All the patterns say “Square Your Fabric” but what does it mean!? Often when it has been cut in a shop, it comes to you less than straight, and before you can easily use your rotary cutter you need to get a straight edge to work with!

This piece had some extra funky folds in it, looked like they had been on the bolt that way too – makes it a great example!
1. Press your fabric. I like to use lots of spray starch, any old spray starch I can find on sale.
2. Fold your fabric, selvage to selvage. In the picture above there is a bubble in the fold at the bottom.
3. Adjust your selvage edges until the fold lays flat. Use your fingers to scoot them one way or the other until it is happy.

4. Lay it down and get prepared to make a cut. Notice that the cut edges are NOT together.
5. I’m using home dec fabric that is 60″ wide so I need to fold a second time, usually not the case unless your cutting mat or ruler is smaller.
6. Line up your folded edge along a straight line on your cutting mat. Again, the cut edges are not lined up perfectly.

7. Check the depth, that you need to cut in order to have a continuous straight edge.
8. Bring on the ruler, and cut. Your fabric should be lined up straight on the bottom folded edge, and your ruler should be matched up with the grid lines.
9. You should have a nice edge to begin cutting your quilt pieces! If you are cutting more than a few strips, you will want to re-square your fabric often, especially if you feel your ruler slip. I typically re-square every 6-10″.
Because I’m sure someone will ask – Denyse Schmidt’s County Fair has been used in this tutorial, and I will be able to share this little project when it is completed!! No telling when that will be though :)

I hope that helps someone! Anyone have something to add?


Accurate cutting starts with squaring your fabric, before you cut your pieces. Learn how here! -