Photo of Debbie Caffrey

Cut to It: Strategies for Smarter Quilting

with Debbie Caffrey
Cut to It: Strategies for Smarter Quilting
Master your rotary cutter and rulers to create the projects you desire — faster than ever. Learn to cut all the units you need swiftly, accurately and safely.

Join pattern designer Debbie Caffrey to discover her efficient, expert cutting techniques for both beginner and experienced quilters. Set up an ergonomic workspace and position your hands correctly to keep your ruler in place and your fingers safe. Discover speedy tips for cutting strips, four-patches, diamonds and chevrons. Use quarter, half-square and Tri-Recs rulers to quickly create perfect half and quarter-square triangles, Flying Geese, trapezoids and more. Transform squares into Delectable Mountain and split nine-patch blocks. Create perfect half-square triangles with a bias-strip pieced method. Plus, get charts you can use to adapt these units to any size project. Learn clever cutting techniques for pre-cuts and yardage and finish your next, favorite quilt sooner.

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Lesson plan


Lesson 1. Getting Started

  • Meet your instructor, quilting teacher and author Debbie Caffrey, as you learn how to set up your crafting space to prepare for the techniques you’ll learn in class. Debbie starts by demonstrating the best ways to hold your ruler to ensure stability and safety. Then she explains how to start measuring and cutting fabrics neatly and efficiently, ending with perfectly sized diamonds, chevrons, rectangles and more.


Lesson 2. Striply Speaking

  • Discover ways to cut triangles efficiently, resulting in almost no wasted fabric! Learn how to use pre-cuts, including ways to select and store your pre-cut fabrics. Debbie walks you through a wide variety of triangle tools and the best uses for each before demonstrating how to measure and cut your fabrics in an assembly line.


Lesson 3. Working on Your Traps

  • Move from triangles to trapezoids as you create darling tree blocks. Debbie covers Tri-Recs tools, a pair of triangle tools that allow you to create triangular or trapezoidal units (and more)! You’ll learn how to measure, cut and sew your units with Debbie’s troubleshooting tips along the way. Explore a diverse range of design options before learning how to assemble Debbie’s tree blocks!


Lesson 4. Shape Up Your Fat Quarters

  • Continue to develop fast and efficient cutting skills as Debbie walks you through a block that is a perfect fit for fat quarters. You’ll learn how to use paper templates to create a Diamond in the Rough block that will feel right at home in Debbie’s Journey Home quilt, or any other quilt of your choice. Debbie walks you through each step of calculating the measurements you’ll need before measuring and cutting your fat quarters with ease.


Lesson 5. Delectable Mountain

  • Dive into a Delectable Mountain block that can be customized to your liking! Layer, cut and square up your pieces before assembling units ranging from small Hill blocks, denser Appalachian Mountain blocks, or steep and narrow Rocky Mountain blocks. Choose the ones you like best to make a block or border for your next project!


Lesson 6. It's Hip to be Square

  • Discover even more fun ways to work with squares as you take half-square triangles and cut them into dark, light and mini-half-square triangles. The design possibilities are endless with your new mini-units, and Debbie explains helpful tips along the way for measuring, cutting and piecing. Next, take on a split Nine-Patch block using similar mixing and matching methods for your units. You’ll finish by learning Debbie’s secrets for creating a gorgeous Leaf block that incorporates all of your new cutting skills!


Lesson 7. It Might Be Biased

  • Finish the class as you work with fat quarters again — this time to create bias-strip half-square triangle units. Debbie walks you through ways to measure and cut units that look complex but can be a lot of fun in the making. Finish the class with a final round of design ideas that will leave you excited to start your next quilting project!

"Really pleased with this class. Not only does it teach you how to use the rulers, but also many, many techniques for fast construction of different quilt designs. As a new quilter of only twelve months, this class will take me from following other designers patterns to designing my own patterns with speed and confidence. The class provides much more than I expected and is good value for money."
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  • 7 HD video lessons with anytime, anywhere access
  • Downloadable instructions and size charts
  • Hours of close-up instruction
  • Answers from Debbie in our virtual classroom


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