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Marking Patterns on Quilts

Marking Patterns on Quilts

Old 02-24-2021, 06:15 PM
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Default Marking Patterns on Quilts

I was wondering what method of marking patterns on quilts are used. I've found that I don't do well with using plastic templates, but do well by marking the quilt top, and then slowly following those markings to do the quilt process.

But using heat erasable pens is a pain. Why? It seems these pens aren't as easy to use on fabric as they are on paper. I usually have to go over the lines I draw several times before I can see the line well enough to follow.

I am guessing chalk is probably the preferred method, but chalk is very difficult to remove from the fabric, unless you wash things after quilting. I have a big fear of doing all this hard piecing, basting and quilting, only to have the washing machine tear up the quilt into shreds and pieces, and on top of all of that, shrink the whole thing into an ugly sight..

I use cotton thread to do my piecing, and all the other parts of making a quilt. I am wondering if maybe polyester thread might be better, as I am guessing it won't fall apart as easily as cotton does. Of course, I really don't have much experience yet, so I am here to get comments and suggestions before I delve into my next quilt.
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Old 02-24-2021, 07:03 PM
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I use white chalk to mark on medium to dark fabrics. Coloured chalks can be difficult to remove. There are many different methods for marking a quilt pattern.
1. Put a fabric on the back with a nice design and quilt from the back following the fabric design.
2.Golden Thread paper is meant to be stitched through and removed after quilting.
3.Quilt an all over design that doesn’t need to be marked.
4. Use ruler foot and rulers to do designs.
5. Some QB members like Crayola washable markers.
6.An old method was to use white soap slivers to mark a top etc....


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Old 02-24-2021, 08:26 PM
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I prefer the Frixion markers (they have a medium fine point) for marking my quilt designs.

I don't usually mark the whole design - only if I haven't used the design before and I'm trying it out. Usually, I just mark "landmarks," like the circle in a feather wreath and maybe the outside and inside limits for the feathers.

This was the way that I planned my most recent finish.



The markers last a long time if you keep them in ziplock bags when you're not working with them.

Edited to add: I always wash my quilts with several color catchers after I make them - they get softer and all the starch and manufacturing crap comes out of the fabric in a good wash.

I don't want to make a quilt for someone and give it to them "pristine," only to have a seam come apart or a patch to bleed into the nearby light fabric.

If a quilt looks better flatter, rather than the crinkly appearance after laundering, then I just iron it to bring back the "new fabric" look.

Last edited by thepolyparrot; 02-24-2021 at 08:40 PM. Reason: Adding
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Old 02-25-2021, 03:43 AM
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I've tried a number of methods of marking and the one I like the very best is the Crayola ultrathin washable markers. Certainly the price is right and they are commonly available for purchase in an assortment of colors. They leave a nice mark, stay until you are ready to be done with them. I have not had any problem with them not washing out. I suppose the only thing I might not like about them is if I didn't want to launder the quilt when I've finished the quilt. Keep in mind that the markings don't come out with a spritz of water--must be actually laundered.
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Old 02-25-2021, 04:32 AM
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I usually straight line quilt or simply use a medium size meander on all my quilts. Once in a great while a loop-de-loop design. None of these require marking for me. However when I do have to mark something special I will use Crayola Washable fine point markers. Color catchers in the washer and all is good.
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Old 02-25-2021, 04:56 AM
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I don't usually mark since I rarely do anything other than basic meandering or loop de loops, but when I do mark, I use chalk and don't find it hard to come out, in fact, just the opposite, so I only mark a small area at a time.
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Old 02-25-2021, 06:03 AM
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I just do FMQ and never mark a design, so I never have a problem.
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Old 02-25-2021, 06:20 AM
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The reason I wish to mark out designs is that I have no visualisation of of the pattern locked in my brain. Just looking at a picture doesn't put it from the brain to the hands. Maybe if I have done three or four quilts with a particular design would then allow me to do it from memory free motion. I can't even duplicate a simple loop over and over without it looking terrible.
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Old 02-25-2021, 06:22 AM
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I found that plastic stencils work really well for me. I use Crayola washable markers with them and have had success that way. If I need white I use chalk.
As to thread- I use poly or cotton.
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Old 02-25-2021, 07:52 AM
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question= do you use detergent to wash out markers or just water the first time?
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