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Quilt Preparation


Tips from a Professional Longarmer

Preparing your quilt for machine Quilting by Cate Tallman-Evans in the publication “THE QUILTER”  January 2010 issue tells it how it should be done.

Preparing the quilt top is the first step.   To begin with, make sure the top is well pressed and that seam allowances lie flat.  If the top is stretched out of shape, it is nearly impossible to fix it.   so press carefully.  Do not “scrub” the iron over the surface of the quilt top and keep the weight of the top supported while pressing.  Quilts set on point are more prone to stretch and, therefore, require extra care.

Lay the pressed top out on a large, flat surface or clean floor.  Note any areas of fullness, pay special attention to rippling borders.   It is a myth that wavy borders and large bubbles in the quilt surface can be “quilted out.”

Even a professional machine quilter is not a miracle worker.  If your quilt top does not lie more or less flat at this stage, adjust your seams or rework your borders so that it does.

Backing and  batting should be 4 inches  larger all the way around your quilt piece.  This allows the quilter the  batting and material to be able to hold the quilt in place to sew a fabulous design on your quilt

A lot of time and effort go into making a quilt and there is much more to it than simply piecing the top.  You can improve the quality of all our projects by planning ahead with each phase before you begin to work .

This planning, will add to the fun, enjoyment and sense of accomplishment you get from every quilt you have made at Country Boy Quilting.
Please remember puckered or uneven piecing or borders may not quilt nicely. Machine quilting a quilt that is squared with even borders and flat pressed seams produces a lovely keepsake.

Other suggestions:

Quilt top, batting and backing should not be pinned together.  Quilt top, batting and backing should be separated when being brought to the long arm quilter

Trim away all stray threads, we realize that you might not clip them all.
Loose threads should be trimmed, as they can show through light fabrics and can cause uneven stitching, snagging or even damage your quilt.

Ironing your quilt top is very important.   Many long arm quilters will refuse to quilt on non-ironed quilts.  If we must iron your quilt, charges will incur.

If your edges are fraying, please sew  or serge around them

Check all seams to be sure none are loose

Back stitching all seams that come to edge of quilt would make them secure

If your backing needs to be pieced, please do so or a $5 charge will incur for each seam. If your backing is in pieces please tell us which way you want the seams to be placed, vertical or horizontal. Please do not use sheets for backing.

Pin a piece of paper marked with pencil, not ink, with a safety pin to the edge you consider to be the top of your quilt and also do this with the backing.
Items, such as buttons, pins, sequins, couching, etc., should NOT be part of the quilt top.


Remember borders that are improperly sewn so that they do not lay flat may cause puckers and or pleats

Questions? Contact us at Country Boy Quilting

CREDITS: Cate Tallman-Evans & publication “THE QUILTER” 

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