Preparing your Quilt Top

Preparing Your Quilt for Longarm Quilting

You’ve worked hard on your beautiful quilt, and I will do the best work I can to respectfully quilt your treasure.

Here are some tips to prepare your quilt top for longarm quilting:
  • Press your top as best you can.  Press seams flat (either to one side or open, but flat!) – press from the front too.  This is a good time to check your quilt top for any open seams.
  • If you have seams coming to the edge of your top, you can stay-stitch all around the quilt top.  This will help prevent those seams from unravelling, or getting caught in the longarm hopping foot, and will also help control stretching of that edge.
  • Remove any dangly threads from the back of the quilt top.  Fraying threads, or long tails from piecing, may show up behind light fabrics after the quilting is complete.
  • Check your quilt top for any open seams.
  • Only add any embellishments to your quilt after it has been quilted!
  • Mark the “Top” of your quilt top if it has a top.  If your backing has a top, mark that too. 
  • Please do *NOT* baste your quilt top/batting/backing together in any way!  Each piece is loaded onto the longarm machine separately.

Backing:
  • The backing is attached to the longarm leaders and sides.  This requires at least four (4) inches /10 cm of available fabric, outside your quilt top, on *each* side.  
  • Measure your quilt top, then add 8” (20 cm) to the width and length.  This is how big your backing must be.  For example, a 60” x 80” quilt top needs backing that is at least 68” x 88”.
  • Backing needs to be square.  The best way to achieve this is to RIP the backing when it is being cut.
  • You can provide your own backing, or you can purchase backing from me.
  • I am happy to quilt pieced backing, and will load pieced backings with the longest seams along the longarm rails whenever possible.  This keeps the tension even across the quilt as it is being quilted.
    • Pieced backing can be lots of fun, and result in a reversible quilt.  Please keep the pieces BIG! 
    • Seams in pieced backings should be pressed OPEN, and should be ½” seams, not ¼” seams.
    • I cannot guarantee that a pieced backing will be perfectly centred to your quilt top. 
  • Press your backing as best you can.

Batting:
  • Batting also needs to extend 4” beyond the quilt top on all sides.  Use the same measurements for batting as you do for backing.
  • Extra batting along the edge is where I will test the tension to ensure perfect tension for the thread used in your quilt.
  • You can provide your own batting or purchase batting from me.  I carry a variety of Quilters’ Dream batting types.  My favourite is Quilters’ Dream 100% cotton select. 
  • My current battings from Quilters' Dream
    • 100% cotton (white) select loft
    • 70/30
    • Pink (80/20)
    • Wool
Thread:
  • I will supply the thread!  I have a lovely variety of excellent quality thread that I know works in my machine.  There is no additional charge for thread.
  • We will discuss the thread type, weight and colour during the intake process.

Quilting Design:
  • There are so many options!  I can free motion quilt, apply a manual pantograph, or a computerized pantograph.  I love ruler work!
  • We will work together to decide the perfect quilting design for your quilt top.


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