Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Happy Scrapping

I've had my new Go Cutter for about a week now, and I've been playing with it here and there. I started with my scrap basket and worked my way through the little bits and pieces. With no particular goal in mind, I just started matching up scraps to shapes and filing them away.
The most frustrating thing I found at the beginning was not having the dies for the shapes that I usually cut. I have a routine worked out for cutting scraps into frequently used sizes bases on Bonny Hunters Scrap User's system. I use 5 inch squares for the Girl Scout quilts, so I focus on those first, especially with novelty fabrics. After that I cut strips, usually 2.5 inches, but sometimes 3.5. When the fabric gets too small for that I switch to 2 inch strips and then 1.5 inches.

So after I started getting the hang of the whole GO cutter thing, I began to work out a system. By looking at the dies I had, I estimated the width of fabric that would fit nicely in each die. Then while going through my scrap basket, I looked for fabric that would work with those dies. I went ahead and rotary cut the shapes that I didn't have dies for. For the rest, I just loosely cut fabric into pieces that were a little bigger than the shape I had in mind and stacked them on top of the die that I wanted to use.
I carried out this whole experiment in fabric while sitting next to the pool making sure nobody was going to drown.
Once I got a system going, cutting the fabric went really quickly. By the time the kids were ready to be done swimming, I had a nice little collection of squares and strips and circles. There wasn't much more waste than their would have been if I were cutting everything traditionally and it does go much faster, especially if working with yardage rather than scraps.
So, if you are thinking about getting a Go Cutter, think about how you cut fabric. Do you use specific shapes again and again? Would you make a quilt because it uses the shapes you have the die for? Are you willing to invest in the dies you need to make the quilts you want?
I like gadgets, so the idea of using a cool new tool makes me happy. I can see myself having fun and making quilts to get the most out of my new cutter.


Dr. Quiltmom said...

It looks like you are having fun with your new gadget. I am looking forward to seeing all kinds of new quilts from you. I am wondering what you are going to do with those circles?

Amy (lilme2_99) said...

Thanks for showing the cutter and some of your organiziation. Still not sold on it yet though....((thank goodness! The last thing I need is another quilting toy))

Linda said...

Thank you for the "play by play". I have never seen the cutter so I didn't know what to expect. Also--thanks for listing Bonnie's Scrap User's System. I just printed out her pages to add to my "need to know about quilting" binder!

heather said...

I use a lot of 2.5 inch strips and I don't really like cutting them out. I'd probably make a lot more log cabins if I didn't have to do all the cutting. I'm going to have to look into the cutter.

Linda said...

Thanks for the post. I have been thinking about the Go Cutter and debating whether or not I really needed one. I have read several different blogs, both good and bad about it. After reading this post, I have decided I will get one. I don't have any trouble cutting and I am a fast cutter but I do think it would help speed me up even more.