How To: Cut fabric

Cut fabric

You've finally found the perfect fabric for that new dress – don't let careless cutting ruin your project.
You Will Need
* Fabric
* Laundry detergent
* An iron
* An ironing board
* Sewing chalk
* Pins
* A pattern
* Scissors
* Padding for table (optional)
* Foam (optional)
* Felt (optional)
* Muslin (optional)
* Craft paper (optional)
* A dryer sheet (optional)

Step 1
Wash and dry your fabric to preshrink it.

Step 2
Iron your fabric to get rid of any wrinkles.

Cotton fabrics are easier to iron when they're a little damp.

Step 3
Decide which side of the fabric is the right side. It's not always any easy choice. Once you figure it out, mark the right side with sewing chalk or a pin.

Step 4
Fold the material in half as instructed by your pattern and lay it on a flat surface, such as a padded table or the floor. Square your edges and smooth out any wrinkles or bubbles.

Step 5
Pin the pattern pieces on the fabric. Make sure you pin both sides together.

To keep slippery fabrics from sliding when you cut, put a thin piece of foam, felt, muslin, or craft paper between the two sides and on the bottom and pin to the fabric and pattern.

Step 6
Cut your fabric following the pattern instructions. Use long, smooth cutting strokes and, for a smoother finish, don't let the scissor tips close completely.

Invest in a good pair of scissors and, before each project, wipe the blades with a dryer sheet for easier cuts.

Step 7
Check your edges before picking up the pieces. You may need to do some additional trimming before removing the pattern.

Fact: European fabric merchant Scabal has created extremely expensive fabrics – one with diamond fragments and another using 22-carat gold thread.

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