Wednesday, January 20, 2010


This pattern is called, SLICE OF CHARM. It takes two charm packs and a little yardage for the backgrounds and borders. (p.s. it is my design for her) Check it out at Cotton Way...oh and it's Bonnie's 20th year celebration on her Cotton Way company, stop by and tell her hello!
Have you ever wanted to try your hand at machine quilting on your own sewing machine? Well, here are a few tips.
First of all you need a good way to sandwich your quilt pieces together. I personally don't enjoy quilting large quilt on my own machine, but a lot of people do. So you need a good fabric adhesive like Sullivans.
It is acid free.
No ozone depleting chemicals, but you should not inhale the fumes especially if you are pregnant.
Your back fabric needs to be 2" on all sides bigger than your top. Then I use 1 1/2" painters tape to tape the back to the floor. The painter's tape doesn't leave a sticky residue and you can reuse it.
1. Start with a small piece of tape in the center of one side. Then continue with strips about 12"-14" in length and tape one complete side.
2. Pull the quilt tight as you tape the opposite side of the back, and tape it to the floor.
3. Tape a third side.
4. Pull the final side tight and tape to the floor. Pull the corners a bit as your tape them. Sometimes I adjust the tape so the corners are pulled tight. The more tight the back, the less lightly you will have wrinkles as you quilt.
Lay your batting on top of the back. It should be about 2" bigger all the way around like your back.
Fold the batting back onto itself because you are going to spray the underneath side of the batting where it will lay against the quilt back.
Lay a sheet under the batting where it touches the floor so as you spray, you don't get "over spray" on your flooring. Although it does clean up with warm water and soap, and it does wash out of your sheets.
1. Spray lightly the batting clear to the corners.
2. Fold batting back onto the quilt back smoothing from the center out to the edges, making sure the batting does not have any wrinkles.
3. Fold the other half of the batting back onto itself, same as the first half. Change the sheet to catch the over spray for this half.
4. Spray lightly all over to the corners.
5. Fold batting back onto the backing, smoothing from the center out to the edges.

I forgot to take photos of the top....sorry. But it is just the same method for spraying as for the batting.
1. Fold the quilt top in half onto itself and spray clear to the corners.
2. Fold top back onto the batting and smooth from the center out to the edges, making sure you don't have any wrinkles.
3. Fold other half of top onto itself and spray.
4. Fold quilt top back onto the batting, smoothing from the center out to the edges.
Now you have done what is often called, "sandwiching a quilt."
I like to put a few pins in my quilt. I use the largest pins I can find at Walmart.
I place the pins about 6"-8" apart and take then out as I quilt.
After your quilt is pinned, carefully pull the tape off. I roll it back onto the tape roll and reuse it again, sometimes more than once. It doesn't look pretty, but we are not going for pretty here!
Now you are ready for machine quilting. You will need a darning foot or an embroidery foot for your machine, it has a hole in it. I will tell you a little more about that in my next post. The best advise I can give you for trying to machine quilt your own quilts is, Practice! You have heard the old saying, "How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, Practice, Practice." So, "how do you get good at machine quilting? Practice, Practice, Practice!" Don't start on the heirloom quilt you made for your grandchild. Sandwich some old fabric into 18"-24" squares and PRACTICE!