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Thread: How do I square a quilt top?

  1. #11
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    I hope my quilts are close enough to square before I quilt it. It gets a bit off after the quilting process so I use a large square to get the corners looking good and say that it is good enough for me. I don't put quilts up for competition and those that receive them would never even think to check to see if they are squared up or not. After plenty of use, who would worry about it anyway?

  2. #12
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamae View Post
    On one of the quilt shows on tv a long time ago, I heard a quilter say she was going to enter a quilt into competition and it would be judged for being square. she said to make hers work she laid it on the floor (undoubtedly waterproof) and spritzed water on it and shaped it. Said it was nearly sopping wet by the time she was satisfied.
    This is called "blocking" and is actually a common practice. You definitely want to make sure your fabrics are bleed-proof and pins are rust-proof first, though. I know of one poor quilter who made an absolutely gorgeous quilt and blocked it. But when she blocked it, some of her batiks ran. So she soaked it in water and color catchers (and also Synthrapol, if I remember right) but then her pins rusted. Poor thing! She was able to work most of the stains out and it's won several awards since.

  3. #13
    Senior Member KerryK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjsews View Post
    I hope my quilts are close enough to square before I quilt it. It gets a bit off after the quilting process so I use a large square to get the corners looking good and say that it is good enough for me. I don't put quilts up for competition and those that receive them would never even think to check to see if they are squared up or not. After plenty of use, who would worry about it anyway?
    ^^^^^ What she said! :-)
    Kerry
    ~ American by birth, Southern by the grace of God ~

  4. #14
    Senior Member KerryK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjsews View Post
    I hope my quilts are close enough to square before I quilt it. It gets a bit off after the quilting process so I use a large square to get the corners looking good and say that it is good enough for me. I don't put quilts up for competition and those that receive them would never even think to check to see if they are squared up or not. After plenty of use, who would worry about it anyway?
    ^^^^^ What she said! :-)
    Kerry
    ~ American by birth, Southern by the grace of God ~

  5. #15
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    All great advice. Wished I'd seen it before I tried to square a quilt I was doing.....but I learned from my mistake and now use that to practice on. .

  6. #16
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    Thanks for all the advice. The borders haven't been put on yet, so I wanted it to be straightened out before I put them on. I'll reread all the ideas in the morning, when I'm more awake, and get this thing taken care of!

  7. #17
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by michelleoc View Post
    Thanks for all the advice. The borders haven't been put on yet, so I wanted it to be straightened out before I put them on. I'll reread all the ideas in the morning, when I'm more awake, and get this thing taken care of!
    I thought you were talking about the top before the borders were put on and that's what I based my advice on.

    I square up a quilt after it's quilted with the biggest square ruler I have and my long ruler. I put my quilt on a long table with the mat under it and I usually use a couple of chairs on the side of the table to help hold the weight of the quilt and then trim it.

  8. #18
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    It depends on how wonky it is. Can you post a picture? If the quilt is slightly out at the edge, you can trim the edges straight if it doesn't impact the pattern. If the blocks themselves have B cup bulges, then it will be more trouble to fix. The quilt top blocks will need to be taken apart and squared up first.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by michelleoc View Post
    I sewed all my rows together on this quilt that I've had forever and the sides are all wonky. How do I square this thing up? Please used the simplest terms known to man (or woman): I'm old, I'm tired, I'm blonde and I'm left-handed. Everything seems a little harder for me than for others!


    Sounds like you have not attached borders (if you happen to be using them). If that is the case, just measure the center (from top to bottom) of the top to determine the length of the side borders. This is where you can ease in the excess onto the border strips. After doing that, repeat the process for the top and bottom borders. I have made quilt tops with or without borders and the sides are not always even due to the quilting which can pull in the fabric. I square if off where I can after quilting. If it is still needed, I ease in the excess when applying the binding.

  10. #20
    Super Member Buckeye Rose's Avatar
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    I think before I can give any good advice I need for you to describe "wonky". Are the sides not the same length? are they wavy? is the entire quilt just not in square? A pic would be most helpful.

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