This is the first of several Quilting with the Big Shot tutorials that I will be doing with the assistance of my fabulous & wonderful quilting Mama! My Mom's name is Stephanie and she has been quilting for about 15 years. I told her about the Big Shot and how it can be used for quilting a few months ago after Linda's amazing demonstration on Quilting with the Big Shot at the London Stampin' Up Regionals. Ever since then, I've been planning projects for us to make.
First - I'm going to show you how to fussy cut with the Big Shot. This Big Shot die is called Scallop circle #2. If you click the photograph you will be able to see the two scallop circles on this die. We will be using the larger of the two scallop circles. The Big Shot will cut through many fabrics: cottons, denims, polyesters, felts, chenilles, quilt batting and many other fabrics. It will also cut through thin wood, aluminum siding, tin cans, and more. It's not just for papercrafting! The Big Shot is made by Sizzix and sold through Stampin' Up, so if you would like to order one please email me.
When you have a fabric that has a nice pattern on it, and you want to highlight & cut out one image on that fabric, it's called Fussy cutting. Because you're being fussy about what you're cutting out of the fabric. In this case, we're fussing cutting a zebra out of a great fabric for a baby boy's quilt. (No, I'm not expecting - we still haven't got the go ahead from my doctors because of my neck). The zebra shown here is what we want our final result to look like - a Zebra that is cut out perfectly centered in a scallop circle.
This is how we acheived the fussy cut. First we had to built a frame so we could properly position the fabric on the die. I did this with a paper matte. I just used scrap paper, wrapped it underneath the die and taped it to the backside. This way it doesn't slip/move. Then I wrapped the paper firmly around to the front foam of the die. I ran this through the Big Shot to cut the circles out of the paper.
Next, I used this paper matte as a guide. I placed my fabric underneath the paper (on top of the foam die) and moved around the fabric until the zebra was perfectly centered within the paper matte. By having the paper taped underneath my matte doesn't move and I'm able to see exactly where the fabric will be cut - making a perfectly cut Zebra.
Once I had it centered, I put on the plastic plates and ran it through the Big Shot. Running cotton through the Big Shot wasn't a challenge - it went through perfectly fine. I did notice with some different fabrics that the dies were not cutting perfectly so what I did to fix this was build the "sandwich" of plates a little thicker - I did this by putting a few pieces of cotton under the bottom plate.
So here's the finished cut zebra. I hope that the little tutorial gave you a few ideas about how to use your Big Shot for non-papercrafting needs. I will post the finished baby quilt once we've finished sewing the chenille on - it's super soft and really adorable.
Once everything was cut out, my Mom went to work sewing the quilt together. I love all of the little animals on it, and Rachel is now able to identify them all - and they all have names now. So cute!
The chenille on the quilt is super soft. Whenever we put the quilt on the ground, Rachel grabs all of her little people animals and puts them on the areas with her "matching animal" on it.
Here is a view of the full finished quilt: