One of the biggest hassles when working on a sewing project is cutting out all of the fabric pieces. The rotary cutter, however, was designed to make this task faster, and it offers other benefits, too. When using a rotary cutter, self-healing mat, and weights to cut pattern pieces, it takes half the time of the typical pins and shears method.
Choosing a Rotary Cutter
Rotary cutters come in several sizes. The larger ones are good for long straight cuts which makes them perfect for quilters who need to have very accurate cuts. Smaller rotary cutters are better for cutting out pattern pieces with a lot of curves, since they can maneuver more easily.
It is best to have a variety of sizes in your sewing kit to switch between, but comfort also plays a part in choosing a rotary cutter. Some cutters require the user to squeeze the handle, while others have a simple button to move the blade safety guard. The best one is really up to individual preferences.
Another thing to keep in mind when choosing a rotary cutter is the price of replacement parts. Some blades cost more than others and some are easier to change, too. Olfa is a good brand to try, especially for someone that has never owned a rotary cutter before
Taking Care of Rotary Cutters
Special care should be taken to prolong the life of your rotary cutter and mat. When the blade of a rotary cutter becomes dull, it needs to be replaced. Using a dull blade can result in a damaged cutting mat, not to mention it doesn’t cut fabric as well.
If replacing the blade does not improve how well the rotary cutter is working, make sure the nut is tight and that the cutter hasn’t been damaged in any way. Rotary cutter will wear out over time.
Store the rotary cutter in a safe place where children cannot reach it. Also, be sure that the blade safety guard is on when the cutter is not being used. Rotary cutters are sharp and should be handled with care.
How to Use a Rotary Cutter
In order to use a rotary cutter, you’ll need a mat and ruler. Self-healing mats are the most popular and don’t have to be replaced very often.
To begin, place the fabric on the cutting mat and use weights to hold the pattern pieces in place. Then, begin by bringing the rotary cutter one inch away from the fabric to encourage a smooth cut from the start. Guide the rotary cutter around the pattern pieces, using a ruler when necessary, and mark notches as you go with a fabric marking pen.
There are many advantages to using a rotary cutter instead of sewing shears. One of the biggest advantages is that the hand does not become tired as easily because there is not repetitive motion that requires much force like there is when cutting out a pattern with shears. Also, a rotary cutter allows for multiple projects to be cut out at one time, saving even more time.
Use a rotary cutter to save time on sewing projects and make more accurate cuts. The overall quality of a project will be much better than cutting the traditional way. You can find rotary cutters for sale at local fabric stores or online. It is an investment worth making for someone who does a lot of sewing and quilting.