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Thread: Need help on squaring up tops

  1. #1
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    I'm having trouble squaring up my quilts before I attach the first border. Any suggestions please.

  2. #2
    Super Member sewwhat85's Avatar
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    i dont think i square up before borders are you supposed to opps

  3. #3
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    I square up my blocks, then my rows, and then the top again before adding borders, after each border and then the whole top.
    Hopefully doing this as I go, only a little bit needs to be shaved off here and there, rather than a 1/4" or more here and there.

    Shaving off a bit as you go, you can usually avoid having to trim off your points or other design elements when you need to cut off even 1/8" :wink: OR you can unsew and adjust seams as you find inconsistancies :D

    A 12" square up ruler laid on the corners, then line up another ruler or two or three across the top.
    Nice straight yard sticks are helpful too. The metal Tsquares you can get at a hardware store are also a good tool to use.

    You can also lay your quilt out on the floor tape or pin it down. Tape or pin a string onto the carpet/flooring on either side of the top. Use the string as a straight edge guide, and slide your rotary mat underneath the quilt and trim as needed. :D:D:D

  4. #4
    Cyn
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    Quote Originally Posted by amma
    I square up my blocks, then my rows, and then the top again before adding borders, after each border and then the whole top.
    Hopefully doing this as I go, only a little bit needs to be shaved off here and there, rather than a 1/4" or more here and there.

    A 12" square up ruler laid on the corners, then line up another ruler or two or three across the top.
    Nice straight yard sticks are helpful too. The metal Tsquares you can get at a hardware store are also a good tool to use.

    You can also lay your quilt out on the floor tape or pin it down. Tape or pin a string onto the carpet/flooring on either side of the top. Use the string as a straight edge guide, and slide your rotary mat underneath the quilt and trim as needed.
    That string idea is a nifty one!

  5. #5
    Super Member suezquilts's Avatar
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    When applying your borders be sure to follow these steps:

    ■measure the width in three areas, average the width (41″, 40″, 42″=41″ for each border)
    ■cut two pieces at 41″
    ■pin and carefully sew, press
    ■next measure the length, following the same instructions above
    This will ensure a square quilt. After the borders are applied and pressed, take these measurements and add 8″ to the width and 8″ to the length for your backing size. So a 70″ X 70″ quilt will need at least a 78″ X 78″ backing. The reason for this is I pin the quilt backing to leaders adding the batting and next the quilt top. Remove any selvages from your backing.

    This is what I suggest to my customers... Take the time to do this and you will be a happy camper.

  6. #6
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    Help, I am not good with a measuring tape, a ruler over 12 inches or math. Also, I don't always understand formulas the first go round and this is one of those times. I need to know if the quilted top in the example is being measured in 3 places from side to side and averaged out to the 41 inches? Next am I putting a 41 inch border on both sides of the quilted top? Then I repeat this process and measure the quilted top in 3 places from the top to the bottom and average that out to determine the size of that border Does the quiler cut this down to a smaller size or do I end up with a really big quilt? I am sorry I just don't understand and would appreciate help.

  7. #7
    Super Member lindyline's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BETTY62
    Help, I am not good with a measuring tape, a ruler over 12 inches or math. Also, I don't always understand formulas the first go round and this is one of those times. I need to know if the quilted top in the example is being measured in 3 places from side to side and averaged out to the 41 inches? Next am I putting a 41 inch border on both sides of the quilted top? Then I repeat this process and measure the quilted top in 3 places from the top to the bottom and average that out to determine the size of that border Does the quiler cut this down to a smaller size or do I end up with a really big quilt? I am sorry I just don't understand and would appreciate help.
    What you're being told to do, is to measure your quilt at the top, middle and bottom, take all these measurements, add them together and then divide them by three, to get the average measurement for the sides of the quilt. Then after carefully pinning and sewing and pressing, you would do the same for the top and bottom borders, that is measure left side top to bottom, middle top to bottom, then right side top to bottom. Again, add these 3 measurements, then divide this answer by 3 to get the average measurement, which is what you would use. If you need further clariication, pm me. :thumbup:

  8. #8
    Senior Member Tcharlie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lindyline
    Quote Originally Posted by BETTY62
    Help, I am not good with a measuring tape, a ruler over 12 inches or math. Also, I don't always understand formulas the first go round and this is one of those times. I need to know if the quilted top in the example is being measured in 3 places from side to side and averaged out to the 41 inches? Next am I putting a 41 inch border on both sides of the quilted top? Then I repeat this process and measure the quilted top in 3 places from the top to the bottom and average that out to determine the size of that border Does the quiler cut this down to a smaller size or do I end up with a really big quilt? I am sorry I just don't understand and would appreciate help.
    What you're being told to do, is to measure your quilt at the top, middle and bottom, take all these measurements, add them together and then divide them by three, to get the average measurement for the sides of the quilt. Then after carefully pinning and sewing and pressing, you would do the same for the top and bottom borders, that is measure left side top to bottom, middle top to bottom, then right side top to bottom. Again, add these 3 measurements, then divide this answer by 3 to get the average measurement, which is what you would use. If you need further clariication, pm me. :thumbup:
    Here's a picture of what they are saying:

    Measuring a three points
    Name:  Attachment-69904.jpe
Views: 115
Size:  15.6 KB

  9. #9
    Super Member PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I also square the blocks. I make all my blocks, then measure them and find the smallest one. If the smallest one is really really smaller than the rest, like 1/4", I discard it (or them) and make replacements. Then I square all the blocks up to the the same size. If I do this, then usually the quilt stays pretty square. I just measure the quilt across the middle to get the border measurements. I try and keep my quilting of even desity thru the whole quilt. That's one of the reasons why you get a quilt out of square after quilting. If one area is quilted more heavily then this area will shrink more than the rest, pulling it out of square.

  10. #10
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    One thing missing on the measuring/dividing to get average length piece. When you measure, cut and pin -- be sure to pin the middle of the border first, then the two ends, then ease the rest in to get it to fit. Don't just start sewing at one end or you might be short.

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