Cutting for Quilting



I have some friends and family that like to quilt. I’ve heard them complain about how long it takes to cut out their patterns so that they can sew them together later. I hear the cutting part takes the longest and I was wondering if the #glowforge would be able to cut fabrics without burning them. I know some fabrics fray and I was wondering if the cuts with the laser would stop those or hinder them from fraying as much. Thanks in advance!


I have heard that laser cutting fabric is amazing for those very reasons.
@smcgathyfay might know a lot more then me. Not to put her on the spot, but she IS the laser lady after all. :wink:


There are a few topics regarding cutting fabric. It will be wonderful for appliques or cutwork.


Yes, cutting fabric is awesome with a laser!! No freying, it seals the edge. I’ve done fleece, cotton, felt, polyester, twill and others I cant think of atm…lol
I’ll see if I can find pics but if not, I’m sure I can cut some on Monday…
Its great for applique…just iron on the fusable film and cut away😀

Cutting sewing patterns

Any suggestions on how to cut larger pieces of fabric using the pass-through feature on the Pro? I suppose the fabric would have to be placed on a carrier board of some kind…


I wonder if, for quilting, somebody has already written software that will do all the seam allowances from the original pieces, and corner divots to simplify piecing. (My spouse is a quilter, and is definitely interested.

@smcgathyfay Does it seal for cotton, or just do a regular nice cut? That’s the material my spouse uses most often. (Sometimes regular, sometimes the custom-printed stuff you can do online)


Dont know of any software that does what you describe but using contour to make the seam allowances works well.
Quilting fabric cuts great and yes, the edges seal well enough for sewing.


One tip I use are little dime sized rare earth magnets on the fabric. That holds it down to the bed and they’re thin enough the head doesn’t whack into them. It keeps the fabric taut & in place when doing intricate cuts & keeps the air assist from blowing the material around too.

I do the same with paper to keep it from moving around.

The magnets are sheathed in some type of chromed steel so they don’t make marks on the material either.


We haven’t tested the passthrough with fabric, but I suspect it’ll work well with a rigid backer (e.g. tape it to a board) and we might be able to craft software magic someday to make it work without.


Here is a post I made about quilts. My Sis and Mom are both interested in possible fabric cut out kits that might be possible with Glowforge.


This is also one of the things I’m also looking forward to. Some creative folding and ironing may be in order for larger pieces.


Gotta say, I’m super stoked about this, too.
I don’t quilt much unless I’m doing it with my sister.

I don’t cut straight. (I don’t hammer straight, I don’t drill straight… ) And I don’t have good cutting tools until sometime before December 31.

I can sew straight, though. I’m looking forward to this.


There’s a feature for “the hopper” recognize cut pattern pieces pinned to fabric and have built in “knowledge” on how to cut it. Totally doable with the camera!


I don’t know how the “trace” feature is planned now, but if you had a preview with provisions for “don’t make this cut/mark” or a provision for exporting for a quick edit, that would be perfect. You could just go around turning off cut/mark for the pattern paper edges, for the print and so forth. It would take a few minutes, but total worth it…


Perhaps there will be a market for cut files for different patterns.


I wonder if (eventually) patterns for laser cutting will end up quite different from conventional patterns today. From what I’ve seen on my spouse’s sewing table, shapes are at least somewhat constrained by what outlines are reasonable to follow with shears or a rotary cutter. (Ooh, here’s an idea for a materials person: an IR-sensitive washout dye/pigment/whatever so that you could put exact stitching lines etc on a piece the way people now do with chalk or markers.)


There are already companies that print the shapes onto fabric and the laser edge cuts them for garments.


If you search on Etsy, you’ll find a lot of laser cut fabric for quilting, both for piecing and applique. But I am looking forward to designing very lacy, intricate designs for applique. I really like some of the cut paper work that I’ve seen.


I make handbags from patterns and quilts on occasion - one of my side projects is drafting designs to laser-ready formats (with designer ok) and producing acrylic templates for people to use with their rotary cutters. One of the most exciting things in home sewing/crafting recently touches on the more complicated shapes we see in bag designs - people are using computerised machines like the Silhouette Cameo and/or Brother Scan N Cut to do the more fiddly pieces, especially in vinyl or leather. The Glowforge is going to open a whole new vista on this to people (although I’m personally concerned about people failing to practice safety in materials choice for the laser). The cutting-plotter type machines mentioned above are fantastic but they have limitations in materials and resolution that the Glowforge will blow past.

I’m also excited to get my Glowforge after seeing some of the things that can be done with PU heat transfer materials, currently also a little limited when using a cutter-plotter as you have to manually weed the design after cutting - but with a laser you can just burn those areas away allowing for far more intricate designs.


I hear you. I have a Brother Scan-n-cut (original version) and while it does have some nice features, I’m disappointed at how quickly the blades get dull. I literally have to change the blade for each project (at $10-12 a pop) when I’m using my preferred heavy duty card stock. And the difficulty of getting the card stock to stay in place for the whole cut is another problem. REALLY looking forward to my Glowforge.