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Thread: Sandwich trouble

  1. #1
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    Question Sandwich trouble

    I have read on here about taping the backing down to the floor, then putting on the batting and the quilt top. All were smoothed out and ready to be pinned. How in the dickens do you get your hand underneath to pin the three layers and still have it be smooth? I taped, layered, and tried to get my pins in but the tape came undone and then it wasn't smooth anymore. Have wood floors so don't want to scratch the floor and definitely don't want to spray baste.
    What is the trick? I finally resorted to back to the carpet and on my hands and needs. Might as well pray while I was down there. LOL!!

  2. #2
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
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    I slide a cutting mat underneath, then put the pins in from above without hands underneath. But what do I know -still putting off re-doing the quilt that got creases in the back when I sandwiched it recently!
    I visited the local painter and decorator shop to ask about the blue painter's tape that was recommended to me here. I think he was a bit surprised to be helping someone with their sewing, but confirmed that this tape is available in the UK. He didn't have it in stock though - but found me some that was designed to go on wallpaper and delicate surfaces, so I'm hoping that will do the trick.

  3. #3
    Super Member sewmom's Avatar
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    There is a trick where you put a large marble underneath the backing which holds up the backing from the floor. You then roll the marble to the next area and pin. I have a tile floor, so this hasn't been an issue. I've also pinned them on a table using clamps. I am now trying Sharon Schambert's way of hand basting. Haven't decided if I REALLY like it or not, but at least I'm not on my knees on a tile floor.
    A time to tear, And a time to sew;
    A time to keep silence, And a time to speak;

  4. #4
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    this helps explain the popularity of all type of frames (hand and machine) that let you mount the backing first, layer the batting in and put the quilt face on top.... no basting... even for hand quilting, John Flynn's frames were sold for this long before he put them under a machine...

    don't overlook the local machine quilters...most of us will baste a quilt for a one hour charge and it is flat, no tucks no back aches....

    but I have to say, the marble thing is ingenious!

  5. #5
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    I have problems with sandwiching too. I have used the blue painters tape which works so-so. Some of my friends use spray, but they have tile floors and I have carpet. No sure if spray would work for me.

    Sandwiching is my least favorite part of making a quilt.

  6. #6
    Senior Member rj.neihart's Avatar
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    When I place my 3 layers onto the carpet, I baste with long stitches. Then I place safety pins on that area. I start in the middle and work my way toward the edging. The basting stitches hold the pieces together so I can smooth out the backing while I'm hand quilting.

  7. #7
    Senior Member SherryW's Avatar
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    It takes time and I use fusible batting and iron it on the top side while it's still on the floor. Then I pick it up carefully and bring to ironing board and iron the other side with the safety pins in place. Works for me. I also have hardwood floors and I haven't scratched them. The batting comes loose from the fabric very easily; it's not a permanent bond.

  8. #8
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    Use kitchen island

    I use my kitchen island. It's 4' x 6' now, but my old one was 48" x 30".
    If you don't have an island, one of those hobby/cutting tables with the fold up sides will work well.
    Although I haven't basted a king size on it yet, basting on the island has been working for me.
    I think it's important the surface be flat and that the back be free of wrinkles before you lay it down.
    Smooth each layer out from the center as you lay them on top of each other.
    You can never have enough safety pins.
    Make sure the back is at least 4" larger on all sides to allow for migration when you are smoothing out the layers from the center.
    Start pinning from the center of your section (the section is the part on top of the island at the moment)
    I keep smoothing as I'm pinning - I can usually feel any wrinkles as I go.
    When I'm done with the section, I gently move the quilt sandwich over the island to do a new section.

    There are a few good books that have instructions & tips for basting:

    Harriet Hargrave - Heirloom machine quilting, published by C & T Publishing

    Barbara Schaffeld & Bev Vickery - Hand Quilt Without a Frame, published by Lone Tree Press

    The Complete Book of Machine Quilting, second edition by Robbie & Tony Fanning published by Chilton Book Company
    Charlene

  9. #9
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    If I am basting large quilts I take them to church and use the large tables in Fellowship Hall. If the quilt is larger than one table, just push two together. Works for me!

  10. #10
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sewmom View Post
    There is a trick where you put a large marble underneath the backing which holds up the backing from the floor. You then roll the marble to the next area and pin. I have a tile floor, so this hasn't been an issue. I've also pinned them on a table using clamps. I am now trying Sharon Schambert's way of hand basting. Haven't decided if I REALLY like it or not, but at least I'm not on my knees on a tile floor.
    I love this tip! thanks
    Nancy in western NY
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    T – is it True? H – is it Helpful? I – is it Inspiring? N – is it Necessary? K – is it Kind?


  11. #11
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sewmom View Post
    There is a trick where you put a large marble underneath the backing which holds up the backing from the floor. You then roll the marble to the next area and pin. I have a tile floor, so this hasn't been an issue. I've also pinned them on a table using clamps. I am now trying Sharon Schambert's way of hand basting. Haven't decided if I REALLY like it or not, but at least I'm not on my knees on a tile floor.
    I use one of the flat sided glass marbles that you use in fish tanks and vases.
    “The simplest toy, one which even the youngest child can operate, is called a grandparent.” Sam Levenson

  12. #12
    Super Member Tink's Mom's Avatar
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by amma View Post
    I use one of the flat sided glass marbles that you use in fish tanks and vases.
    I have some of those!!! Going right now, and getting 2 for the sewing room...1 to use and 1 for when I can't find the other...

    Thanks!!!
    Tink's Mom (My name is really Susie)

  13. #13
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    I just gave up the whole "taping and crawling around on the floor" nonsense and I use Sharon Schamber's sensible two board method sitting at a table.

  14. #14
    Super Member Buckeye Rose's Avatar
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    Once I discovered spray basting, I knew I would never pin again! I can buy a large can at Walmart of the Dritz spray (no longer selling June Tailor) for $8 and it's worth every penny. I never have to get down on my knees again. If the quilt is small enough, I do it on my king size bed....otherwise I take it to my daughters house and use her floor (large open area).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Quiltersbox View Post
    I use my kitchen island. It's 4' x 6' now, but my old one was 48" x 30".
    If you don't have an island, one of those hobby/cutting tables with the fold up sides will work well.
    Although I haven't basted a king size on it yet, basting on the island has been working for me.
    I think it's important the surface be flat and that the back be free of wrinkles before you lay it down.
    Smooth each layer out from the center as you lay them on top of each other.
    You can never have enough safety pins.
    Make sure the back is at least 4" larger on all sides to allow for migration when you are smoothing out the layers from the center.
    Start pinning from the center of your section (the section is the part on top of the island at the moment)
    I keep smoothing as I'm pinning - I can usually feel any wrinkles as I go.
    When I'm done with the section, I gently move the quilt sandwich over the island to do a new section.

    There are a few good books that have instructions & tips for basting:

    Harriet Hargrave - Heirloom machine quilting, published by C & T Publishing

    Barbara Schaffeld & Bev Vickery - Hand Quilt Without a Frame, published by Lone Tree Press

    The Complete Book of Machine Quilting, second edition by Robbie & Tony Fanning published by Chilton Book Company

    I'm going to try this method. It would sure beat crawling on my hands and knees. Getting too old for that. My island is big enought to hold a full sized so it should work. Thanks..

  16. #16
    Junior Member Joy.lynn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scissor Queen View Post
    I just gave up the whole "taping and crawling around on the floor" nonsense and I use Sharon Schamber's sensible two board method sitting at a table.
    This is the way i do it. This is so easy, no tape. I can't use sprays, it does sound easy.

  17. #17
    Super Member thimblebug6000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SherryW View Post
    It takes time and I use fusible batting and iron it on the top side while it's still on the floor. Then I pick it up carefully and bring to ironing board and iron the other side with the safety pins in place. Works for me. I also have hardwood floors and I haven't scratched them. The batting comes loose from the fabric very easily; it's not a permanent bond.
    I have some fusible batting that was bought for a specific project and not used. I have been wondering how on earth to iron it into a sandwich. It's fusible on both sides and I sure don't want to have the heat of the iron go through to the floor. Do you know if there's a video showing how this is done?

  18. #18
    Senior Member Kim Bohannon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scissor Queen View Post
    I just gave up the whole "taping and crawling around on the floor" nonsense and I use Sharon Schamber's sensible two board method sitting at a table.
    this is the method I am going to start using... looks easy
    I quilt for my sanity!

  19. #19
    Super Member 117becca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scissor Queen View Post
    I just gave up the whole "taping and crawling around on the floor" nonsense and I use Sharon Schamber's sensible two board method sitting at a table.
    this what i do, too.
    my name is becca and i'm a quilt-a-holic :-)

  20. #20
    Senior Member AnnieF's Avatar
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    I sandwich on my dining room table. Put the backing down and use clamps from the tool box to hold it in place. Then the batting and top float on top. I pin-baste. I put the pin in, when it hits the table, I pivot it up and close it. I have never had pleats in the back or any other problem with the sandwich.

  21. #21
    Senior Member KerryK's Avatar
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    I watched the Sharon Schamber video and it does look easy on the size she uses, like a wall hanging. But has anyone used this method for a queen or king quilt? I wish she had used a large size to show how she does that. Would she use longer boards, or perhaps do the center section first and then move to the sides? If you have used this method on a large quilt, I'd appreciate your input.

  22. #22
    Senior Member KerryK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnnieF View Post
    I sandwich on my dining room table. Put the backing down and use clamps from the tool box to hold it in place. Then the batting and top float on top. I pin-baste. I put the pin in, when it hits the table, I pivot it up and close it. I have never had pleats in the back or any other problem with the sandwich.
    Does this not scratch the surface of your table, or do you protect it with something?

  23. #23
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnnieF View Post
    I sandwich on my dining room table. Put the backing down and use clamps from the tool box to hold it in place. Then the batting and top float on top. I pin-baste. I put the pin in, when it hits the table, I pivot it up and close it. I have never had pleats in the back or any other problem with the sandwich.
    I do this way also, my table has a glass top so I can't damage the table. Works great.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  24. #24
    Senior Member CarrieC's Avatar
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    The marble idea is a stroke of GENIUS! Thank you thank you! I currently use the tape and cutting mat method. I can't wait to give this idea a whirl!!!
    Carrie, Queen of the Seam Rippers!

  25. #25
    Senior Member EmbQuilt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scissor Queen View Post
    I just gave up the whole "taping and crawling around on the floor" nonsense and I use Sharon Schamber's sensible two board method sitting at a table.
    I just started this method too. I like it, much easier.

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