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stabilize quilt before quilting, or not

stabilize quilt before quilting, or not

Old 09-07-2010, 10:36 AM
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I need some help. I going to quilt a 60 X 70 quilt on my domestic sewing machine. The quilt is safety pin basted. The blocks are 6 1/2" and there is sashing. In the blocks I'm going to FM a simple design. And I know something has to be done in sashing but not sure what.
BUT - a friend suggested that before I do anything I should stabilize the quilt at least with one line of stitches down the center top to bottom and one across the center from left to right. I don't usually stabilize because I don't like the look of that stitching interferring with my FM quilting. But in this case along the sashing as close to in the ditch as possible might be the "sashing" quilting needed. The cornerstones formed by stabiliizing can then be quilted with a smaller version of the block quilting. SO, how do I stabilize on each side of the sashing. Do I go from top to bottom and do all the vertical lines and then do all the horizontal lines? Or, one vertical, one horizontal, one vertical, one horizontal....... If all vertical first then do I start at center of quilt and do center to right, then go back an do center to left? And then do the same for horizontal lines? Or is there another way.
You can see I need some help. My first impulse was to quilt in the blocks first and then see what I thought was appropriate for the sashing, until friend said you really should stabilize the quilt first.
What do you do, or, how would you do it?
Thanks for you help with this, I'll let you know how I finally do it and if I can figure out how to post a picture I'll do that too.
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Old 09-07-2010, 10:47 AM
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If I pin baste I do not do the stabalizing. I begin in the center of the quilt and work out. Do what works best for you.
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Old 09-07-2010, 10:53 AM
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My pins or spray basting stablize my quilts with no problem. Why make life more confusing and difficult ??
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Old 09-07-2010, 11:03 AM
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I agree with that
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Old 09-07-2010, 11:18 AM
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How taut did you have the backing when you pin-basted the sandwich? Reason for asking: If it isn't taut, then the grid can end up puckered in one direction and you won't notice until you have one side quilted with the Stitch-in-the-ditch method. If it is nice and taut, then I would roll half of it and starting with the center line, SID the straight lines.

Could you do a serpentine line that meanders around the ditch? It may be a better fit to go with the FMQ design?
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Old 09-07-2010, 11:20 AM
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I only do stablizing stitches when I am quilting a double wedding ring and that is done along the curves of the melons. Diane Gaudyinski stablizes with water soluble thread. That way her sashes and borders stay straight and aren't pulled by the other quilting. And it washes out. I haven't ever tried it, though.
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:06 PM
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If you want to stabilize, I would use water-soluble thread in both bobbin and top. Superior Threads has some good info online about water-soluble threads. For this type of work, I think you would want the heavier version they sell.

I would also spray starch on both the front and back to discourage puckers.
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:18 PM
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No, I don't believe you need to stabilize, but the most important thing you do need to do is start in the center and move out. So do a center block, then move to one next to it, and keep filling in the center blocks first.
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