oregoncarol

squaring a customers quilt.

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Hey Carol,

By "squaring" do you mean that you intend to cut your customers quilt???? :o

Or are you talking about pinning it to a flat surface to block the quilt?

Do you know this customer well?


Linda Card

APQS Chat Member since August 2005

Ramona Quilter Longarm Quilting Service (Retired Dec 2013)
Gammill Optimum Plus (sold to a friend Dec 2013)
Ramona, CA (Moved to Central Texas Sep 2014)

My webshots site: http://community.webshots.com/user/legcard (not active)
Blog site: http://ramona-quilter-big-dream.blogspot.com/ (not updated in months)

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

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the quilt top is not square when you fold the corners together

they come out uneven. am unsure if i should trim them up to

make it a square if it were mine i would not hesitate but she is one

of my first customers and and i do not want to make any mistakes

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YIKES! No, no, don't cut the top! :o

And, I've never heard of folding corners together and trimming a top like that... Is this something one does? My tops are square (the ones I piece together) because I'm careful to cut and sew accurately. Hmmm...

I would call the customer and tell her the issue/concern you have. If there is any cutting to be done to her top, she should cut it herself. I wouldn't touch it. She is paying you to quilt the top, not square it up for her.

I would be interested in hearing what others here have to say, and their advice to you.

Good luck.

Shana


"Of all the things a woman's hands have made---The quilt so lightly thrown across her bed---The quilt that keeps her loved ones warm---Is woven of her love and dreams and thread." excerpt from The Romance of the Patchwork Quilt by Carrie A. Hall
 

:rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes: 

Shana in North Pole, Alaska ---- The Farthest North APQS Sales Rep  
 Always quilting with her faithful friend, Mademoiselle Madeleine Millennium, Bliss-fully skating gracefully...and having lots of fun with IntelliQuilter

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that is exactly what i thought... i will give her a call

and take it back to her and show her the problem i am having with

it. it is not even and when i load it really ripples i thought maybe

i could manever the the quilt and quilt out the ripples but i just

don't know.

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Carol,

Sometimes you can "quilt out" small imperfections. But it

is just as easy to quilt in a pucker. Yikes. :(

Let your customer decide.


Linda Card

APQS Chat Member since August 2005

Ramona Quilter Longarm Quilting Service (Retired Dec 2013)
Gammill Optimum Plus (sold to a friend Dec 2013)
Ramona, CA (Moved to Central Texas Sep 2014)

My webshots site: http://community.webshots.com/user/legcard (not active)
Blog site: http://ramona-quilter-big-dream.blogspot.com/ (not updated in months)

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

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I square up backings all the time and charge them after the first time but never the top!! I try to square them as I quilt them--that can be a real challange, even more so for a nivice quilter. I've gotten better at that after lots of cockeyed quilts. ;) I love it when I get one that is square. jeri


JUST QUILTING

APQS SALES & SERVICE

Fil-Tec / Glide Distributor

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Since Jeri (above) mentioned squaring the back of a quilt... and I have a question about this.

This is how I "square up" the backs of my quilts before I send them along with my quilt top to the longarm quilter.. My question is, I don't know if I am doing this the right way or not (maybe I am weird???) but would you all tell me if I am doing this right or if I'm going over board?

The way I square up the backs of my quilts (not the tops), I usually rip the fabric very carefully along the grain and piece the panels of fabric together. That way I know it's square and straight at the top and the bottom (or close to it), and I do it for the sides, too. Hmmm...Is this the right way to do it, or is there an easier way to ensure my quilt backs are square? I've always done it that way, but I'm up for your thoughts and suggestions (you longarmers that know what you deal with regularly). Thanks for your advice and words of wisdom.

Shana


"Of all the things a woman's hands have made---The quilt so lightly thrown across her bed---The quilt that keeps her loved ones warm---Is woven of her love and dreams and thread." excerpt from The Romance of the Patchwork Quilt by Carrie A. Hall
 

:rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes: 

Shana in North Pole, Alaska ---- The Farthest North APQS Sales Rep  
 Always quilting with her faithful friend, Mademoiselle Madeleine Millennium, Bliss-fully skating gracefully...and having lots of fun with IntelliQuilter

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Yes, the best way is to have everything ripped. My new customers all get a short lesson on how to make a backing. If it is not square, you must hold two of the ends up in the air and let it drop and shift the sides back and forth until there are no wrinklies at the fold line (like you are squaring up fabric for a first cut across grain) Then lay it on a large cutting surface and trim the edge with a large ruler. I may use two rulers to make sure I am square with the fold. The do the same the other way. If they can't get it right after some instruction. I have them pay $10 for me to put the back together for them. (one seam- $5 each addl. seam) Many will gladly pay, since they think making a backing is soooo mysterious............

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On wide backings I also rip to get the grain line before I wash it. Then wash, press, and realign and rotary cut the edges so they are nice and even. I just hate to try to pin a backing on with all those loose threads from ripping.

jeri


JUST QUILTING

APQS SALES & SERVICE

Fil-Tec / Glide Distributor

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I've been getting alot of "bad" backs lately. The customer think that because they are cut at the store, that they are square.

I love the ones, too that just throw the length of fabric in the bag or on the hanger and run....

Cynthia


Can you quilt it out?

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Shana,

You are doing it just right ....but when you start doing your own customer quilts you will start to see that others aren't as careful and sometimes will send you really really off backs, and for this reason alone I too have a little lesson on how I want the backs or I tell the customer I want the backs to be 8 inches wider on each side than the usual 4 to 6".

Then I fold the backing in the center and rip it myself down each side before I start. I start out by clipping just an inch at the center point and rip from the center to each end to so see how far off it really is....some times it takes several times clipping and ripping this way before I can get a straight side....then go to the other side and do the same thing. With asking for the larger width, by the time you are done you are at the 4 to 6 inch mark that you really need.

There has only been one back that this didn't work for and it really wasn't the customers fault. It was a Jenny Beyers wide back and it was the manufactures poor print job that was so off.


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 never heard of this ripping method to square up a quilt back. Is it to insure that the background fabric in a directional print is aligned correctly? Or is it to insure that all the pieces you sew together for the back are sewn together with a uniform grain alignment, and if thats the case, is that to help avoid problems cropping up underneath while you quilt?

Kathy

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No, it doesn't matter about the directional print on the back its to make sure that the edges are completely square.

When you have a fresh piece of fabric cut from the store they don't always have a ruler set on the piece square so what looks square could be in fact 2-4 inches off. If you take that piece without ripping the end cuts and sew another piece that you in turn cut and were not square you now have added more to the 2-4 inches off.

Say you have a measurement of 75 inches width for your backing (the length doesn't effect this just the width). Rip the end cut and get that square. Then go down your piece to the 75 mark...clip it and rip it there...now the 2 pieces should be exact and also square so that you don't have to worry about your backing being off.

In my earlier post I was talking about where the backings are so off. It happens when someone take the stores word that the end cuts are correct and square...it looks sqaure, it lays sqaure so there for it must be square. WRONG....a lot of the times the store keepers don't always cut correctly they just want to cut the fabric to get to the next customer...and they could be as far off as 2-4 depending on how they layed their ruler. And with each row that your customer just sews without correcting the first end it just adds further inches to the equation. That's why I sometimes ask for more so I can clip and square up the back and not hurt anybodies feelings...they just think I need a larger back than most.

And to answer your last question...yes it does avoid problems while you quilt...a square back can't ripple if you have it pinned correctly, the tension rollers will make sure of that...you just need to keep checking that you have correct tension.


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 haven't tried squaring up a back yet, so forgive my ignorance in advance.

While the fabric will rip straight across the grain, doesn't it stretch the edges and make the fabric edge all wonky? I have torn fabric in the past while piecing and started using the rotary cutter instead for this very reason. Do you do anything special after ripping to avoid this issue?

Confused in Michigan.

Gail


Gail

APQS Millennium

http://community.webshots.com/user/QuiltFaerie

"If you can't be a good example, you'll just have to be a horrible warning -- Catherine Aird"

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Looks like I do not do the backs like anyone else. Not sure where I read this method that I use but I did see it written somewhere in the last year and it works for me.

First fold your back so the fold goes vertical. Like someone else described you need to ensure it is flat so you move it back and forth. Once you have established the verticle fold you bring the bottom up to the top and cut all 4 layers at one time aligning up you verticle fold on the cutting mat. I find this method very quick and it is accurate for me.................my quilts always load very nicely with this method.

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It seems I end up giving a little lesson on preparing quilts to go the quilter at every guild meeting and squaring up the back is the one most often repeated. You would think customers would understand what it means to square the backing on ALL 4 sides but they rarely do. So I end up doing that quite often in my studio.

But squaring up the TOP!?? I would never cut the top for a customer. I quilt the quilt in whatever shape it comes in. Some customers do actually think we can somehow quilt out all their piecing problems but it just isn't so. A recent small wallhanging went on my machine as though it had a twist in it's tights! But, oh well, that's the way she made it.

I've had more than one quilt back cut more like a parallelogram than a rectangle and those take more care when pinning on as well. Backs are often too small. I did have one customer ask me to cut her quilt top down to size to fit the back that was too small. Nope, I couldn't get myself to even do that. I sewed a jump strip onto the back and quilted the top as it was.

Good luck and remember to keep a good sense of humor about it all.

Eva Hathaway ~ CucumberQuilting


Welcome to the garden fresh studio of Cucumber Quilting! Located just east of Prineville, not far from the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.

QUILTS FOR SALE: CucumberQuilting.etsy.com

http://community.webshots.com/user/CucumberQuilting

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I have also had parrallelogram wide backs from customers. I had one customer take one back to the LQS because it was so off. The owner wasn't very nice--she said that she cut what the customer asked for!! I now recommend that my customers ask to have them tear the fabric instead of cutting it. When the clerk balked at that request, I reminded her that if you sell extra-wide fabric it will almost always be used to back a quilt and so it needs to be square. She seemed to have an "ah ha" moment and now is nicer about it. Or maybe she had too many complaints!!!

After fabric is torn, a session with the iron will ease out the little bit of waviness---or you can shave that little bit off with a rotary cutter.

Education is great--for us, our customers, and our suppliers.

Linda Rech

Olympia, Wa


Linda Rech

Finely Finished Quilts

Millennium on Bliss rails--hand-guided

http://www.topperquilttools.com

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Gail, like Linda said the iron takes care of the edges and it straightens right up...

Sewing....I love quilting...you can have 20 teachers in the same room and you come out with 20 new things that works for you....I had never heard of your way of squaring up so I have learned something new today...Thank you.

Eva.....ME Either....if it comes with lumps and tucks it will leave my studio with just as many as it came through the door with...I would never in a hundred years try to even square up a customers quilt...Be my luck they made it that way on purpose. ;) I also have had what you called a parallelogram backing...and I agree no amount of tugging will get that puppy into a close square so you just have to keep an eye on it. When the edges have that balloon effect on which ever side I stuff it with batting until it gets to the same tightness as the other one and when the bubble go down the pole I just follow it with batting stuffed up and under and keep an evil eye on the bugger.

Linda...the bolt of wide fabric that I had such a fit with was at the LQS it was one of Jenny Beyers fabrics and man it was wonky....not one piece came off that bolt square. The LQS shop after having me complain enough about it cut it up for practice sheets for their Grace Frame.


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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Talking about backs. I live in Missouri one of my New York customers sent me a backing that was all cockeyed. Once I straightened it the measurements were 4 inches less than the quilt in both directions! Anyways I e-mailed her with photos of how I squared up her quilt back and offered to put bleached muslin on the back (charged for of course) or she could send me a larger squared backing. She opted for the muslin and I sent her along with her finished quilt her newly squared too small backing and the the cut off pieces. In my quote for the backing price I included my $10.00 charge for squaring her previous backing.

I now take digital photos of what I have to do to customer quilts in order to load them on the machine and either e-mail them or print a plain paper copy for them to prove to them the work involved. I'ts helping as I'm showing them the procedures to actualy square up a backing or whatever I have to do. Most don't know what to do so the phots seem to help alot on the next quilt.


JUST QUILTING

APQS SALES & SERVICE

Fil-Tec / Glide Distributor

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Along those lines, I have found that when I ask the customer if she has squared the back, they always look me right in the eye and say yes. Yet when I check it, it is never square. (I only have one customer that always squares the back). I always have to square it up then send them the piece that I cut off. I have used my computer to "draw" a diagram and list instructions for squaring a quilt, but my printer went Kapoot so I can't print anything off to give to customers....if it's not one thing it's another!!


Mary Beth 

Powered by 2009 Freedom

Future winner of the Millie Sweepstakes

http://marysnutshell.blogspot.com/




 

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Since many of my customer quilts arrive and leave in the mail I usually do not have a back that does not need to be squared (in fact I can count on one hand then number that did arrive square). I always send back the strips that I cut off the top and bottom.....................that way they can see for themselves what I had to cut away to square their back. The way I square the backs only takes a few minutes so right now I do not charge for that service as I have to press everyting anyway..................then I just fold the back as I describe earlier and trim.........................this actually takes me less than 5 min and I just consider it part of the quilt preperation for the machine.

Someone else mentioned that people think we can quilt out all their piecing imprefections............................ain't that the truth. I am always amazed at what I have to do to get some things right. I had one where I was just doing an alover meander and the bottom border had so much waffle in it that I had to do a much smaller meander. I did get it flat though but it took a bit of work. I explained to the customer why that part was quilted smaller and she was just fine with it.....................................many people just do not know how to measure and cut borders on their quilts.

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Wow, how great would that be if we could educate them on getting their borders right.

I have asked the LQS to offer a class on putting borders on a quilt properly.....even if they offered a quick class during one of their sales, on a Saturday when there are a lot of people in the store....just as a quick tip....I'm afraid to give her too many ideas, she may ask me to teach it:o


Mary Beth 

Powered by 2009 Freedom

Future winner of the Millie Sweepstakes

http://marysnutshell.blogspot.com/




 

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Mary Beth,

I've taught these classes and its a great way to make a few bucks, but its a waste of breath. Most of the quilters I found have their own way of doing it and CAN'T even grasp that they might be doing it wrong or wonky....ya, know the customer is ALWAYS right. I shouldn't be so mean, there are a few that listen enough to fix the problem.


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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