Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric... Welcome to the Patriotic Quilter where I like to share all things quilty as well as red, white, and blue! Please feel free to look around and enjoy yourself! I would love to hear from you.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Bounce Borders

So when you set out to do a new project, do you glance at the photo and start cutting?  Or do you briefly peruse the pattern and start cutting?   Or are you like me and read the whole thing from start to finish before you do anything else?  I freely admit that I'm a geek that way, but I am what I am. 

While reading the instructions for the Bounce border, I noted that Carrie mentioned that the edges may get raggedy, and if it is bothering you, you can easily trim it.  To make the border, you piece strip sets and crosscut them and then sew them randomly together.  Once again, the pattern allows for a variation--you can do all the subcutting the same width, or vary them.  I decided to vary, primarily because I knew I was resizing the quilt and I wasn't sure how the border would play out.  I thought if I have different widths of sections I could more easily fudge something if the border didn't come out exact.  I also really like the "playfulness" of the random widths of sections. 
So above is a completed border strip.  You can see that the segments are different widths, however, what I would like you to notice is that the edges are a bit raggedy/uneven.  It doesn't look too bad in this photo, but trust me, along the entire length of the strip, the edges were a problem.
So Carrie said to "trim it."  Hmmm, how was I going to do that?  I was trying to work out in my mind just how I could trim a very long border strip without it being too much trouble.  And then I remembered that I have a 4" wide ruler (that I hardly use.)  The border strip was 4.25" wide, so trimming to 4" should take care of those pesky edges without losing too much fabric.
I lined up the ruler to make sure that it was running down the center of the strip, leaving the excess bits on each side.
I also was careful to keep the straight edge of the ruler or one of the lines oriented over a seam, so the whole thing didn't go wonky. 
Then it was just a matter of trimming one side.  (Hint:  do this on a table or counter where you can access your cutting from both sides, so you don't have to move everything to cut the other side.  Just walk around to the other side of the table.)
Here I am on the other side of the ruler.  You can see the tail on the left of the first side that I cut.  Now I will cut the excess away on the right side.  (I'm right handed)
Once both sides were trimmed, I picked up the ruler to move it further down the border, again taking care to line up the ruler lines with the segment's seam allowances.
Another important hint is to be careful as you are working your way down the length of border that you don't let the rotary cutter run off the edge of the ruler.  I learned this one the hard way, but luckily my oops wasn't too bad...
This is what can happen if you aren't careful!
Once it is finished, it looks so great with the clean edges! 
 It left behind quite a pile on my mat, though.
So if you do trim you borders, you have to adjust the size of the corner square from 4.25 to 4".  That was a really easy correction to make and it made for much easier piecing.
I hope this helps you if you are working on Bounce.  The four inch wide ruler was a lifesaver.
Have a great day,

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