Today we will be talking about how to prepare your quilt pieces before you baste.
First off, when you finish a quilt top, I highly recommend sewing a straight stitch or a small zig zag around the perimeter of the quilt. This will prevent the seams from splitting before/while you quilt it. It only takes a few minutes at the most and it prevents a lot of problems down the line. If you've ever quilted something where the seams have started coming apart on the edges, you know what I'm talking about and why this is so important!
Flip the quilt top over (on a clean surface) and de-thread. This quilt is a good example why this step is so important. It has dark colored blocks on a white background. Any stray threads can/will show through the white. It's frustrating to finish a quilt and see stray threads in the white areas. This is a slow and tedious process, but I have found that having a thread catcher, a sharp thread snips and a bit of duct tape help a lot.
Eventually, your quilt should be de-threaded and lint free. Doesn't that look so much better?
De-thread the backing as well, especially in cases like this, where the bright pink and white are adjacent to each other.Picadilly quilt. Those little bits of fuzz from the jelly roll ended up EVERYWHERE!
I had a question about how to piece a quilt back, so I thought I would cover that briefly this week, as well. When I am piecing a quilt back, I usually start by placing my quilt top on the floor, face up. It acts as a guide or template, if you will. My goal is to make the quilt back about 1"-2" larger on all sides. I rummage through my stash and layer/arrange any fabric I think may be suitable on top of it, designing as I go. Once I am pleased with the arrangement, I sew it up. I love a pieced back because I tend to let go of the "rules" and make do with what I have. It is a fun process because the results are always a surprise!
So, I trimmed off the seam allowances on the top horizontal strip (as opposed to stitch ripping!) and sewed it together again. It's only slightly smaller now, but to me it made a big difference. I also inserted another horizontal strip of bright pink toward the bottom. I like it much better after a few edits! It looks even better on the back of the quilt now that it is finished.
Next week we will talk about everyone's favorite....basting! Ha! Actually, after de-threading a white and navy quilt, basting is a piece of cake!
If you have any questions, I will try to answer them in the comments.
If you missed last week's post, you can find it here:
Machine Quilting 101:Introduction