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Thread: Ready to quilt (first time)...need advice

  1. #1
    Senior Member JenelTX's Avatar
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    Wow, I finished this quilt top, my first, about five weeks ago or more, but life got in the way. I finally have a little breathing room today, and I'm ready to start quilting. I'd love to have a little advice from more experienced quilters. Here are a few questions I have:

    1. How far past the quilt top should the batting extend? I bought a queen-sized batting, but it's a lap size quilt. I want to cut off the extra to decrease the bulk and make this easier to work with, but I don't want to cut off too much.

    2. Do I need to mark the fabric if I'm going to follow the lines of the pattern? I also want to do a heart in each white pinwheel triangle, but I thought I could go back and do those after doing all the other quilting. Is there a reason I shouldn't?

    By the way, this pattern is available for free on the Fun Stuff page at FoolsGoldCA.com.

    Land of Happy Endings Quilt
    Name:  Attachment-234099.jpe
Views: 189
Size:  67.1 KB

  2. #2
    saf
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    Super Member saf's Avatar
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    what a pretty quilt. Love the colours. A newbie here myself so any advice I give would be suspect but I'm sure one of the more experienced quilters will be along shortly.

  3. #3
    Super Member Dina's Avatar
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    Beautiful quilt! I am probably not the best at answering your questions, but I will give it a shot. I cut my batting about six inches bigger than my quilt...3 inches per side. I make the back of my quilt that size also. It is probably a bit bigger than I need to cut it, but it works for me.

    If you are going to follow the pattern, stitch in the ditch, you won't need to mark your pattern.

    Oh, I just looked at the picture again. You already have it pinned. Good for you.

    One thing I learned the hard way is that q quilt can get a bit heavy while quilting, and gravity wants to pull it away from the sewing machine. I now place my ironing board perpendicular to the sewing machine and let it hold up part of the weight of the quilt.

    It looks like you are 'good to go." I find the machine quilting very satisfying. I hope you do too. (I have been quilting 2 years....sort of a confident beginner...)

  4. #4
    Super Member chairjogger's Avatar
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    fun quilt top!!

  5. #5
    Super Member chairjogger's Avatar
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    worst thing I ever ( !) did to a quilt top was not have enough back material.. don't scrimp or ever think ( perfect fit).. always leave enough for what it takes and more !

    Good luck.. really enjoy your top you have ! Plus.. think of the batting.. cotton dense or polyester fibers.. all up to the pile you want afterwards. more pile between stitches iwth polyester fibers.. cotton dense for needle on machine.. easier to manouver..

    Ell

    things I have learned along the 30 year path.

  6. #6
    Super Member Dina's Avatar
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    Are you going to hand quilt? I never thought about that, but I know nothing about that.

  7. #7
    Senior Member shnnn's Avatar
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    Are you hand or machine quilting?
    yep on the few inches for batting and backing, I dont measure mine just put it all together then cut off the extra a couple inches around. Mark as much as you need to. I don't think going back to do the hearts later would be a big no-no, but if you are going to hoop each section it might be quicker/easier to do them while your already there instead of going back and re-hooping.. just my thoughts...
    Most important, relax and enjoy

  8. #8
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    I'm new so I have limited advice. I like to use spray adhesive like 505 or June Tailor for all layers; I think though if I ever did a large one I'd also do pins to make sure it held. That leads me to the other thing; you'll notice as you go you are going to have to stop all the time to remove your pins as you go; try pinning inside of the blocks so you don't have to remove to many pins; it'll go faster and less frustrating to constantly stop to remove pin. For your first quilt you did a great job; no one could tell you are a newbie by this one.

  9. #9
    Senior Member JenelTX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dina
    One thing I learned the hard way is that q quilt can get a bit heavy while quilting, and gravity wants to pull it away from the sewing machine. I now place my ironing board perpendicular to the sewing machine and let it hold up part of the weight of the quilt.
    I had been planning to hand quilt, but mostly because I didn't think machine quilting would be an option. I have a very basic sewing machine, and I thought it would be too small for me to fit the quilt in to get all of the pieces.

    Oh, one other question I forgot to ask - Should I start quilting in the center of the quilt, or the edges, or doesn't it matter?

  10. #10
    Senior Member JenelTX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by romanojg
    For your first quilt you did a great job; no one could tell you are a newbie by this one.
    Thank you! That means a lot. When I look at it, I see all the corners that don't match up. LOL But I keep reminding myself it's my first quilt, and I will get better with time. I already know what quilt I want to make next, but I won't allow myself to start a new one until I finish this one completely. Otherwise, I'll end up with a hundred unfinished projects as the next new idea lures me away.

    Thank you, too, for your advice re: pins. That makes a lot of sense.

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