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Thread: Need help with quilt problem

  1. #1
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    Need help with quilt problem

    Hello QB members,

    I have a prolem and I hope you can help me.
    I am making a quilt for my nephew's new home. He asked for a black and white quilt (white background) with a grey backing.
    Here's my problem: did the top (pleased with that), found backing fabric in grey, sandwiched it all, started quilting....... now the backing is showing through the batting so all the piecing seams are clearly visible.
    I feel that these seamlines are very distracting.

    Do you have any idea how I can solve this "showing through" problem?
    If I line the top with white fabric will it become too stif?

    Please, any suggestions?
    Thanks,

    Katie in The Netherlands
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  2. #2
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    Hi Katie. You did a great job with the quilt. As for being able to see your seams, I am sorry but I do not have an answer for you. I can tell they are even and show the 1/4" we try to achieve.

    I am sure one of our boards experienced quilters will read your post and have a suggestion for you soon. Thanks for posting.


    Linda

    Sew little time and sew many ideas

  3. #3
    Super Member MacThayer's Avatar
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    White is so notorious for showing seams. That's why I stick with Kona white and lights. Really helps with this problem.

    What you can do with your current situation is to back each block with fusible interfacing. I've used the lighter weight of the fusible interfacings to solve exactly this problem, but do a "test block" first to make sure what you pick out will do the job. Would be great if you had some "extra" interfacings lying around to test on the blocks.

    I've tried just lining the top in the past. I haven't found it to be effective, especially if my batting is already white. The only time it really worked was when I used a white sheet, and then tacked it down everywhere, so the sheet was held tightly against the top. It wasn't working otherwise. Just a word of warning, if you're planning to FMQ this quilt, the sheet makes it a bit harder to quilt, and you should go through more than 1 needle because the sheet is woven to tightly, it will dull your needle. But I did FMQ mine, so don't let it deter you!
    MacThayer

  4. #4
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    first question is what color is your batting? My guess is you are using a warm/natural or other natural cotton fabric. You have to use bright white batting that should keep the white seams from showing. I have used both kona white and another thinner white, the batting is the key

  5. #5
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    You can see the seams through the white fabric but it doesn't spoil the look of the quilt. They are neat and nice and straight so don't worry about it. If they were in weird places or angles that distracted from the pattern I might change it.

  6. #6
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I personally don't find the seams distracting either.
    What color is your batting? Here in the states, they make a bleached cotton batting that helps in this situation. You could try adding a layer of light weight cotton, or maybe white flannel between the top and the batting and see if that helps. The extra layer will add warmth. If you have any left over fabric, I would make up a small sample and experiment a bit to see what works. The sample could then be used as a doll quilt or table topper.
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  7. #7
    Super Member nhweaver's Avatar
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    As quilters, we are our own worst critic. I didn't even notice the seams, until I read your post. Lovely job.
    If life gives you lemons, make a margarita.

  8. #8
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    i agree that the seams are not distracting. it's a great quilt.
    Nancy in western NY
    before you speak THINK
    T is it True? H is it Helpful? I is it Inspiring? N is it Necessary? K is it Kind?


  9. #9
    Super Member HillCountryGal's Avatar
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    You might try some sort of backing as suggested...

    OR, quilt it and call it good. I agree, we are our own worst critics. Once it's done and on the bed, doubt most people wouldn't see what you're seeing. Good work.. it's really nice.
    Last edited by HillCountryGal; 05-05-2013 at 04:45 AM.

  10. #10
    Super Member ArtsyOne's Avatar
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    I've never considered this to be a problem. After all, everyone knows that a quilt is made up of many pieces of fabric sewn together. I think that once you quilt it, the seams won't be so noticeable. Yours are so beautifully straight that you should consider them a part of the design.
    A fabric stash is always missing that one fabric needed to finish the quilt on which you're working.

  11. #11
    Super Member Dina's Avatar
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    I wouldn't worry about it. It looks fine just as it is. I think you are just too close to it at the moment. If you have already sandwiched it and have started quilting it, I would just let it be. That being said, I sew with white a lot, and if I use the Warm and Natural that comes in white, the seams don't show...in case that helps.

    Beautiful quilt, by the way!!

    Dina

  12. #12
    Super Member watson's mom's Avatar
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    I love black and white quilts and yours is beautiful. If it was mine, I would leave it as is but would quilt it using black thread . People will be drawn to the design of the quilting because it will stand out and they won't even see the seams . They really are straight and I kind of like seeing them, like a design. JMO

  13. #13
    Senior Member GammaLou's Avatar
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    I agree that a white batting is necessary. I made an Ohio Star and had to get a bright white batting to keep seams from showing. The natural was just too dark for the white background.

    Yours is a beautiful quilt. I'm sure your Nephew will love it!!

  14. #14
    Senior Member JenelTX's Avatar
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    Actually, I think the white lines can be considered a design feature. They're very sharp and modern looking.
    Jenel Looney
    Assistant to Susan Mallery
    New York Times bestselling author

  15. #15
    Power Poster alikat110's Avatar
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    Beautiful quilt. Seams don't brother me either...I like the suggestion of lining blocks.

  16. #16
    Super Member TerryQuilter's Avatar
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    Looks gr8 to me. To me the seams are barely visible, your nephew will love it.
    The Trike Riding Quilting Diva

  17. #17
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    it's a lovely quilt. I would suggest going back and stitching 1/4 around the pieces. that way, it will help fool the eye so it doesn't see the shadow of seams through the white. good luck.

  18. #18
    Super Member JulieR's Avatar
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    I kind of love how they look. I would leave them for sure.

  19. #19
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    I think you are being too critical - most won't look that closely - they will see the overall design and never notice the seam allowances. Nice job!

  20. #20
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    Hi,

    Thank you all for your advice.
    I showed the quilt to my nephew and his family and they did not even notice the seams!!!
    So I guess I was indeed being too critical of my own work.

    I did use bright white polyester batting (Hobbs 80/20 cotton batting made my white fabric look yellowish) so the problem was caused by the grey backing fabric.
    But hopefully the seams will not be as prominent after it has been quilted.
    After reading your comments I have decided to leave it as it is and finish it.

    In this picture you can see the whole quilt with a part of the backing fabric showing.
    Please don't look too close at all the wrinkles ...it is still a work in progress...

    Thanks for your help.

    Katie
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  21. #21
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    What batting are you using? I have noticed that 100% cotton and 80/20 batting are more solid than polyester. Polyester batting is more "see through" than cotton, in my experience, allowing more of the backing color to influence the quilt top.

  22. #22
    Super Member Nanny's dollface's Avatar
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    I am trying to see what is so distracting in the quilt and sorry to say I can not find anything that is distracting. What I do see is a quilt that has geometrical lines and angles that are pleasing to the modern eye. Beautiful quilt!

  23. #23
    Super Member DOTTYMO's Avatar
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    Everyone has given fantastic advice, thinking outside the box.
    How are you going to quilt it. If you are using a colour or even a pattern over the seam area making the
    Line look part of the design.
    Hope this helps.
    The quilt is wonderful seams great and if it was mine would be going in a show.
    Finished is better than a UFO

  24. #24
    Senior Member cdmmiracles's Avatar
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    I don't see it as a problem either. It looks like that is part of the design......I would leave it!

  25. #25
    Super Member KathyKat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tartan View Post
    You can see the seams through the white fabric but it doesn't spoil the look of the quilt. They are neat and nice and straight so don't worry about it. If they were in weird places or angles that distracted from the pattern I might change it.
    I agree! I think they just add another interesting element to the quilt so I would leave them. Then just remember some of the tips for avoiding it the next time. The quilt is pretty!
    Kathleen, a lass with a bit of the Irish in her blood and a whole lot of Irish in her heart

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