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Thread: A newbie needs quilting advice...

  1. #1
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    A newbie needs quilting advice...

    I'm a novice quilter, and I have some questions about when it is, or isn't, necessary to quilt smallish blankets. I mostly make baby blankets and lap quilts, up to 40" x 60" or so, and I don't usually use patterns or other instructions.

    If I'm making a blanket with cotton on the top and bottom and batting in between, it's obvious that it needs to be quilted.

    What about a blanket with a cotton or flannel top and a plush backing fabric? Is it okay to use no batting and not quilt it? Should it be quilted anyway once it reaches a certain larger size?

    Is it ever advisable to use Minky as a backing fabric with no batting or quilting?

    Two plush fabrics, back to back, no batting: does it ever need to be quilted?

    Any other advice or general principles you could give me along these lines would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Super Member hopetoquilt's Avatar
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    Minky can be quilted. My boys have blankets that are flannel that are just tied at the edges. Hope that helps.

  3. #3
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    I've used minky as backing with no batting in between, but I still quilted it. Well, actually I used embroidery designs to quilt it, but it's the same concept. I was told not to SID with minky if possible. Apparently straight lines don't look as nice on the minky. I guess mistakes are more obvious?

  4. #4
    Super Member HillCountryGal's Avatar
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    Guess my answer to all your questions would be.. think of how all this will behave once it's washed. If it won't lay right, then I'd at least tie them if you don't want to quilt.

    A few years back I made smaller denim quilts. Rather than quilt or tie them, I just bar-tacked throughout the quilt to secure everything.

  5. #5
    Senior Member jeank's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=HillCountryGal;5695055]Guess my answer to all your questions would be.. think of how all this will behave once it's washed. If it won't lay right, then I'd at least tie them if you don't want to quilt.
    QUOTE]

    One time I made placemats. Since they were so small, I didn't quilt them. That was a mistake. After they were washed, they were a mess. So I ironed them good and quilted them. Afterthat, they washed up just fine.

    I don't quilt a lot on wall hangings, but those are not to be washed.
    Jean in MI

  6. #6
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I would for sure either quilt or tie. I would be afraid they would eventually get all bunched up. Every 3-4" is as big as I would go, no matter what the batting Manufacturer says.
    Welcome to this board from Missouri. Lots of knowledgeable people here.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  7. #7
    Super Member PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    If batting is used in any of your projects, that will determine the quilting spacing. The batting package will tell you the maximum quilting distance. Other than that I agree with all the other posters. I would recommend quilting or tying for anything with more than 1 layer. Don't know what kind of sewing machine you have, but look in the manual and see if there is either a bar tack or 'sewing on a button' stitch. You can use this instead of hand tying. Welcome to the board!
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  8. #8
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    batting or not---if it's going to be laundered- you would probably want to do some quilting on it---otherwise when it is washed & dried it will (puff) in some spots. twist...not lay flat--some at least a minimum amount- like an X across it will keep it (together) when it is laundered-
    even a 12" square cotton top, fleece back- will come out wonky if it has no quilting keeping the layers together.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  9. #9
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    I agree with the others quilting or tied. Why not start out with just straight stitching around the blocks the width of your presser foot away from the edge. Or if you are doing strips try some of your decorative stitches down the center of the strip.
    Cheryl Robinson
    http://www.silverneedlestitching.com
    APQS Millenium Longarm with Intelliquilter

  10. #10
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    I am new to the board too, however I have done extensive work with fleece and embroidery. I am making a flannel quilt with a fleece backing this year though. Couple key points: Quilting on top is to stabilize the pieces so that washing/use do not cause it to bunch. Minky and Fleece are very stretchy, so large areas may stretch out of shape if not quilted. I did a flannel 6in squares on point and plan to quilt in a straight grid pattern. Another note, if you are doing any type of decorative stitches on a heavy pile fabric (fleece, minky, etc) even if it is the bobbin work, I would recommend using some wash away stabilizer like they use in embroidery machines. This is designed to keep the stitches above the pile, otherwise your pretty stitches will fall into the fabric and you wont be able to see them.

    Just my 2 cents Hope it helps

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