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Thread: Help !! What am I doing wrong

  1. #1
    Member cdobbert40's Avatar
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    I have made 5 toppers and have started quilting 2. The first one I put aside and and am just about done with the 2nd. I laid down the backing made sure it was pressed and wrinkle free, put the batting on top, smoothed that all out making sure the backing stayed smooth and did not pucker anywhere, put the top on smoothed that out, pin based it with pins approx every two inches, starting from the center and working out to the ends, quilting the same way from the center and out, but as I quilt, the backing did not stay smooth and now I have BIG puckers. I have ripped out the quilting in the that area and will redo it but don't want to rip out a second time.

    I don't have a camera to take a picture and show, but the quilt has 12 large 8X8 blocks which I machine quilted first and now I am working on the first outside border which is 4" wide, this is where the trouble is. I am doing a top stitch on a diagnal working from the inside out, so it's like all the material went to one side and at the last three diagnals there is to much material. If I can borrow my sister in laws camera I will post pictures to better explain.

    Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    Did you tape or pin the backing down? It will move even if you hand smoothed it out. It must be taped or pinned. Ask me how I know!! I did this to a queen size when I first started quilting.

  3. #3
    Member cdobbert40's Avatar
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    Nope, I sure didn't. I am assuming that by taping the backing down you stretch the fabric a little?

  4. #4
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdobbert40
    Nope, I sure didn't. I am assuming that by taping the backing down you stretch the fabric a little?
    It actually doesn't stretch it but it will keep it taunt. Believe me you will notice a big difference when you do tape or pin. Check out Sharon Schambers web site she has a tute on this.

  5. #5
    Super Member SuziC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by featherweight
    Quote Originally Posted by cdobbert40
    Nope, I sure didn't. I am assuming that by taping the backing down you stretch the fabric a little?
    It actually doesn't stretch it but it will keep it taunt. Believe me you will notice a big difference when you do tape or pin. Check out Sharon Schambers web site she has a tute on this.
    I agree...good advice

  6. #6
    Member cdobbert40's Avatar
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    Thank you so much. Let the taping begin. Well on number 3 anyway. I think this one will end up "as is" once completed and I shall name it learning curve.

  7. #7
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdobbert40
    Thank you so much. Let the taping begin. Well on number 3 anyway. I think this one will end up "as is" once completed and I shall name it learning curve.
    Hey, I learn something everyday from this awesome board...What did I do before Quilting Board? I don't even remember how I got redirected here but whatever it was I am so thankful!!!

  8. #8
    RST
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    Senior Member RST's Avatar
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    Are you using a walking foot? Free motion quilting?

    To me, this sounds more like a problem that is happening at the machine than something you are doing in the basting stage -- though I do agree that tape helps when basting.

    A little trick that can help when you have persistant puckering is to machine baste the quilt in a grid with water soluable thread. This keeps all the layers together and smooth while you go in and sew your more interesting quilting design, but will wash out easily.

    RST

  9. #9
    Member cdobbert40's Avatar
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    With a walking foot

  10. #10
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    You said you quilted the blocks first. This could be where your problem started.
    Did you start in the center of the quilt, and SID outwards to all of the sides first? Stitching out a "grid work" first, helps to stabilize the whole quilt sandwich. Then go back and stitch inside of the individual blocks. :D:D:D

  11. #11
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Taping the backing is so important. Basting spray instead of pins helped me a lot too. Less shifting.

  12. #12
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    If you heavily starch your backing fabric before layering, that will stabilize the backing for both pinning and quilting. It eliminates a lot of puckering problems.

  13. #13
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I was taught to baste an X through the quilt, then a - from side to side and top to bottom. Smooth the space between the basting and if any fabric pools up at the basting stitches the back is not taunt enough. The back needs to be pretty darn taunt.

  14. #14
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    i had this problem and i was using the walking foot that came with my machine. i changed to a regular foot and it is alot better.

  15. #15
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I pin my quilts with large safety pins. I have a glass topped dining table and I use squeeze type wood clamps and smooth out the back, clamp using at least 8 clamps, smooth out batting, clamp with same clamps, smooth out top and clamp, same 8 clamps, repeat until all is pinned about 3-4" all over. I pin all around the edge of the last border real close and don't remove these pins until I'm ready to trim it. I almost always do a large stipple, meander or whatever, going through the center top to bottom, then go across the center, side to side, then quilt all one quarter, then just repeat until the center is quilted, then quilt the borders, removing a few pins at a time. This method works great for me.

  16. #16
    Super Member trisha's Avatar
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    Wow!!! I have made over 60 quilts and never even heard of taping the backing down until today. Never had a problem with it moving around. But love all of these little tidbits, because you never know when you will need them!!

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