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Member postings for Hilary Gooding

Here is a list of all the postings Hilary Gooding has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Inches or centimetres?
31/07/2008 07:37:00

I know exactly what you mean.  I 'vizualize' weights:  250 grams is half a pound of butter or 8 oz!   It's all a matter of how often you have to use each system - I guess if I was a chef I might be able to 'chop' and change without thinking (sorry about the pun).

But there again - the advice against mixing measurements in a single recipe holds true for patchwork as well - I wouldn't mix imperial and metric in one pattern - I would stick to one or the other throughout!   Hilary

21/06/2008 09:52:00
I agree it's confusing.  But 10cm is only 4" and how many times would you want to divide 4"?  The equivalent of 12" is 30cm and you can divide that by 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10 and 12!  I don't find cutting measurements of eighths any more easy/difficult than finding 0.25cm (1/8") on a ruler.  It's all a matter of what you start with and find comfortable.  My comment about publishing in both systems is:  as long as they don't convert literally and expect quilters to find 0.36cm on a ruler for example.  There is definitely room for both systems.  Happy quilting,  Hilary
02/03/2008 17:06:00

Well, if you think that 1/4" is actually 0.64cm, then there is a bigger jump scaling down to 0.5cm than there is up to 0.75cm.  It hardly shows and the #1 Bernina foot is a perfect 0.75cm width! (Not the feet for the models that stitch 1cm wide satin stitch)

Germany is a mixture of imperial and metric - the older generation got used to working with inches because that's all they could lay their hands on book and ruler-wise.  But the newer and younger quilters have plenty of metric books and patterns available to them nowadays. France has produced an impressive number of their own books as well.

In 1991 Donna Lynn Thomas published a book 'Shortcuts - A concise Guide to Metric Rotary Cutting' with That Patchwork Place.  Her husband was in the US Army and based in Frankfurt.  She had the support and backing of Yolande Machemer, and TPP even brought out a metric Bias Square to go with it.  The Shortcuts book came out in Imperial and Metric and was translated into many languages.  And that was the beginning.  After that Omnigrid was persuaded to bring out metric rulers and mats.  Many other classic patchwork primers were translated and converted - 'Quilts, Quilts, Quilts' by Diana McClun and Laura Knownes was among the first.

I still relate weights to half a pound of butter when I'm baking - that's 250-ish grams - and because we have lived around the the world, I have had to get used to gas mark, centigrade, fahrenheid, cups, ozs and grams, lbs and stones, kgs and kms!  Who says life is boring? 

Anyway, have fun if you do try and have a go at metric sewing - after all, who ever found cutting and sewing in eighths of an inch easy?!  Hilary

29/02/2008 17:29:00

I grew up in South Africa and wrote the equivalent of GCE in imperial and A-levels in metric.  As an architectural draughtswoman I worked solely in metric.  Then I came to Europe and became involved in converting patchwork patterns and books from imperial to metric for a large patchwork shop in Germany.  We were one of the first, if not the first.  Seam allowances in Germany are 0.75cm - 0.5 cm is too narrow.  In Europe every rotary cutting ruler you can get in imperial is available in a metric version.  I find working in metric is as easy as working in inches - but I started young. 

Using 0.75cm seam allowances it is possible to work with all the well known shortcut methods: add 2.5cm to the finished size for half-square-triangle-units and 3.5cm for quarter-squares.

A 12 inch block becomes a 30cm block (not a 30.5cm block) which is very easy to divide by 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10 - much more flexible than 12 inches.  When converting to metric it is necessary to re-draught the block - you cannot just multiply by 2.54 and cross your fingers.  And I don't know of a single ruler that is marked with 6mm.

 I personally hope the EU allows us to carry on working and providing patterns in imperial - or are they going to stop the import of anything with imperial in?


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