LOOKING for creative, fast, easy way to fasten quilts

krissie55September 23, 2012

Looking for a creative, fast, easy way to fasten charity quilts together. Something new!

I know, I know, I am asking for the "moon", but it would be nice to find a creative way other than hand, machine, or tying.

Most quilts are scrappy or semi-scrappy. Some have a large center fabric with a couple of borders around them. (Tops I make are made with scrappy quilt blocks, about 120 tops per year).

For years our quilt group has tied quilts with crochet thread. I am tired of strings all over the quilts. Hand quilting is too slow, machine quilting using regular sewing machine is too bulky. Quilt as you go is not the answer.

I know this group is very creative, just maybe someone has a bright idea stored away that needs to be let loose!!

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Using a decorative tack stitch on your machine may be the answer. Tack at intervals - middle of block - corners, whatever you decide.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2012 at 7:47PM
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"...machine quilting using regular sewing machine is too bulky..."
I don't think machine quilting needs to be bulky and it is fast, but if you don't want to do that then tacking seems like a great choice.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2012 at 8:15PM
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We have a number of shops in the area, that after taking an introduction to longarm on their machine, you can rent the machine for the day. If a group of guildmembers got together you could get a few done in a day especially if you load a wide backing in a length long enough to quilt a number of tops. When you have quilted the first top you simply lay the next top down and baste the edge to the batting and backing then continue quilting. A friend of mine has the same deal with her longarm and charges $40 for the day. Using the above method I can quilt 4 lapquilts in a day. Hope this helps.


    Bookmark   September 23, 2012 at 9:24PM
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If you don't want to tie, you don't want to machine or hand quilt, well, what else is there? We're creative, LOL, but we're not miracle workers!

Machine tack. Every 4 inches or so will work just as well as the tying would. Use either with a small individual decorative stitch, or if your machine doesn't have those, a simple bar-tack will work.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2012 at 9:41PM
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I'm a HUGE fan of machine tacking, I've used that method at least 3 times. I pick a decorative stitch and make sure that I push the stop button before the stitch is done so that it doesn't continue on. The only thing I regret when I do this is that my machine doesn't have the thread cutting feature, it would go much faster if it did. Other than this I can't think of another method unless you used some kind of buttons or fasteners.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 5:32AM
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Knowing how creative you ladies are, I thought there was by chance something I did not know about or something someone had thought of to create the "miracle" I am looking for.

Only one lady in the group has a long arm sewing machine and my experience using the short arm sewing machines for machine quilting proved to be too bulky.

Do you have suggestions on how to use the short arm machine and not have too much bulk to try and maneuver?

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 3:17PM
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The short arm (aka standard) sewing machine is quite capable of doing even king sized quilts rather easily, if you plan your quilting pattern.

I would recommend straight line stitching, grid work (either straight or diamond grids), and you can even use decorative stitches with this plan!

Simply work from the center line out to one edge, turn the quilt 180 degrees and work from the center out again. With this method, your first line will be the toughest with the most quilt in the machine, then it will get progressively easier as you work to the outside lines.

If you wish to stitch along the edges of your blocks, don't think about turning around the corner (rotating the quilt). Think of a quilt that is 3 blocks by 3 blocks. The first column of blocks is 3; sew down the right side of block one, back stitch or lock stitch; pick up your presser foot, jump the sashing (presuming you have one), and do the next block the same way. Eventually, you'll get all four sides of all the blocks done, and without turning the quilt.

Sometimes you just need to think outside the box! I've done many, many large quilts on my standard machine.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 4:10PM
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I haven't done a king size on my little Elna but I've done a few queen size quilts. It takes some rolling and stuffing to get the center done, but after that it's easy. And if you are doing charity quilts I'm thinking they are probably more like sofa sized or twin bed size? Even if you are doing free motion on a quilt that size, use a fairly large meander and you'll be done in no time. Again, start in the middle and work to one edge. Be sure to have the whole quilt well supported so it's easier to move around.

Good luck and let us know what you decide to do!

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 6:28PM
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Thanks for the idea about tacking. I hadn't thought of that. I needed to add a bit more quilting to one of the charity quilts and that would be perfect!

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 8:04AM
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Could someone post a pic of a finished quilt that is just tacked? I'd like to see the appearance of the finished quilt. (I get the concept, just need the visual for my brain to process :-).


    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 3:18PM
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Here is a quilt I made for an uncle. I used a single decorative stitch in the middle of each block and at the corners of each block. I will post a photo of a closeup of one I did on another quilt.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 5:17PM
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Here is a closeup of a single decorative stitch used to tack a quilt.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 5:19PM
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Uh oh, I guess you still can't post more than one photo per post, I'll make a new post to show you. Sorry.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 5:20PM
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thanks for all the pics ... visuals help!

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 7:48PM
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