I have loved playing around with my AccuQuilt GO! more over the last month and wanted to share a few insights and answer some common questions I’ve had since my first blog post.
One question I’ve had multiple times is: “Do you have more fabric waste cutting fabric with the AccuQuilt?” Now, I’m not a long time AccuQuilt user yet, but I’ve found that in many cases, I end up actually saving quite a bit of fabric. Surprised? Let me explain.
When I cut and sew flying geese blocks, I usually use the method shown below (cut out a rectangle plus two squares, sew the squares on the diagonal then trim off the excess corner). It’s by far the most common way I make flying geese because I feel like I get accurate blocks.
Well, when using the AccuQuilt GO!, instead of cutting out a rectangle for the base, the die cuts out a larger triangle for the base of the flying geese (see die below–it brilliantly cuts out four at a time). With the size of fabric square I used below, I could either get two rectangle bases (cut my regular way above) or four triangle bases! Ummm, I think I’d rather have the four flying geese bases, please. 🙂
Then instead of cutting out squares that get partially trimmed off after sewing, again the AccuQuilt cuts out perfectly sized triangles to fit with the base triangle.
Sewing the flying geese units together this way is a breeze! Everything is cut exactly to size, no trimming off excess corners, and no need to even trim dog ears off the triangles after because as you can see, the pieces are already notched.
I quickly realized that when sewing flying geese, I’m saving a ton of fabric (I end up using just a little over half as much fabric as when I do flying geese my regular way!).
Another way that I’ve found I’m saving a lot of fabric is that I’m using my scraps a lot more efficiently! I can easily throw a few layers of scraps onto a die and quickly cut out a bunch of pieces at one time. There are even scraps that I normally would toss, but now I’ve been saving to cut up into 2-1/2″ squares because I can do it quickly and accurately with one of my AccuQuilt dies. The star blocks in the photo below were actually cut entirely out of scraps from another project! It really doesn’t take much fabric to cut out enough pieces for a block–especially when the AccuQuilt is cutting them the exact size and shape you need. 🙂
I’ve also had a few questions about how much time it takes to cut out pieces with the AccuQuilt vs. regular methods. There are definitely situations when the AccuQuilt is saving me a bunch of time. As I mentioned above, when cutting out scraps, it’s hands-down so much faster to use the AccuQuilt! I don’t have to sit and fiddle with tiny pieces that need to be trimmed on all four sides. With the AccuQuilt, it’s just stack them on top of the die (up to six layers) and run it through the machine.
Now, let’s talk about accuracy for a minute. It seems pretty intuitive that a machine like AccuQuilt would be more accurate than a human cutting fabric by hand, but I have a fun example of just how helpful the AccuQuilt can be in terms of accurate cutting.
I’ve had a piece of gorgeous Rifle Paper Company rayon for awhile now and haven’t known what to do with it. If you haven’t played with rayon, it’s slippery and a bit stretchy and harder to work with than quilting cotton. I envisioned some pretty blocks with the floral, but knew trying to cut it with a rotary cutter wouldn’t work out too well. I almost tossed it a couple times when I realized that I should try putting it through my AccuQuilt to see how it worked.
I paired up the Rifle Paper Company floral with this Moda Essential Dots print and cut a few half-square triangles out of each print. I was thrilled to see the triangles come out so clean cut and straight!
Sewing the pairs of triangles together went pretty well and I ended up with these perfectly sized half-square triangles (no need to trim to size! Yippee!) These cute little blocks started out as an experiment, but after seeing how easily I could cut out the rayon with the AccuQuilt, I wanted to make more half-square triangles!
So I kept going until I had enough for a pillow cover. I am thrilled with how it turned out and so glad that I had the thought to use my AccuQuilt on the fussy (but gorgeous) rayon floral.
If you have any other questions for me, please leave a comment below! As I mentioned before, I’m not super experienced with the AccuQuilt GO! system, but I will do my best to answer any questions you have. 🙂