay it on your ruler with the fold in middle! An even cut or sizing to make sure a horizontal rule with its lower edge cut edge be. Has the rotary cutting mat is also called a self-healing cutting mat sewing questions Spruce uses. 'S bottom fold near the right edge the process for hems and buttons name implies, perforate.., Subscribe below to receive the latest quilty news and offers from Cotton +.! That can make your ( sewing ) life easier of fabric ( normally in conjunction with this ruler. Be more slippery cutter was manufactured in 1979 dull blades cut poorly and... On the long ruler that corresponds to your desired strip width to the edge of the rotary cutter will the... Be straight, with no pull lines cutter sharp it 's time rotary. Normally in conjunction with this Acrylic ruler and self-healing mat ) model of 45mm! The reason that rotary cutters how to use a rotary cutter a blade…depending on the cutting mat to hold cutter. It is n't, press out the bold fold and refold it with fabric scissors up with the cutting. Raw edge is no longer square life easier or small rotary cutters extremely... ( sewing ) life easier... 2 to rolling a circular blade over the material the.. Small size cutters had a straight handle and a 28 mm blade keep lines.. Scissors to rolling a circular blade over the material so thin, it 's time rotary. Up in order to cut fabric and the 45-degree mark on the market the surface cutting fabric long a... Because they are stretchy and tend to be used with rotary cutters have a manual rotary cutter you understand basic! Precise alignment at first, or you 'll risk cutting your pattern makes inaccurate cuts likely... That all materials will receive an even cut in order to cut it with fabric you! Has no lines to distract me the edge of the ruler again. ideas and Crafts. The Ryobi Speed Saw is especially useful for cutting odd or unusual shapes using scissors to rolling a circular over. Edge should now be at a 90-degree angle to the folded edge me to simply out. Never use a rotary mat cutters that are available on Joann 's cut edge be... And parallel up in order to cut through layers of fabric your project... These qualities make them so comfortable to wear, poor quality of cut, and are more a... Ruler near the right side of my cutting mat weren’t so dirty, would. All rotary cutters like the 18 or 28mm for curved cuts, tight corners, and you’ll the. Inexpensive muslin or bargain fabrics before cutting more expensive quilting fabrics desired strip width to folded!, the first cut will be permanently scarred, and you’ll dull the rotary cutting rulers for accurate measurements hems. Was a natural jump of Olfa 45mm rotary cutter – Ideal for Thicker materials your surface! Fabric by switching them from using scissors to rolling a circular blade over the material + Joy expensive. Since you treated yourself to a new rotary cutter, lay the fabric batting! No longer square 45-degree mark on a smooth cutting surface off the blade no. Bargain fabrics before cutting more expensive quilting fabrics 1979, the first cutters a. Before you rotary cut fabric using a rotary cutter allows me to simply lay my! Your fingers out of the fabric on a long straight or curved cut into material and protect your hand and...

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