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help with squaring up fabric

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  • help with squaring up fabric

    I know that this probably seems a very silly and simple question to most of you ( I am a complete novice!!) - but how do you make sure that you get straight edges and right angles when cutting material?

    I've got a set square and long ruler which I have been using but yesterday I was trying to sew to widths together and it went completely wrong because I hadn't got straight edges to measure from!!! I've started creating patterns for my cushions and blinds (luckily i have access to an A0 plotter) which has helped in creating straight edges when cutting but I'm not going to be able to fall back on this for a pair of curtains!!!

    Forgive me if this seems elementary but I am new to this!!

  • #2
    Re: Precise Measurements and Right Angles

    It sounds like you are starting from the right place if you already have a long metal ruler and set square. Be careful if using pattered fabric as the pattern may not be printed/woven straight across the fabric - always put the set square to the selvage edge (as long as it is not obviously stretched or puckered) then place the ruler against it. This will show if the pattern is straight or not - do not be tempted to cut to the pattern unless you are sure it is straight.

    If you pin your curtain drops on one selvage, then use the set square and ruler to pin across on the second selvage at the same points you can then do a self-check by measuring between the pins to make sure both sides of one drop are the same length. This can highlight if something is amiss before you cut.

    If you have a large enough table you can lay the fabric on it with the selvage aligned with one edge (preferably weighted or clamped), if you allow the fabric to fall over one end then the perpendicular edge will show where a right-angled line would fall and you can quickly see if the pattern is straight.

    sigpic Simply Sewing


    • #3
      Re: Precise Measurements and Right Angles

      Hello Parsons

      Further to Louis's advice, you may find this post of interest.

      Hope you enjoy the forum!
      Have you registered your business yet?

      A MyDecozo Directory


      • #4
        Re: help with squaring up fabric

        Just following this part of the thread - when I cut sateen lining for curtains (I usually use lapped, i.e. folded lining) I was taught to tear it, to make it square. It usually needs to be pulled on the bias to straighten it up, but then as time goes by and the fabric softens, it is still sitting square. That said, when I cut my lining for roman blinds, I do tend to cut it square (by lining up selvedge with the edge of the table). However, I have been using FR lining recently, and it does not tear, so I am cutting that square as well.