Wednesday, October 14, 2009

How do you baste your quilts?

I'm you spray or pin?

I've only ever sprayed. Never had much of a problem until this last quilt, the one for my mom. This is how I spray baste my quilts. I taped down the backing, sprayed from the top moving down with the batting rolled up and moved it down as I went. Smoothed it all out...perfect. Then did the top. Picked it up and checked the back and there were puckers, gathers and just a plain ol' hot mess! So then I tried the best I could to lift and smooth it out, really to no avail. I was so frustrated. The absolute worst part of quilting for me is the basting part. I think my problem with this last one was that I didn't use enough tape to really pull and stretch and lay out the backing. I quilted it anyway...yep I got some puckers. Not too noticeable after the quilt is washed and all. But of course, I could see them and it really bugged me. My mom probably won't even notice; but I'll tell you, if this was going to anyone else, I wouldn't have given it to them.

Now I'm considering pinning to baste my quilts. BUT I REALLY DON'T WANT TO! (said in a super whiny voice!) I like spray basting because then my quilt is all together, I usually get no puckers, I can start anywhere I want to on it to quilt it, and when I'm quilting...I can just go go go. I don't have to stop every few inches to remove pins. I don't have a large quilting surface so I'm super worried that I'll get even more puckers and gathers if I pin baste because when I'm quilting I don't have that nice big flat surface to smooth it out and move the quilt around.

Ahhhh... what to do, what to do?? Honestly, I don't think I could ever pin....guess I'll just have to master the spraying!


  1. I've done both...and hand basting...which worked best for me in the long run. Go figure. Sorry you had such a crappy time with this part of the process...can't wait to see the quilt though! You always do such an awesome job! Thanks for all your kinds words over at wonkyland...they're muchly appreciated.

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  3. I tried the basting spray and liked it - except for the smell.. whew. And on a smaller halloween project recently I actually found batting that was fusible. One of my local quilt stores had it. I really liked that. I don't know how big that comes though?.

    But for my larger projects - I've had the best luck with hand basting with large stitches.. you can stitch over them and they come out easy when you are done.

  4. I started out pinning, and HATED it! WAY too difficult to quilt with all those pins in the way! I then broke down and bought a can of spray baste, and LOVE LOVE it! When I spray baste, I don't tape down the backing. I actually lay out the BATTING first, spray well (or only spray half if its a bigger quilt) then lay out the backing on top of the batting. SMOOTHE the heck out of it! Then I flip it over again so the batting is showing again, spray, and add the top, smoothing a ton. I haven't had a problem yet with this method. Good luck to you!

  5. I pin baste and have never tried the basting spray. As long as you use the curved safety pins it's really not that difficult, and I always get a nice smooth top and back--with no puckers.

    I first lay the backing on the floor (right side facing the floor); then lay the batting on top; then lay the top on the batting; then I roll it up and bring it to my dining table and start pinning. It works fine to have the quilt hang over the edges just start pinning in the center of the quilt and work out. Pin every 3 to 4 inches or so.

    Sometimes it can be a pain to stop and remove pins, but I've also found that this allows me the opportunity to smooth out the top as I go which also helps prevent puckers and tucks in the fabric.

    I think basting is one of those procedures that people have their ways just like whether to prewash fabric. You do what works for you.

  6. I pinned my quilt and was happy with it. i layed it all out on the floor, layed along side of it with a good tv show to listen to and pinned away. it went faster than i thought. removing them was nothing because i was so excited to see the outcome! i think it just ends up being what works best for everyone else. your quilts are reallllyyyy cute!


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