Fussy-Cut Fabric with a Template
Learn to fussy-cut specific motifs in your fabric using a template as seen in the Winter 2015 issue of Quilts and More magazine.
I'm Jody Sanders with Quilts and More. This is the hexagon pincushion. It's designed by Doris Brunnette and Trina Kirkvold of Row House Creations. It's in the Winter 2015 issue of Quilts and More magazine. And in this issue you'll find the instructions and pattern pieces that you need to make the pincushion. The thing I love about this pincushion is No. 1, it's the hexagon shape, which I'm very fond of. But you'll notice that it's made up of six different what we call kite shapes and each one of those kite shapes has a different motif in it. This is called fussy-cutting where you take a specific motif and you center that on your template and you cut it out six different times. Now I knew I wanted to make this pincushion myself. But I was going to do a little different version of fussy-cutting and in the pincushion that I made, which is this one here, there are six kites just like the other one that are sewn together to make up the hexagon on the top, but in this case, what I did was a singled out a single motif. And it was this one piece here on the fabric and I repeated that six times. So I want to show you how I did that. First of all, you're going to need a piece of fabric. And you can decide which design you like the best. I happen to like a paisley, and paisleys have lots of options for fussy-cutting, because as you can see, there's a lot of design. You also could pick a stripe or a floral. If you do pick a floral, pick a smaller floral, because you're going to have a template that's fairly small. It's only about this big, as you can see. And so if you have a large floral, you're not going to be able to get very much of the pattern in your little template shape. So, paisleys are really a great option. So in this case, I picked this green and brass and cream paisley. And I took my template, which I already made from my pattern piece, and I placed it at different parts of the fabric to decide which design I liked the best. When I finally found the design that I liked, I placed my template over, I like that design, I got a straight pin and on the front side of the fabric, kind of having my finger where my template was, I remove the template, and then just stuck that straight pin on the front side of the fabric. Then what you're going to do is turn your fabric over, because you're going to be marking it on the back side. So I find on the back where my pin is, I get my template, kind of place it with my other hand on the top, and just remove that pin and get it out of the way. Once I have determined where I want that template to be, I'll go ahead, and I'm going to trace it with a pen, a Shapie, or a pencil. You can use any kind of fabric marking pen. It's going to be on the backside of the fabric, so you're not going to see it anyway. So go ahead and mark all the way around your template. Now remember, your template is exactly the size of your finished piece, so there isn't a seam allowance at this point. So you're just marking around your fabric, then before I remove my template and move it to the next spot, I'm going to put some registration marks. So there's a curve or a little stem or a dot in the center of the flower, you'll want to mark those on your template, because when you remove your template and you move it to the next repeat on your piece of fabric, you're going to line up those registration marks again. And then you'll know exactly where to mark around that next template. Now you're going to do that six times to make six exact pieces. So when you're determining your piece of fabric, you want to look and make sure that you have at least six repeats. Sometimes I even do seven in case i make a mistake in either cutting or marking. But a minimum of six and if you can get seven or more that's probably a good idea. So go ahead, once you've done your marking. And then the next step is going to be cutting out your actual pieces that you've marked. Now there's a couple of ways you can do this, because as I've mentioned, there's no seam allowance yet. So if you want to take a ruler, you can go ahead and you can mark around your 1/4" seam allowance on all four sides of the template, and then cut it out. Or I do what's called eye-balling it. And I know what size my finished piece is, and I go ahead, and I just cut that right out of the piece of fabric. So now you have your three fussy-cut pieces, and you're ready to sew those three together. And once you sew those three together, you have your half of the hexagon shape done. Then you're going to sew three more hexagons together for your second half, and then sew those halves together and you have your full hexagon shape for your top of the pincushion.