Rotary Cutting Diamonds

October 14, 2011 § 7 Comments

Have you chosen the fabrics you want to use for the  Carpenter’s Wheel QAL?  If so, then you are ready to start cutting the diamond shapes. Yay!

You will need 32 diamond shapes.  I am making the large 7″ sized diamonds. But the method works the same for whatever size you choose to make.

1.  If you want to know if a scrap of fabric is big enough for the diamond shape, you can make a paper template to lay on top of the fabric.  Tape 2 – 8 1/2″ x 11″ sheets of paper together. If you are not in the U.S. then use the standard size copy or notebook paper.

2.  Cut a 7″ strip from the length of the paper.

3. Lay your paper on your cutting mat, matching the paper to the grid lines on the mat.  Place the corner of the paper at the edge of the 45 degree diagonal line. (Note, I left too much space at the corner and had to tape a little piece to the other end to make up the difference)  Be sure to start nearly at the corner of the paper.

4.  The 7″ diamond is pretty big and my ruler is only 6″ wide. So I rotated the piece of paper so that I could use the grid lines on my mat to cut.  Cut 7″ from the 45-degree edge.  This produces a diamond shape that is good for LeMoyne stars, Lone Stars and any other 8 pointed star blocks.

The short-cut method that beginners like to use is to make half-square triangles. This is a great method too, but it produces a short, squatty diamond.  If you want a truly diamond shape, then you can use this rotary cutting method instead of templates.

5. Now you can place your paper template on top of your fabric to see if it is a large enough scrap.

6. Let’s cut our fabric, okay?  Cut a 7″ wide strip from your fabric.

7. Cut a 45-degree angle from the edge of the fabric strip.

8. Cut 7″ from the 45-degree edge to produce a diamond shape.

9.  If you are using  2 1/2″ strips you can just cut them with your ruler. Cut the first 45-degree angle. Then place your ruler 2 1/2″ from the edge of the angled cut and make another cut to create the diamond.

If you are using the 4″ strips, then place your ruler 4″ from the 45-degree edge.  You can use this method to make any size diamond that you would like.

I think I may have cut 4 1/2″ strips for the Lone Star I gave to my niece-in-law and possibly 2″ strips for the Mini Lone Star quilt.  You’ll just need to do your own math if you venture out beyond the 3 sizes for this quilt-along.

These diamonds are the foundation of the Carpenter’s Wheel block and you will need to cut 32.  As always, feel free to share your progress in the BW Quilt-Along Flickr group.

Next up will be the cutting of the background pieces… oh, let’s say in a couple of weeks. How does that sound?

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§ 7 Responses to Rotary Cutting Diamonds

  • Blue.Ridge.Girl says:

    Okay, so I just made a paper template of the diamond for the large size quilt…this is one seriously large diamond! This is going to be so much fun!! Can’t wait to start cutting my fabric :o)

  • Blue.Ridge.Girl says:

    Question…should we be concerned about cutting on the length-wise or cross-wise grain? Does it matter if some are one way and some the other?

  • After hanging around about this I thought, I should have a go. I cut all my fabrics yesterday for the 4in option to sew four blocks! I can’t promise to keep on track, but it’s a good motivation to stitch a block I have long admired! Thanks for the great tutorials!

  • izzy says:

    Oh good LORD!!! has anyone ever deleted themselves accidentally? I did! I dont know how but I was in my dashboard trying to delete an old blog and it switched names on me and I deleted my blog , then it would not allow me to use the name again LOL LOL !!! So anyway here I am yet AGAIN !!!!
    http://underthlighthousequilting.blogspot.com/
    so sorry for the confusion…

  • Angela Cook says:

    I had a lovely time doing your medallion quilt although I am still looking at it to work out how I want to quilt it. So I thought I would try this but I’m having trouble draughting the diamond shape. Could you tell me how long the side of the diamond is? I’ve crumpled up several tries so far.

    • Anita says:

      I had to go cut another myself to see what the measurement was. It looks like it is just a hair less than 9 7/8″. Hope this helps!

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