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Thread: Trying to block a quilt alone

  1. #1
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Trying to get the quilt blocked by myself and it's not going to work. I washed it last night (hand wash setting and 2 heavy duty spin cycles) and it lost 2" in all directions. I got foam board insulation and following the directions from Karen McTavish's CD. I just can't do it alone and be able to keep the tape on one side while the other is stretched out to the correct size and pinned. My daughter is coming over this weekend so she will be roped into helping me.

    My bedroom is the only room big enough to lay it out and that I can keep the cat out.
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  2. #2
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    I use those heavy T pins that you use for upholstery and pin directly into the carpeting at a slight angle. Works like a charm. :-D

  3. #3
    Super Member Barb_MO's Avatar
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    I wondered how much would be lost on the quilting of this quilt. I recently sold a quilt that had lost 2 in. on eash side after quilting. I got it back from the buyer and am having to add to it.

    Will the quilt have to be blocked each time it is washed>

  4. #4
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    I am using the t-pins. I pinned a corner first using my 12 1/2" ruler to make sure it was square, figured that might be the best way to do it alone. I fussed with it last night until I was too frustrated trying to measure and pin myself and keep it straight and square.

  5. #5
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_MO
    Will the quilt have to be blocked each time it is washed>
    That's what Karen said in her video, Quilting For Show, that the quilt would keep it's shape until the next time it was washed.

  6. #6
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    I have to admit I've never had to block a quilt after I've bound it! I just make sure that it is square before I bind it.

  7. #7
    Junior Member QuiltingWithMissy's Avatar
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    I learned this a few years back. So when I make a quilt for sale now I add at least 5 inches to it. Then I tell the buyer why I added the inches and what to expect when they wash it. I also tell the customer that contacts me for just a quilting job that this is going to happen and they may want to add to the quilt. So right now my customers seem to be happy.

  8. #8
    Super Member Lisanne's Avatar
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    Could this be avoided by pre-washing the fabric?

  9. #9
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lisanne
    Could this be avoided by pre-washing the fabric?
    No, it's just the nature of a quilt. Batting itself shrinks about 5%.

  10. #10
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    My aunt the super quilter has foam core boards she has marked with several sizes. The rectangles are drawn on to the foam core with some kind of permanent marking pin. Perfect straight sides and square corners. She can then lay her quilt on the lines and pin it in place. It seems to work for her.

  11. #11
    Senior Member RatherB Quilting's Avatar
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    Stupid question, but what is the purpose of "blocking" a quilt? It looks like the quilt is already quilted right? Why not just bind it and be done? Why does it have to be stretched out to a certain size?
    It's a stunning quilt!
    (also, would washing the batting as well as the fabric help?)

  12. #12
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Using poly batting and prewashing fabric will make the quilt not shrink. But the "look" of cotton batting after it's shrunk a bit can add charm to certain types of designs. I use the poly batting if I don't want shrinkage and to keep it flat looking-for the more modern types of quilts. I have to say, that when the quilt shrinks up with cotton batting, it tends to hide many boo-boos and not quite in the ditch stitching. So that's a good thing.

  13. #13
    springtime's Avatar
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    I'm so new, I don't have a comment about blocking. But wanted to say, What a lovely quilt! Blessings

  14. #14
    Super Member pittsburgpam's Avatar
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    The purpose of blocking is to make a quilt flat and square, primarily for show and hanging, so that it doesn't have ripples and distortions and hangs straight. Personally, I don't see much need for blocking if it's going on a bed.

    That's a good idea to mark the foam board.

  15. #15
    Super Member Maride's Avatar
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    I block the quilt after is quilted but before is binded. I don't have to do it again, as it keeps the shape well.

  16. #16
    Senior Member yourstrulyquilts's Avatar
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    I've made over 150 quilts and never blocked one of them.
    YTQ

  17. #17
    Super Member Fiber Artist's Avatar
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    Love the quilt!!!

  18. #18
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    I can't help you with the blocking but that quilt is beautiful. Great job and good luck on getting it square. Great quilt.

  19. #19
    Super Member Oklahoma Suzie's Avatar
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    nice

  20. #20
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    Wow, love the quilt! Good luck on blocking it!

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