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Thread: LAers - How do I deal with rippling borders?

  1. #1
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    LAers - How do I deal with rippling borders?

    I have had my LA for about 8 months and before that I quilted with a domestic on a frame for about 4 years. Don't have a business but I have a lady for whom I have quilted several quilts - both on that DSM and the LA. She's old enough to be my mother so I really don't want to tell her she's not applying her borders correctly but i have a lot of trouble with the borders on her larger quilts rippling. My own quilts don't do that.
    I have just loaded one of her quilts, a beautiful, perfectly pieced King size, on the frame and already I can tell that the top border is wavy just trying to baste along the top edge. She obviously spent a lot of time on this quilt, it's huge, all her points are perfect and I don't want it to look bad. Is it better to quilt those borders heavily to draw up some of the excess or quilt it lightly and just try to ease the waviness in? She always tells me to do whatever I want but doesn't usually like heavy quilting. What would you do?

  2. #2
    Super Member sak658's Avatar
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    We get in a lot of tops with the same problem...working on one today..has so much rippling on the border till there is no way to work it out...We try to explain the problem to them...but they just don't seem to understand...they think we can do miracles...but a rippling border is not good...What do you tell them to do for this not to happen...any advice would be so helpful...

  3. #3
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    I would call her and tell her the problem. Offer her options: a) you to remove the borders and correct the problem at $x per hour. b) she can take the quilt home and correct the problem and bring it back. c). Alert her to the problem and let her know some pleats or tucks may need to be made as you quilt. This way the choice is hers and the result won't be a "surprise" that reflects badly on you. It's never too late for us "old girls" to learn a few new tricks. Just be polite and have a friendly tone.
    Cheryl Robinson
    http://www.silverneedlestitching.com
    APQS Millenium Longarm with Intelliquilter

  4. #4
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    In the long arm circle, we call those happy quilts, all the borders waving at each other. Since her piecing is so excellent, I would ask her to remove the borders. Show her, or give her a picture handout, of how to measure through the center of the quilt and make the border fit the quilt. Always sew the borders on with the quilt on the machine bed so the feed dogs can help feed any quilt fullness into the seam.

    You can sometimes steam out some of the fullness, but if it is as bad as you say, they need to be removed and cut to fit and reapplied.

    Lu in TN

  5. #5
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    I have seen some fullness fixed by doing bead board design in the borders. Can you do the bead board and if there is enough fullness, can you run a line of stitching to disguise a dart? The other option is to call her and ask how she would like to proceed.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Pollytink's Avatar
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    I don't have a LA but just did a baby quilt on my DSM and was worried I was going to end up with wavy borders. It turned out ok but what DO you do to avoid this happening? TIA!

  7. #7
    Super Member DOTTYMO's Avatar
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    As quiltinglubas2cn said. Measure across and down the centre of the quilt. Then place onto the quilt by diving border and quilt into sections half quarter etc depending on the length of quilt.
    Remember to measure one way after border on 2 sides done. Ps if you forget put a square in the corner then it is part of your design.
    This way lets you spread out waves.
    Finished is better than a UFO

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pollytink View Post
    I don't have a LA but just did a baby quilt on my DSM and was worried I was going to end up with wavy borders. It turned out ok but what DO you do to avoid this happening? TIA!
    You have to measure the quilt through the centre both ways - length and width, cut your borders to that measurement, mark the quilt and the border in quarters and match these points and pin then either ease in the fullness of the quilt (if it is longer than the border) or ease in the border (if it is longer than the quilt) and pin, pin, pin and sew. Hope this makes sense.

  9. #9
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    this is probably the best option, telling her that you don't want to ruin all her beautiful work.
    I have chosen to be happy because it is good for my health - Voltaire

  10. #10
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    Tell her all the ways (suggested above) to fix the problem and ask her which one she wants. If she is not aware of the problem, she will keep making the same mistake time after time.

    Let her know that machine quilting on a frame is different from hand quilting or tying a quilt and a lot less forgiving.

    Also, if she redoes the borders, she needs to put the longer (border or pieced top) on the bottom so the feed dogs will help.

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