This last week a question was posted on Friends of Farmhouse Quilts about rulers and their accuracy among different brands. This jarred the memory to a mini workshop I attended last year at our quilt guild. Quilting 101. Now I will start out saying I am a self taught quilter. I started out at the age of 8 or 9 learning to sew from my mother and grandmother. I sewed clothes and craft items.
What I learned from this instructor surprised me. Not that it takes a lot to surprise me, but here is what I did learn…
- No 2 rulers measure the same. They will measure a little different. This doesn’t matter if this is the same brand or not. Try this little experiment…cut a piece of fabric with your favorite ruler and now take another off the wall and measure the fabric. Just a little off. Not much just a hair, but too many little bits can add up to a whole lot. I know different brands will measure different.
- Measuring with the same ruler would can make a difference. Where do you place the fabric to cut it. By this I mean to cut a 5×5 inch square do you place your fabric under the 5 inch mark or to the left or right of the bold marking line? This adds up on larger projects.
- Sewing machines will differ some what also. If you have to change machines in mid project them the seams will be a little different.
- Needles. Starting and ending with the same brand and size needle is important to exact size
- Thread thickness through out makes a difference.
All this is mind boggling for me. So this is how I combat all these pitfalls. I use the same rulers through out the whole project. Make sure I have a new needle and enough thread. As far as machines there isn’t a lot I can do about this.
Even though I try and follow all these things, I will still have some wonky blocks from time to time. But who isn’t a little wonky from time to time?
Do you have any more bits of information to be added to this list?
With all this said I have some pinwheel blocks to make. While it is snowing outside I will be watching it blow and snow, quilt and smell my beans for chili cooking.