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Thread: king top - cut batting in thirds for FMQ - easiest way to add batting back in

  1. #1
    Senior Member DawnFurlong's Avatar
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    king top - cut batting in thirds for FMQ - easiest way to add batting back in

    Okay, so I decided that for my almost king size top (110 x 110) - I was going to cut the batting into thirds since I am FMQ on my domestic sewing machine. I have never attempted to quilt one this large and was worried about being able to manage the bulk.

    I have the middle third quilted. I used my Singer 15-91 to FMQ (love that machine!!!). While it was nice having less bulk, it was NOT nice adding back the batting to the sides. I had a heck of a time getting everything to lie flat, smoothed out. I did try to leave 6 inches un-quilted on the edges. On a few small sections, I got closer to the edge than 6 inches. I used the heat-bond tape to attached the batting together (cut it in a large s wavy line). Only have one side of the batting reattached, that is all my patience would allow last night. I am worried that I am going to have problems with batting puckering on the back of my quilt as I FMQ.

    I have never had problems with puckering on my backing. And, I have already decided I would rather learn to manage the bulk of the quilt that mess with cutting the batting in thirds again. I think my 15-91 turned out to feel much roomier than the size would dictate. As I spent a couple of frustrating hours trying to get just one side of the batting situated right (am using 505 adhesive for spray basting) - am thinking there has to be an easier way to reattach the batting on the remaining side when the time comes.

    Any tips to help this along? I found that my batting did not lie smoothly against the wavy lines I had cut (I made sure to mark the top right and left side of my top and batting so I knew which side went where). Correction - it did match for about half of the length. I had to do some trimming on the other half to help it fit along the cut. I am absolutely dreading having to add back in that last third of batting.

  2. #2
    Senior Member AnitaSt's Avatar
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    I think it just takes patience and care to get the batting back together smoothly. I am in the process of putting together an almost-queen size Log Cabin that I quilted in 7 different sections. I did not want to wrangle the entire top even if the batting was divided, so I broke the top into those 7 sections and quilted each one, leaving the last round of logs unquilted. I'm using the same method you are (the fusible tape) to join the batting except that I have two layers of batting (what was I thinking?) and pinned the top rather than using the spray basting. I have a little bit of rippling but the final quilting should take care of that.

    I struggled to get the first two sections together but the next two went together MUCH easier. So maybe your second joining will go easier for you too. Perhaps the length of the join is the issue...seems that a longer length would be harder to manage.

    Hang in there!

    AnitaSt

  3. #3
    Senior Member DawnFurlong's Avatar
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    Hmmm - you might be right AnitaSt - that the length of the join probably isn't helping matters. Also, I am wishing I had done a straight cut. I did wavy as that was what I saw recommended (and it made sense - the reason why - having to do with the integrity of the quilt). But as I was putting it back together, I was wishing it was a straight seam.

    Well, first things first - and that is I am going to FMQ the one side that I already have put back together. By then I should be rejuvenated enough to tackle putting the last side back together.

    I think I will do a couple of things differently for the second side. I am pondering starching the back before I add the batting. Then I will tape the backing to the floor (don't know why I didn't do that for the first side - might have solved some of my problem). And cross my fingers that it will go better the second time around.

  4. #4
    Super Member JUNEC's Avatar
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    Could you post a picture so the people that have no imagination (yes I am talking about me) can see what you are trying to do.
    Good luck

  5. #5
    Super Member EasyPeezy's Avatar
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    Maybe you could try to whip stitch the batting together?
    Do you have a big table? You could use bulldog clips to hold the layers together.
    Start where it's already quilted then move in opposite directions. North-South,
    East-West, etc. Do one layer at a time and move one/two clips at a time to get
    all three layers together. Keep everything taught but not over-stretched.
    Hope this makes sense.

  6. #6
    Senior Member DawnFurlong's Avatar
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    JuneC - below are a couple of pictures to show what I have done. The first picture I have the backing pulled back so you can see where the batting ends. I think part of my problem was I cut an extreme wavy line. Don't know why I was so extreme. The second picture is of the back side of the quilt - opposite side - where I've added the batting back in. Many wrinkles - which I try to keep smoothing out. I just have this sinking feeling I will have all kinds of problems with this once I start FMQ. I have decided I will do a very small amount at a time and then check - so if I have to rip anything out, it will be in small areas.

    EasyPeezy - trying to picture (I am very visual) - what are bulldog clips? I agree though - I think the key will be to work on very small sections at a time - checking A LOT and continuously smoothing.

    Name:  without batting.jpg
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    Name:  batting added back in.jpg
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Size:  466.4 KB

  7. #7
    Super Member franc36's Avatar
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    I recently quilted a 120 x 122 inch quilt on my old Bernina. I know everyone says to cut waves; but I cut straight. I used the heat bond tape, as you did. I used lots of pins and checked that the backing was smooth before I started. I added the batting on the side as I was ready to quilt it. In other words, after I had quilted one side, I then added the batting to the other side. This worked well for me. I will probably do this again on the queen size quilt I am making.

  8. #8
    Super Member EasyPeezy's Avatar
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    This is what I call bulldog clips. You probably can find them at any office supply store.
    Name:  Bulldog_clips.jpg
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  9. #9
    Senior Member DawnFurlong's Avatar
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    Thanks EasyPeezy - I see now.

    I think if I had cut the batting straight, it wouldn't be a problem. Live and learn. Definitely going to quilt the one side, then I'll add the batting back to the second side.

    I'll have to post how it comes out. Going to go work a little bit on it now.

  10. #10
    Senior Member GemState's Avatar
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    I have done this several times and cut the batting in a wavy line, but just enough wave to be able to fit it together easily. I had no problem laying it out on a large table, using strips of fusible interfacing to put it together, then spraying to get it all together ready to FMQ. I think cutting not so 'curvy' would help.

  11. #11
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    Perhaps before you cut the wave you could put 'registration marks' along the wave so you would know where to meet the wave edges when you rejoin the wave.

    ali
    Have fun quilting! If it isn't fun, you will miss a lot.
    ali

  12. #12
    Super Member hperttula123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AliKat View Post
    Perhaps before you cut the wave you could put 'registration marks' along the wave so you would know where to meet the wave edges when you rejoin the wave.

    ali
    That was going to be what I would suggest. I bet cutting a straight line would be easier too. Sorry your having issues with it. I wouldn't know what else to suggest.
    enjoy your life...it's the only one you have!!!
    Heather

  13. #13
    Senior Member DawnFurlong's Avatar
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    I had read about putting the registration marks along the edges of the wave - but it didn't seem necessary since I marked the top and bottom - and it seemed obvious what should meet where with the curved edge. I could tell where it should go - but it was like it was stretched out somewhat. So the batting met up nicely for about halfway down the length - and then it didn't. At least that was my thinking at the time.

    I did start quilting on the one side where I added the batting back in. I am happy to say that it went better than I expected. I went slowly and smoothed, smoothed, smoothed. I am still working from the center out.

    I think that if I ever decide to try this again, I would either cut the batting straight or do a very gentle wave. I would also make sure I stopped quilting uniformly in a line a good 6 to 8 inches away from the edge of the batting (kind of got lost as I was quilting the center and was turning the quilt around - so where I stopped relative to the edge of the batting was not uniform. That combined with the extreme wave I cut is probably the biggest part of my problem).

    Also, I will tape the backing down before I add the batting back to the sides. Not sure why I didn't do that for the first side. I did when I originally laid the whole batting out (before I cut it into thirds). That alone should help the process of smoothing the batting down, and easing in any stretch or discrepancies to the fit.

    And I'll add this all to my mental notebook of things I learned not to do when quilting!!!
    Last edited by DawnFurlong; 02-14-2012 at 11:44 AM.

  14. #14
    Senior Member DawnFurlong's Avatar
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    Okay, so thought I would post an update as to how this is going.

    Adding the batting back to the other side was not near as bad. For starters, I taped the backing down. I didn't do that for the first side because I was only dealing with a small portion of the quilt - and I have done similar size layers without taping the batting down and it has worked. But then again, I normally start with the batting laid out, smooth the top over it, then peel back the top to spray the batting for basting. Slightly different procedure. And I am usually on the carpet, which helps hold things. Different on a wooden floor.

    Then I laid out my batting, easing it in, being very careful not to stretch it. I started from the center out to the ends with the iron on tape. Then I pulled back the batting and sprayed only a small section to begin with, down the length of the quilt, and carefully smoothed the batting over it while kneeling on the completed side of the quilt (so I was behind the batting smoothing it forward over the taped down back). I did 2 more sections this way, then did the same for basting the top down to the batting.

    And while I won't say that it was fun, it wasn't the torture I felt it was the other night. I didn't get frustrated, and it went much faster. But I caused most of my own grief because of the way I chose to do things the first time around. After all of that, I would consider splitting the backing again in the future on a larger quilt - since I have a better idea about what to do and not do.
    Dawn

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