Quilting Services

Quilting Services > Preparation for Quilting

Preparation for Quilting

To prewash or not to prewash? Whether to prewash your quilt top and backing or not is a preference - there is no right or wrong answer. You should, however, be consistent and wash all or nothing, including the batting. Because unquilted batting is difficult to wash without damaging it, I generally prefer not to prewash. Here is a helpful article with points to consider: http://www.connectingthreads.com/tutorials/To_Prewash_or_Not_to_Prewash__D85.html

The quilt top Remove all loose threads. Inspect carefully for open seams that may have come loose during handling, and repair them if necessary. If I don't notice them, the computerized quilting system could catch them and damage the quilt.

Borders As quilters, we have all faced challenges with borders at one time or another. As you check your quilt top to insure it is ready to quilting, lay it on a flat surface, such as the floor or a bed or a large table. Do your borders lay flat or are they wavy? If they are only slightly wavy, I do have a few tricks up my sleeve and I may be able to work with them. Depending on the circumstances, this may or may not require an additional fee. If the borders are excessively wavy, you should remove, resize and reattach them prior to quilting.

Pressing You will want to insure that both your quilt top and your back are carefully pressed and all seams are flat. Using starch or sizing is really helpful (but not required), as it makes it easier to work with and quilt. Fold neatly. I may give your quilt top and back a light press once more before loading onto the frame if needed, but it needs to be pretty well pressed already.

Backing Remove all loose threads. Your backing should be a minimum of 4" wider than the quilt top on all sides (but need not exceed 6"). In other words, if your quilt top is 90" x 100", your backing should be at least 98" x 108". Please take the time to square the backing. This is very important for insuring your quilt loads square on the frame. If you will need to piece the backing, you should cut off the selvedge edges on the edges that will be sewn together to make a seam. Selvedge edges are usually a little thicker and bulker than the rest of the fabric, and a this bulkiness will be noticeable in the finished quilt. Also, they shrink at a different rate when the quilt is washed, creating a puckered line. Also, make the seams 1/2" (rather than than the 1/4" seams on the top) and press the seam open.

Batting If you are providing your own batting, make sure the piece you plan to use is at least 3" wider (but no more than 6" wider) than the quilt top on all sides. That means if your quilt top is 90" x 100", your batting should be at least 96" x 106".

The quilt sandwich Don't baste or pin the quilt layers together. Basting will be done on the longarm frame. If your quilt top or backing are directional, mark the top center with a large and obvious note attached by safety pin. Make sure you remember to mention it also.