Preparing your quilt for a longarm quilter

October 31, 2023

Quilting is like magic; you take pieces of fabric and transform them into a cozy masterpiece. Have you wanted to give your quilt just a bit more shine and polish? Hiring a longarm quilter to give your quilt a bit more polish is like booking a glamour shots party for yourself or taking the time to create an extra special icing for a special cake.

To make sure the quilting process is smooth and beautiful, here is a fun guide on how to prepare your quilt for a longarm quilting extravaganza.

Preparing your quilt for a longarm quilter - preparing and measuring fabrics for your quiltStep 1: The fabulous flattening act

Your quilt top needs to be flat and fabulous. Imagine it is going to a glamorous party, and it wants to look its best. Give it a good press to get rid of any pesky wrinkles or creases.  Then, trim those edges to make sure they’re sharp.

Step 2: Inspect with a critical eye

Before you move on, carefully inspect your quilt top. Check for any gaps in seams, loose threads or any blemishes on the back of the top that might show through the fabric. You want your quilt to look flawless on both sides.

Step 3: Backing – the bigger, the better!

Your quilt backing is like the stage for a superstar performance. Choose a backing fabric that is 6 – 8 inches larger than your quilt top on all sides. You spent a lot of time and effort getting to this point, and your quilt needs space to shine.

Step 4: Batting is the ‘invisible hero’

The batting is the unsung hero of your quilt. Cut it to the same size as your backing fabric and quilt top. Think of it as a superhero’s cape – it needs to be smooth and wrinkle-free.

Step 5: No need to baste the pieces together

One of the fantastic aspects of using a longarm is that you do not need to baste the layers together. The beauty of longarm quilting is that you load the layers separately, saving you time and hassle. Isn’t that a quilting dream come true?

Step 6: Thread talk and design dreams

Your quilt is almost ready to hit the stage, but it needs the right outfit! Talk to your longarm quilter about thread color, quilting patterns, and any special requests. They are like the fashion designer for your quilt’s red-carpet look.

Step 7: Explore additional services

Don’t forget the essentials. If you’re supplying your own backing fabric, make sure the backing fabric is ready, too. The backing should be the right size to complement your quilt. This sets the stage for a smooth quilting process.

While you and your longarm professional are discussing these details, take the opportunity to explore any additional services your longarm quilter may offer, such as binding. They might be able to take care of more aspects of your quilt project, making the process even smoother. It’s like getting a full VIP package for your quilt adventure.

Step 8: Date night with the longarm quilter

Now it’s time to make an appointment with your longarm quilter – they’re the directors of this show. Discuss your vision and make sure they have all the backstage passes to make your quilt shine.

Preparing your quilt for a longarm quilter - quilt loaded on longarm quilting machineStep 9: Embrace the waiting game

Your longarm quilter will give you an estimated completion date for your quilt. They’ll be in touch as soon as your quilt is red-carpet ready, just like a star’s grand entrance. It’s perfectly fine to check in on progress; your quilter understands your excitement to see the results. However, remember not to be too persistent – think of it as eagerly awaiting your favorite band to take the stage. You should savor the anticipation and enjoy the quilting concert!

Step 10: The grand finale

Once the longarm quilting is done, it’s time for the curtain call. Pick up your quilt and add the finishing touches, like the binding – the final bow to wrap up this incredible show.

With these steps, your quilt will be ready for its spectacular longarm makeover. Imagine it stepping out with confidence as if it just walked the red carpet at the Oscars.

Longarm quilting can take your quilt from ordinary to extraordinary, and the result will be a masterpiece that dazzles. Enjoy your quilting adventure.