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BethDurand

Measure twice, quilt once

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I hope I'm not the only person who has done this, and I'm sure I won't be the last.

Last night I loaded a quilt, quilted 11 blocks in the ditch, and did a pantograph in the 12th. I was basting down the bottom of the quilt top when I realised that there wasn't enough fabric. First thought: Oh no, the customer didn't give me enough fabric for the backing! Second thought, and realization that I had messed up: Oh no! I've got the backing turned 90 degrees off! Imagine my joy at realising that I got to frog all of that lovely ditch stitching, and it was so pretty too! Watched a movie and ripped it all apart, and now I get to load again, and start all over. While pressing it again today I also noticed that one of the backing fabrics has a definite direction, which had also been off. Live and learn, I guess.

Beth


Beth Durand

Elizabeth Originals Custom Quilting

www.eocquilting.com

beth@eocquilting.com

2006 APQS Millenium

Authorized APQS Dealer

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I seem to have done all the terrible things everyone else has done....it is so good to know I am not the only one. My disaster was that my first customer dropped off her quilt and her muslin backing I had to square up the back and by the time it was square, and I had loaded it - everything worked fine until I got to the last row of the quilt and realized that I needed about 3 more inches of backing. I had measured it before I squared it up and it was fine, but it was so out of whack, by the time I cut off the uneven ends it was too short.:mad:


Mary Beth 

Powered by 2009 Freedom

Future winner of the Millie Sweepstakes

http://marysnutshell.blogspot.com/




 

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Oh boy can I relate to this topic I have been pulling stitches from the same quilt for about a week have done nothing else..to make matters worse I am not even making anything on it at this point...it is a customer from ebay and it is her daughters first quilt she has made and is looking forward to getting it back nicely quilted. Not only is the quilt way not square there are many loose seams that has come apart with ripping stitches out and a few areas where the top fabric ripped some it will be a miracle when I get this one done..my lesson when something feels wrong as this did stop and pull a few stitches instead of a 3/4 quilt job on a full size quilt...Yikes......Jackie

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Beth,

Been there. Done that. Once. Never again. Not fun to rip out.

Now I always make sure there is enough backing fabric and batting before I load the quilt. I don't want it to happen again!!

Debbi


Debbi Prodigy w/ Intelliquilter , A-1 Platinum Elite

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Guest LA

Hi Beth!

We all feel your pain, it is an easy thing to have happen during the loading process. I have yet to load a quilt with out some kind of interruption. :o

Do you remember in class that we talked about writing the backing measurements on your invoice as you load your quilt & make a notation with an arrow indicating which way you loaded?

That way you will always be on track knowing what measurement is running in either direction. ;)

Originally posted by BethDurand

I hope I'm not the only person who has done this, and I'm sure I won't be the last.

Last night I loaded a quilt, quilted 11 blocks in the ditch, and did a pantograph in the 12th. I was basting down the bottom of the quilt top when I realised that there wasn't enough fabric. First thought: Oh no, the customer didn't give me enough fabric for the backing! Second thought, and realization that I had messed up: Oh no! I've got the backing turned 90 degrees off! Imagine my joy at realising that I got to frog all of that lovely ditch stitching, and it was so pretty too! Watched a movie and ripped it all apart, and now I get to load again, and start all over. While pressing it again today I also noticed that one of the backing fabrics has a definite direction, which had also been off. Live and learn, I guess.

Beth

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I haven't done it but I have a great fear of it happening. Here's what I do. I measure the backing and the top and write it down. Then I write down how much I should have left over on each side. Example:

Top: 80 x 90

Backing: 88 x 100

Leftovers: Sides - 4"/Top & Bottom - 5"

If I had loaded this quilt wrong, when I go to check it, I would have 10" left over on each side and would know right off the bat that I had a problem.

Also, when I'm measuring the backing and the top, and deciding which way to load the quilt, I make a little mark with either chalk or a blue marker on the center of the ends that will be loaded (either on the top and bottom or the sides . . depending on which way the quilt will be loaded).

I check it sometimes 2 or 3 times before starting to stitch and after reading what happened to Beth, I'll probably be checking 4 or 5 times! I do hate frogging!


Judy Laquidara

Brownwood, TX

APQS Millennium

Blog: http://www.patchworktimes.com

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This thread is about a week to late for me! The last quilt I loaded, I loaded wrong and payed the price dearly. Next time I will listen to that inner voice in my head that won't shut up! Whoa is me......


Sherry Rogers-Harrison

Innova Pro SR 26" with Lightning Stitch and Auto Pilot

http://www.sewfarsewgood.org

mailto:sewfarsewgood@comcast.net

206 412-4720

http://www.facebook.com/people/Sherry-Rogers-harrison/1353418232

 

~you can't hurt your eyesight by looking on the bright side~

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And all this time I thought it was just me having this problem :D It's nice to know that even the experts are running into these type of mishaps ;)

I had a couple of these over the past year. I try to remember to measure the backing when the customer drops off their quilt top and backing but sometimes I just get so caught up in chatting with the person (I never met a quilter I didn't like...they make the best friends) that I forget and then find out when I am loading a quilt I will be short if I didn't make some adjustments (sewing a little extra muslin scraps to the edges of the backing just so I have enough to load). I also have a space on my order form for the size of the backings (which only works if you remember to use it, lol).

Joann

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Beth, that's why I load my top on the front roller first and double check the backing size against the top before it goes on the machine. Re-pinning backings is not something I like to have to do!! So far I've been lucky and haven't quilted on the wrong direction. jeri


JUST QUILTING

APQS SALES & SERVICE

Fil-Tec / Glide Distributor

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How about quilting 2 passes on a panto, I went to check my tension as I was breaking thread, and when I looked at the backing, what did I see? Why, of course, I saw the WRONG SIDE of the backing fabric! Thank goodness I had need to L@@K at it! So, I revert to the law of 10s!

The law of 10s is, what ever takes one minute to quilt, takes ten minutes to rip!:mad:

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Originally posted by BethDurand

I hope I'm not the only person who has done this, and I'm sure I won't be the last.

Last night I loaded a quilt, quilted 11 blocks in the ditch, and did a pantograph in the 12th. I was basting down the bottom of the quilt top when I realised that there wasn't enough fabric. First thought: Oh no, the customer didn't give me enough fabric for the backing! Second thought, and realization that I had messed up: Oh no! I've got the backing turned 90 degrees off! Imagine my joy at realising that I got to frog all of that lovely ditch stitching, and it was so pretty too! Watched a movie and ripped it all apart, and now I get to load again, and start all over. While pressing it again today I also noticed that one of the backing fabrics has a definite direction, which had also been off. Live and learn, I guess.

Beth


A4D3F1A8FC6E09FA7B588F421C673A69.png

Debbie Cadwallender

APQS Sales-Service-Education

Central Michigan

517-304-6954

afinishedquilt@tds.net

www.die-ingtoquilt.com

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Someone suggested to me that having the customer indicate which edge is the top of their backing and quilt with a safety pin is the way to go. It puts the responsibility on them. Of course you have to decide if you're going to trust their measurements or check for yourself. It at least gives you a point of reference knowing what they were thinking. Do I do this? Not very often but I do think it is a great idea. Everytime I struggle trying to figure out which way is "up" I swear that I will start this policy. I think I would still verify that everything fit since Ive had a "couple" backings that were too small over the years. The worst problem is the extra wide backings that are cut off the bolt and not torn. You can lose almost a half a year by the time you straighten both ends.

Have a great day!!!

Deb

Millennium


A4D3F1A8FC6E09FA7B588F421C673A69.png

Debbie Cadwallender

APQS Sales-Service-Education

Central Michigan

517-304-6954

afinishedquilt@tds.net

www.die-ingtoquilt.com

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I always do all the measuring checks, but then I completely roll my quilt sandwich to the takeup roller to be sure I'll be ok and then roll back. This also helps straighten out any problems, like baggy backing that I created when first rolling onto rollers.

Terri


Terri Moses

Millenium

www.TerrisQuiltin.com

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I just finshed one that had extra wide muslin backing, apparently it had been measured, cut and then washed. It was a constant battle to keep it pulled out and clamped on the sides. Some piecers don't realize why we need the extra fabric on the backings. We have to let them know when they make our job harder (in a nice way of course). If you can show them a quilt on your machine with the right amount of backing they see the problem when they bring a too short or narrow back.

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Caron, I did that also, and caught it when I made the first wrap on the rollers.....but of course it was small stipple so it was like you said the "Law of 10's" grrrrrrrrrrrrrr

But I think my worst customer was the one that sent with me the 15 or so identical Christmas quilts....NOT ONE BACK was either square or LARGE enough....so I had to decide how to balance the quilts and which end was going to be short or which top edge was going to get the axe....and her answer was just do what you need to do...they are just gifts anyways. Man, what a lax answer and I sure wouldn't have wanted one. Unwashed unsquare flannel shrinks wonky and that is what these back were. ;)


Bonnie Botts

APQS Sales Rep - Certified Service Technician

APQS Millennium 2006---MJ

APQS Millennium 2004---Lucy

405-533-1025 home

518-935-3832 cell

"Absolute rules are about as useless in making quilts as they are in raising children" Carter Houck---1992

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Once I basted the bottom edge of a quilt top to the canvas. I knew that things were tight, but never thought that tight.

I hadn't thought, as mentioned above, to baste muslin onto a short backing in order to be able to load it. I think I was so....irritated....that I was having to work with a too small backing to really want to solve the problem. Just created more problems for myself.


Linda/9patch

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I always lay both layers on top of the machine just to make sure I have it right. Then I fold each layer and pin the center. But one day I was distracted and loaded the back layer sideways. When I got to the end I needed 5 more inches. I unpinned the quilt, cut off the extra fabric on the sides and sewed it on the short backing. Reloaded and finished the quilt. It was a lonestar and I felt so bad it had a seam in the back that I didn't charge her for anything. Well she didn't care and entered it in a show in Arizona where they winter and it won first place in it's category. She was thrilled and I was surprised.


APQS Freedom owner
pahasapa@enetis.net

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I too have made similar mistakes and have learned to check things twice before starting. On my last real big "problem" quilt, I left my studio to make lunch for my husband, forgetting and leaving the door open. Wouldn't you know my cat got in there and THREW UP on the quilt! Fortunately, it was just dry kibble! I called this "My Humility Quilt". The customer was ok with it and loved the quilt anyway.

Susie B.


Susie B\'s Quilting

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Susie's post helped me to know that I really do need to close the door to my studio so the kitty can't get on anything. That was a good reminder that you just never know what those smallest family members will want to do next!:o

Sorry Beth about all the extra work you had to go through. I'm looking forward to seeing you at Innovations. :D

And I liked the idea of having the customer putting a safety pin on the top edges of the top and bottom so that it really is their responsibility. Thanks for that tip!!:)


C9C76B5257D2C02397F9A72A2E02FC3D.png

APQS Millennium with Smooth M&M Wheels

Pat Noonan Design Studio, Custom Quilting

503-559-9686

pjnoonan@ymail.com

We never really grow up, we only learn how to act in public.

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I've had a couple really bad experiences. One lady from my quilt group ALWAYS brings backs that are too small or just squeaky close. I found that out one day when I was within inches of being done and realized her back was 6 inches too short. I called her - mentioned that we had talked about how big it had to be - I took the quilt off the machine - gave it to her - she added a piece on the backing and sent it back to be finished. She was delighted and I've measured her backs ever since - by the way many have been too short. The other tine I had about 1/2 of a batik quilt finished and looked underneath to find - horror of horrors that I had put the backing on upside down and there on the bottom of the quilt hung the seam allowances. The good news is that it was batik - I unloaded the quilt, ripped out the backing seam, and because it was batik and reversible, I resewed the seam with the allowance on the inside of the quilt. whew!!!

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Angie, What a sneeky fix...:P


Bonnie Botts

APQS Sales Rep - Certified Service Technician

APQS Millennium 2006---MJ

APQS Millennium 2004---Lucy

405-533-1025 home

518-935-3832 cell

"Absolute rules are about as useless in making quilts as they are in raising children" Carter Houck---1992

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I've had that happen, too -the first quilt my cousin and I put on the machine was well thought out -so we thought...whatever we did, we started about 6" lower than expect and forgot to add 6" to the bottom -luckily it was for her and it was a lesson well learned!

BUT...watch the Karen McTavish video -it's awesome work -and tiny -and compact -and all over -and...she said she wasn't happy with the thread color (I think that was it)...and pulled all her stitching out and started over! OMG!!!!!!!!!! I don't ever want to have to go there! lol:P

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Yippee. Yahoo now I can quit beating myself up, I'm not alone. What a wonderful feeling it was to read all of these posts. Even from the old timers that have been doing this for awhile.

The very first quilt I loaded to try my new pantographs that just came in the mail (now mind you, I paid a $1 for the top and it has old shirting material for the back that came from my Moms stuff), but still I thought this would be a great piece to make for a picnic or even just the back of the car. I got the whole thing quilted and I was short 4 inches. @$, the cats ran, the dog hid and I was upset with myself. A day later, after I calmed down, I realized I had all this fabric on the sides. Well a snip here and there and Voulau I was able to finish the last 4 inches.

The funniest thing about this whole story is that I kept this all to myself until I read these posts and since then I have spilled my guts to anyone who'll listen. My friend JoAnn was the first to hear that I was just like youz guyz and her. I am so glad we aren't perfect, if we were, we'd be dead. Laughter at ourselves is the very best medicine.:P


Jan Humphrey

Lenni player wither

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Here's my "measure once" story. . . I received a quilt top from a good, experienced quilter. It's huge--100" x 110"--just about the limit for my 12' table. Didn't measure it when she gave it to me. I went on vacation and didn't get to it for about 3 weeks. Went to load it and measured the center of the quilt but not the edges because I knew it would be flat. Guess what, started to quilt and the side borders were doing some serious waving. By the time I realized this was going to be a problem on the whole 110 inches of quilt, I already had a lot of thread in it. I called her, no answer. I called her the next day, no answer. This quilt is a wedding gift and the wedding is coming up. So I finally decided to proceed by putting tiny tucks in the borders and quilting over them.

The good news is that when we finally talked, she was fine with my solution. It actually looks quite "normal."

The other good news is that I remembered from one of these forums that steaming places with excess fabric helps to quilt them down. I tried that and it really works--no puckers!

Once again, our conversations save the day!

AlayneP

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