Saturday, 12 May 2018

How to Piece Batting (so it lays flat)

Joining two pieces of batting to make useable yardage can be done quickly and easily. You will need a flat surface to work on, cutting tools, a roll of painter's tape, and a sewing machine with a zigzag or serpentine stitch.

First, lay the two pieces you wish to join right sides up on a flat surface overlapping the edges to be joined by two or three inches. 

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Ensure that the pieces to be joined are laying flat. 
Position a cutting mat under the "overlap" in preparation for the next step.

Next, place a quilting ruler so it is centered on the overlap. Use your rotary cutter and slice right up the middle.

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Lift the sliver of batting to be discarded out of the way and use painter's tape to keep the newly cut edges butted together exactly as they were cut.

Ignore what is happening underneath at this point. Just cut and tape. 

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Place tape every four or five inches. The goal is to keep the batting pieces from shifting as they're sewn together.

Since my arms aren't ten feet long, I gently pull the entire thing toward me as I go. It is fine hanging off the table edge after it's taped. Be sure everything slides evenly so the pieces stay aligned and flat.

After cutting the entire length of the overlap and taping everything securely, carefully lift the batting and take it to the sewing machine. The sliver of batting left underneath can now be discarded. 

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Sew the pieces together using a serpentine stitch or a large, loose zigzag. Align the center of the foot with the cut edges held together by the tape.

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Do not allow the edges to overlap. Also do not allow the edges to separate and leave a gap. Do not sew over the tape. (Sew up to it and remove.)
Ensure that both pieces feed evenly through the machine.
Handle gently to prevent stretching.

Result? An invisible join, save for the stitching! No bulk. No ripples. Just useable yardage!

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Quilting for others means I get to enjoy a spectacular range of quilt-y delights. Here's a quick show of the latest batch of client quilts Fresh off the Frame

 
One Block Wonder (client quilt)
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Client quilt
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Client quilt
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Client quilt
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Humboldt Strong donation #1 (pieced by local ladies)
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Humboldt Strong donation #2 (pieced by local ladies)
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Client quilt
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Client quilt
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The next one came to me already stitched-in-the-ditch and bound.

Its maker hoped I could stitch a pretty pantograph over the whole thing. Since the layers were already stitched together I couldn't promise perfection, but I was game to load it up. 

I'm happy to report that my client was delighted with the result - and I'm sure her granddaughter will love this sweet treasure forever!

Client quilt, already "ditched" and bound when it arrived...challenge accepted!
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And finally, a teaser!

Client quilt
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This gorgeous quilt needs a post of its own, so it shall have one! (Just not tonight)


Our Guild Retreat also came and went since my last post.

I decided to work on the Gypsy Wife quilt that's been on my radar for a year. Yup. Made a total of 8 blocks, I think. Do you think maybe I socialized a bit too much? 

Small projects were part of the program. I came home with a new mug rug made from random bits supplied as a challenge-in-a-bag (I added the green - totally allowed!) . . . 

Mug Rug challenge
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. . . and a collage to finish - some day.

I enjoyed the process of cutting, shaping, re-shaping, arranging and rearranging my flowers, but I think I need scissors with a soft gel handle for the next one. I actually wore a hole in my skin from all the cutting!

Collage challenge
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All of these collages were made from exactly the same kits.


Collages with character!
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Isn't it amazing how they are all so different!


Try, Learn, & Grow!
Carole

4 comments:

  1. Love the collages, how many different fabrics were used?

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  2. Great tip for joining the batting; I hope you consider linking up to the Tips and Tutorials Festival when it opens on June 11th! You get to see such a fun variety of quilts and touch so many people's lives with your quilting. :)

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  3. Thanks for the batting tutorial. This is how I do it, too, but I struggle with feeding it even thru my machine. At least I know I'm on the right track and just need a bit more practice :)

    I always enjoy seeing all your clients' quilts and this post was no exception!

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