Measuring the quilt top

day2dayMarch 3, 2011

Before I add borders, I measure the quilt through the center to find out how long the borders should be. I always measure with my 8"X 24" ruler. My friend says that she measures with a plastic,flexible tape measure. I was wondering how others do this.

~Geraldine

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finchelover

I'm like you I measure with my long ruler. I was told at one time not to use those tapes because they tend to stretch and then your block or quilt would be off

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 9:34AM
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lindaoh_gw

I have a 120 inch retractable tape measure that I use to measure borders. I haven't had any problems with it being off. I do try to not stretch the measure or the quilt.
Linda OH

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 9:52AM
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K8Orlando

I use a 120 inch tape measure too. It's metal, like most of them are, and not likely to distort enough to throw off the measurement of the quilt.

Kate

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 11:43AM
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calliope

I use the same industrial metal tape I use when I am plastering walls or doing other home renovations. LOL.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 11:57AM
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chickie1

Never thought to use a metal tape. Thanks!
Darlene

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 12:06PM
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toolgranny

I have a 12 ft metal tape in tools that I use all the time. I actually have several scattered around. They sometimes go to the store with me as well.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 12:16PM
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magothyrivergirl

I also use a metal tape measure. I also use the same tape measure to measure and cut the border. This is what I learned to do when you need precise measurements in cutting wood. I do take 3 measurements along a seamline, not on the edge.
I dislike the border process-I don't know why-mine have always turned out fine in my short quilt making life.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 12:46PM
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lockeb

I used my measuring tape to measure my quilt for making my borders...
But, I measure from corner to corner at both ends, then from edge to edge though the center..and take the average of the 3 to cut the 2 borders......
I follow this for both the vertical and the horizontal borders.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 7:17PM
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faintheart

I used to use my longest ruler but recently got a 120" tape and now use that. It's not metal but I don't worry about stretching as I don't put a lot of tension on it when measuring.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 7:28PM
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karpet

I measure both edges on my cutting mat and use the average of the two.
Karlene

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 7:29PM
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grammyp

I also use a 120 inch tape measure. I measure about 6 inches from each end and across the middle of the quilt.

beverly

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 11:30PM
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agnesd

i use the fabric itself. I spread it across the middle and cut. Works perfectly never have a proplem with it.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 12:09AM
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geezerfolks_SharonG_FL

Like Agnes, I don't use a ruler. Spread out the top (usually on my big ironing board), lay the border across the middle, cut and sew it on!

SharonG/FL

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 10:33AM
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lafonda_ranch

I have a few wooden yard sticks that I lay on top. I like the metal tape, but they keep hiding at my house.

Robbi

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 11:54AM
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rosajoe_gw

Sharon and Agnes I can do that for baby or lap quilt but not for anything larger. I have seen quilting shows were they use the same method.
I did that for a full size quilt and I had to take the border off and redo it. I must not lay the fabric on the top straight.
I use a metal tape for larger quilts. Large quilts are not my fav to do, I run into too many probs.
Rosa

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 12:24PM
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geezerfolks_SharonG_FL

Rosa, I've done it on larger quilts, too. Half at a time and pin the border to the top so it doesn't move. You won't catch me on the floor any more than is absolutely necessary. @:)

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 12:33PM
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magothyrivergirl

So, am I obsessing too much about being precise & making sure the borders are exactly the correct length?? I also pin halves & quarters. Maybe that's why I do not like putting on borders....and yes, I am on the floor alot - and I don't have a big floor area, so I have to move some furniture.

Robbi-scratch (engrave) your name on your own metal tape measure & like your scissors, threaten your family if they touch it!!

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 12:42PM
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mary_c_gw

NO Marsha, you're not obsessing to much!

I'm lucky in that I have a really huge cutting table to use, so I'm not on the floor.

I square my blocks before joining them, and I count up the block measurements. 4 blocks @ 12"finished size should equal 48.5" - I cut that border to that measurement. I mark the center and quarter marks and MAKE that quilt fit. If there is more than a bit of ease, well, then, I've screwed it up someplace.

But this makes for a flat, square quilt.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 4:39PM
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day2day

Thanks for all the replies.
I am going to get a retractable tape measure. DH has one but I'd like to have one to keep in the sewing area.

~Geraldine

    Bookmark   March 5, 2011 at 6:21AM
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