Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Tip Tuesday! Two is NOT Always Better

"Tip Tuesday!" - Two is NOT Always Better

I love learning new things and then sharing that knowledge with my quilting friends. So, every Tuesday I'll provide some tips, hints, tricks, tutorials, shortcuts, etc. that I've learned over the years and share them here on the blog. 

"Tip Tuesday" will be a collection of information about a wide variety of subjects garnered from a large variety of sources.  I am not an expert by any means and do not take credit for being the great wizard behind all of these hints and tips. I will gladly give due credit whenever possible.

These tips will be archived and accessible to you just by clicking on the "Tip Tuesday" tab above. 

Read, enjoy, and be inspired! 


In terms of some things like dollars, yards of fabric, spools of thread, etc., two is ALWAYS better. But when it comes to rotary cutter blades in the cutter at the same time, it is NEVER better. (It would be great if doing that would make us cut twice as fast, but sadly that's not the case.)

This past Saturday I taught a class and two of the seven students were having serious challenges with their cutting. One of the students ("Experienced Quilter") had pre-cut all of her strips but was now sub-cutting, and she was just beside herself because she was wasting so much fabric and making a terrible mess. I was helping someone else ("New Quilter") at the time and promised to be right over. (I asked permission to use their experience for this post and they both agreed, as long as I didn't use their names; hence the "..." names.)

This is what was every cut looked like for "New Quilter."

Rotary Cutting, Two Blades

See all those slivers of fabric on both sides of the cut? I had a pretty good idea of what was causing the issue and asked when she changed her blade last. She told me she changed it Friday night, in preparation for the class.  I asked "Experienced Quilter" the same questions and she said she changed it right before cutting all of her strips.

Here's the culprit for the messy and bad cuts.

Rotary Cutting, Two Blades

Yep! That's two blades stuck together.

When you change blades and have purchased a multi-blade pack, be sure to separate the blades so you are only using one. 

The tell-tale sign of this problem are the slivers pictured above which makes for very messy cutting.

Two other students admitted to having had similar issues at times and assumed it was a bad blade from the manufacturer. One even said when she had the problem it was made worse by the fact that when she replaced the new blade with yet another, she found that the package was short a blade. She was really disgusted to pay the price for a 5-pack, only to find that there were only four blades in the package and one was bad. (She never thought about the fact that she could have picked up two at a time.) She was so unhappy that she put that cutter in a drawer and hasn't used it since. Instead, she bought another cutter, from a different manufacturer.

Now, of course, she realizes that she picked up and inserted two blades at once and it wasn't the cutter or the manufacturer at all. She's a happy camper, realizing that she can start using her favorite cutter again.  :-) 

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