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Thread: Heavy Quilt

  1. #1
    Super Member Normabeth's Avatar
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    Heavy Quilt

    Hi, While I am not trying to be a wuss, I finally finished my nephews All American quilt. Last night I started to put the binding on, the weight of this quilt just knocked me for a loop. The weight wasn't to bad making the quilt top, but once the batting and backing came together, it's heavy! The quilt is almost a double size and trying to sew the binding on, it just gave me great pains in my neck. Any suggestions on how to finish this large quilt without further neck pain? I use one of those cabinets that the leaf extends once you open the cabinet door, I tried putting all the quilt weight on this extension, but it is still so heavy. I dread finishing off my niece's quilt, it's at the long arm quilters now and it's a king size, when she got a new bed last December, I told her I would make a quilt for the new bed, boy am I in trouble.
    Be kinder than is necessary because everyone you meet is
    fighting some kind of battle

  2. #2
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Does it open behind or next to the sewing machine? I have my sewing desk so that it backs up to another craft desk and keep a storage unit to the side (next to both me AND the machine) so that the weight is supported all around the machine. You might need to add a table next to you or the machine or behind the machine. Even if the height is not exactly the same, it will be very helpful.

  3. #3
    Super Member Normabeth's Avatar
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    Thanks, I will add another table tonight and to the left of me to hold some of the weight - it should like something like this
    Extension Sewing cabinet
    Chair
    Table
    Be kinder than is necessary because everyone you meet is
    fighting some kind of battle

  4. #4
    Senior Member gingerd's Avatar
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    When I'm binding a quilt I put it on a table and I sit next to the table. I don't have any of it on my lap. I use a banquet table that we have. It helps a lot as now it has gotten warm here.
    **************
    Ginger
    ~stitching one thread at a time~

  5. #5
    Power Poster joyce888's Avatar
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    I lowerd my ironing board (which has a 24x60 top) even with my sewing cabinet and put it on the left side to carry the weight of the quilt while adding the binding, also making sure the quilt did not hang off the ironing board.
    Joyce

    Four things you can't recover: The stone.....after the throw. The word......after its said. The occasion.....after its missed. The time......after its gone

  6. #6
    Super Member SouthPStitches's Avatar
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    Do you have a friend or significant other that can sit to the right and behind you a bit to help support the weight some while you bind? Shouldn't take more than an hour or more tops. I too have used a lowered ironing board with decent results as joyce888 suggested above.

  7. #7
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    I put a table butting up against the extension on my machine and to the left of me, and then I also have a table very close behind me that can also take the weight of the quilt. I think the cotton batting makes the quilt heavier, and thats why I have switched to the wool batting which I really love. However, when you have a large quilt to do, you certainly have your work cut out for you. Try to plan to have tables or ironing boards to carry the weight. You will really see the difference and your poor body will s..i..n..g :-) Have fun!
    Last edited by majormom; 06-12-2012 at 06:34 AM. Reason: why don't I proof read!?

  8. #8
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    My LAQ will machine sew the binding on so all I have to do is hand sew it down (she will also do the hand work, but I don't mind doing that part). It helps a lot that I don't have to maneuver a large quilt to sew on the binding.

  9. #9
    Super Member KathyKat's Avatar
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    I sit in a recliner with the footrest up. Then I have the quilt covering my legs and lap while I bind by hand. During hot weather I sit on the couch with a footstool for my feet and rest most of the quilt on the couch next to me.
    Kathleen, a lass with a bit of the Irish in her blood and a whole lot of Irish in her heart

  10. #10
    Super Member 117becca's Avatar
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    What kind of batting did you use? While, yes, larger quilts are heavy just because they have all that mass, I'm amazed at how much heavier a quilt using warm & natural for the batting when compared to the Dream Cotton Select batting (a lightweight batting)
    my name is becca and i'm a quilt-a-holic :-)

  11. #11
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Normabeth View Post
    Thanks, I will add another table tonight and to the left of me to hold some of the weight - it should like something like this
    Extension Sewing cabinet
    Chair
    Table
    Don't forget to have a table to your immediate left. Enter your sewing space from behind or to the right.

  12. #12
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    I am fortunate to have a 90" dinning table and an 8 foot banquet table AND a room large enough for both. I can put the tables end to end and then if the quilt is really large there is room for another banquet table behind so the quilt is supported in all directons. Oh, yes, I also have a long arm in the same room. I still live alone and am house sitting until future hubby and I can get all our stuff done in order to marry.
    http://www.oregonquilting.net
    I choose to give my life away for things that last forever

  13. #13
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 117becca View Post
    What kind of batting did you use? While, yes, larger quilts are heavy just because they have all that mass, I'm amazed at how much heavier a quilt using warm & natural for the batting when compared to the Dream Cotton Select batting (a lightweight batting)
    Exactly my thought!! I nearly had a heart attack in 2007 when my queen-sized Cottage Garden quilt came back from the LAQ here in Virginia and found she'd used W and N cotton batting, which I found to be the heaviest quilt I'd ever owned. I was aware of WN, but had never used it because, until then, my batting experiences were in Texas where most of us used Hobbs cotton batting made in Waco TX. Now I use Quilters Dream cotton or wool and my shoulders don't complain every time I have to fold the quilts.

    Jan in VA
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  14. #14
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    Also try Quilter's Dream DREAM ORIENT. It's my personal favorite. Soft, cuddly and very drapable.
    Cheryl Robinson
    http://www.silverneedlestitching.com
    APQS Millenium Longarm with Intelliquilter

  15. #15
    Super Member Daylesewblessed's Avatar
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    Last summer when my then 86 year old mother was doing the machine sewing part of the binding for a large charity quilt, her friend and I helped with it while she sewed. It did take awhile with one stop for a cookie break, but it certainly did help her to have the extra hands. She has a large table in the sewing room, and we arranged everything to suit her.

    Dayle

  16. #16
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Just a comment about batting weight; I made a flannel quilt for my nephew. It's either a queen or double, depending on your definition, and is 3 layers of flannel - top, backing, and I also used flannel for batting. That sucker is HEAVY! I was surprised to see that he uses a sheet and that quilt and that's all - until I slept under it while visiting. Holy cow.

  17. #17
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    I use two plastic storage bins in my sewing room for storage. I pull these over and use them as table extenders. You are right...quits can be quite heavy. Which is why our formothers pieced in the summer and quilted in the winter.

  18. #18
    Moderator kathy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SouthPStitches View Post
    Do you have a friend or significant other that can sit to the right and behind you a bit to help support the weight some while you bind? Shouldn't take more than an hour or more tops. I too have used a lowered ironing board with decent results as joyce888 suggested above.
    if you mean "right" rather than left, I'm confused (and that's easily done!)

  19. #19
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I make double to queen and sometimes larger quilts. I put them on my glass topped dining table and sew the binding on like that. Yes, quilts can get heavy, I notice that several times through the quilting process.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  20. #20
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    Oh yes these quilts do get heavy dont they! Try folding the quilit into quarters and then work your way around it. The quilt will eventuall unfold but seems to be a little more managable. Sometimes when I do my binding I dump the quilt to the left of my machine. Find the edge, and just sew about 12 inches at a time, and then reshift the quilt. It is a job tho. When I do the hand sewing, I clear of my table and put the quit there. No HEAT or weight doing this last sewing step. And remember...when you are doing the binding...that sucker is almost DONE!!!
    If you don't work on it you'll never finish it.

  21. #21
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    I have learned that fan folding the quilt so the entire weight is close to the needle is very helpful. Once I have all the weight within about 16 inches to the left of the machine, I then fanfold the other direction and put it on a small table that fits under my left elbow.. I make sure the area behind the machine is clean and smooth. The quilt then has nothing to drag or catch on, and I can smoothly feed the quilt into the machine. I hope this makes sense. It's what works for me, and I'm able to do king size quilts without any pain.
    Shirley in Arizona

  22. #22
    Senior Member VickyS's Avatar
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    Are you machine stitching the binding down?

    It may be easier for you to use something like "Steam a Seam 2" to hold the binding in place while you work with the quilt to manipulate it around your machine. I've found I get stuck a lot using pins, and clips have a tendency to maneuver themselves loose when working on a large quilt.

    Yes those quilts are heavy, especially if using an old blanket as the lining. I sew all my quilts on my little Singer Featherweight and without that support to the left of the machine (both in front and behind the machine) I can not get enough of the quilt in front of and behind the needle to get the binding on straight.

    These ideas work with some degree of practice. I do a number of charity quilts in larger sizes in order to get my skill level up (and keep it up) while working with larger materials in my small machine.

    Good luck! We look forward to hearing how it goes.

  23. #23
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    You've received very good advise on ways to lighten your load. I put 2 large door stops (from Dollar Tree) under the back part of my machine to tilt it forward so I can see better. It lessens my neck pain. Also, I sometimes will throw some of the quilt over my left shoulder (instead of in my lap) in addition to having support set up next to my left side.

  24. #24
    Junior Member shelrox's Avatar
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    I made my Dh a crazy quilt larger then a king size and what I did was put the ironing board next to my cabinet and then also a small table in front of my cabinet and it helped to take the load off. It amazes me how a topper that was manageable suddenly becomes a lead weight

  25. #25
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
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    I sew my binding on entirely with the sewing machine. I sew it to the back first and then turn it over to the front and stitch it down with either a straight stitch or a decorative stitch. I have repetitive motion injuries to my right wrist and elbow, so lots of hand sewing isn't possible any more.

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