When I chose this flag fabric, I knew it wouldn’t look right horizontal, so I ordered enough to allow for a vertical seam that would run the entire length of the quilt (doing it this way usually means you have to buy a bit more fabric). If you plan to hand quilt or to quilt with a home sewing machine, the backing should be at least 4″ larger than the quilt top on all sides. And if you are really adventurous, add another in the opposite dimension (i.e., so that one strip is horizontal and the other is vertical). The extra fabric allows for any slight shifting or “shrinkage” that might occur during quilting. Also put a pin at the end of your quilt in the center of the horizontal and vertical fold. NOTE: When stretchy fabrics are used for the back of a quilt, the selvage edge of the fabric must be mounted perpendicular to the rollers so that the stretchy properties of the fabric cause the least amount of problems. NOTE: I flipped back the top piece to make sure it would line up before cutting and sewing. Use horizontal seams for 40" to 60" quilts Use vertical seams for quilts 61" or larger 61" to 80" 61" to 80" 81" to 120" 3: 7. If you know you must include a seam, choose another fabric color and/or pattern to add a strip between the two pieces. Posts about Pieced Quilt Backing written by Christa. It is definitely better to load a quilt with the backing seams horizontal on the longarm, if that is possible. First, you’ll have to decide whether you’re going to run your seam horizontal or vertical, which usually depends on the fabric print. The very first large quilt I made and quilted (on a tiny little Janome) I had had to piece the backing and didn’t check it for alignment until I had half the quilting done – it was off about 10 degrees and to me it looked horrific. You can also make a horizontal seam on the back. Learn the simple quilt math to perfectly match large prints and make your wholecloth quilt look "seamless!" Measure the width plus 8” and purchase two times this number. I don’t have a photo of it, but both WOF pieces are now cut with a ½” seam allowance and are pinned right sides together all the way down. I ... it is difficult to center a horizontal pattern on a long arm, so if possible plan on a vertical pattern … I'm the worst because I like to piece my label in the middle of the backing so it is quilted into the quilt so I ALWAYS have vertical seams. Quilt backing is the bottom layer of the quilt sandwich, a three-layer packet made up of the quilt top, batting, and backing.The backing is the layer we see when we flip a quilt over to take a peek at its reverse side. Lastly, I sewed the length of the fabric, pressed the seam open and ended up with a nice match up! Things are going good. Because this quilt is quite large and I’d rather not quilt it on my domestic machine, I’m having it quilted by my longarmer—which I don’t do often and I’m pretty excited about! Determine how the quilt top will be oriented. Pressing quilt seams is a crucial step of any quilt-making process ... always exceptions to every rule. Then I matched the pattern along the top by laying out my right-hand WOF piece and placing the left-hand WOF piece on top (right sides together). 7. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Then, I cut the bottom piece edge the same as the top piece edge (for a ½” seam allowance). If your quilt will not hang, then consider putting the backing seam horizontally rather than vertically—especially if you are quilting the project on a longarm frame. So, from the end of the starred flag section in the pattern, I cut away ½” for the seam allowance on the right edge of the left-hand width of fabric (WOF) piece. I started off with some basic measurements. Does your top have straight strips or borders. Does the top require backing larger than a single width of fabric? We quilters probably can agree that one of the easiest steps in quilting is piecing the back. In many cases you can load the top sideways to avoid that vertical seam. Don’t hesitate to cut a length of fabric in half along the fold line if it means saving fabric and makes the quilt easier to handle. In my case, I need a backing at least 86” but only have usable yardage 41” wide after trimming selvedges. Using channel locks lets us quilt perfect straight lines. ( Log Out /  Backing - Vertical Seam(s) * We substituted precut ombré strips in place of Fabric 1 in the pattern Remember, you can choose any of your favorite fabrics in these sizes to make this beautiful quilt. This allows the seam to lay parallel to the fabric rollers for easier loading and smoother backs. NOTE: To center a seam, it must be placed perpendicular to the rollers when mounted on the machine. (See. I’ll definitely post more photos of this Stars & Four Patches quilt once it’s finished! Backing Fabric - Horizontal Seam(s) or 5 yds. When in … When I chose this flag fabric, I knew it wouldn’t look right horizontal, so I ordered enough to allow for a vertical seam that would run the entire length of the quilt (doing it this way usually means you have to buy a bit more fabric). Then use the pins as guides to line up your center point of the quilt top and backing, the vertical and horizontal center points. NOTE: To center a seam, it must be placed perpendicular to the rollers when mounted on the machine. 6. It doesn't necessarily require more fabric, only that you be more creative when you're piecing the back or when you're loading the top. For example, I always press my border seams open, as well as my binding seams and my backing when I load it on my long arm. Start quilting in or near the middle, where you hopefully have a nice seam running down the quilt to help you sew in a straight line. The important thing to remember about the backing is that it is always the biggest part of the sandwich. When I chose this flag fabric, I knew it wouldn’t look right horizontal, so I ordered enough to allow for a vertical seam that would run the entire length of the quilt (doing it this way usually means you have to buy a bit more fabric). Only Vertical seams can be centered. Overall, it’s not imperative that you do match it, but it does look neater and seamless without taking too much additional time. To avoid piecing quilt backing all together, look for quilting fabric that is 108″ wide and buy enough continuous yardage to cover your quilt back. 3. Apr 20, 2014 - Simple enough. 88" ÷ 42" = 2.1, or 3 lengths of 102" 3 lengths x 102" = 306" If your quilt is more than 40 inches wide, you’re either going to have to buy a wide backing fabric or you’re going to have to seam your standard fabric to create the necessary width. It is best if you make long seams go horizontal or if I can load the quilt sideways you can seam it vertical. Change ). After one vertical row of stabilizing stitches I check my alignment. Next, with my left-hand WOF piece still in place, I lined up the starred ends of the flags and pinned. 4683 E. Hillcrest Drive, Berrien Springs, Michigan, 49103. Any idea what would happen if I seam two lengths of my yardage, then do a diagonal slice and seam, as if they were one piece of fabric? by Gloria ... Good question! Here’s how I did my last backing along with the great results I got with just a little extra effort. The seams used to piece quilt backing can run vertical or horizontal depending on the size and shape of your project. So, this quilt had 2 reasons to do the quilting sideways! If seams are necessary, you need to decide whether your want them to be horizontal or vertical on the back of the quilt. Most quilters press seams open when making the backing for a quilt. Quilt backing is the fabric used on the back of a quilt. Pieced backing for quilt. Win-win! Most people just seam together two or three pieces of fabric that are identical in length and width, line up those seams so that they’re right smack in the middle of the back, load the fabric on the machine and start quilting. This is one of my 'cheats' that helps me not have to mark a straight line down the center to get started. A simple way to hide a seam is by making it intentional. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. Note: large quilts might require 3 lengths. The seams used to piece quilt backing can run vertical or horizontal depending on the size and shape of your project. Yes, this is the worst quilting task ever, but it makes it looks so nice with no unsightly threads to be seen! Patriotic Flag Mini Quilt – Monday Morning Designs. Everything should be relatively lined up then. Choose a backing layout that best suits your quilt. As a general rule I prefer to have a larger seam allowance and press my backing seam open. You want to quilt lots of vertical straight lines. If the backing were pieced with the seam running vertical there would be a “build up” in the middle of the roller which makes it harder to control puckers. Use horizontal seams for smaller quilts (under 60″ wide) and vertical seams for larger quilts. Backing and batting must be at least 6" wider and longer than your quilt top. Use vertical seams for quilts that hang Traditionally, backing is pieced with seams that run vertically (top to bottom). Calculate the size needed for the quilt back. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Is your pattern directional or non-directional? When I am loading my quilts or a customer's quilt, I always check the backing for the direction of the seams. Without thinking (and I do know better!) If desired, a 1/2″ seam allowance can be used on quilt backing to make the seam more durable. I can’t see why it wouldn’t work but hate to experiment on a customer quilt and $50 worth if fabric! (You decide how wide you want it.) I usually wait until the top is finished, making it feel so simple and quick! First, you’ll have to decide whether you’re going to run your seam horizontal or vertical, which usually depends on the fabric print. Single width of fabric for the center section with remainder evenly spaced on either side. If possible, plan your strategy to avoid having a seam along the vertical or horizontal center of the quilt. These are Vertical seams. *The viewable surface when quilt is completed is the right or outside of the back. If your quilt is 40 to 60" wide, horizontal seams save on yardage. In the same way, sew across the horizontal seams of the quilt, starting in the center of the “quilt” and backtracking and over-stitching as necessary where the squares and rectangles do not align straight across. Only Vertical seams can be centered. These are Vertical seams. Which way should the seam run? Typically, to make the most of your fabric you want to use horizontal seams for 40″-60″ quilts (pictured above) and vertical seams for quilts that are 61″ or larger (pictured below). Once you’ve finished a your beautiful top and are ready to start putting […] See Figure 5. Put machine on lock and it would be easy (provided the customers quilt is square! Repeat all the same steps with your backing. A vertical seam in the back and a design that looked better sideways. So I cut a piece of fabric 70″ long x WOF. Horizontal and vertical lines 1/4" either side of the seam. Gently roll or fold the right side of the quilt to help it move through the machine. Hello, I’m Deb Gehringer, quilter, pattern designer and fabric enthusiast. ( Log Out /  On the Christmas quilt above, the holly looked better if it was quilted sideways. And of course, before taking any quilt top to get quilted or quilting it yourself, remember to always cut off all the threads on the quilt top back. Make a sketch of how you plan to piece the backing. Press the seam open to help it lay flat. There are times, though, when you have your heart set on a patterned fabric where matching the print along the seam (or not) can make a difference. First, I determined that I needed a quilt back to end up being about 70″ x 86″. If your quilt top is wider or longer than the width or length of your backing fabric, you will need to piece the backing. Quilt tops are flatter when seams are pressed open; that problem becomes more of an issue when using heavier fabrics such as flannel or denim. Use ½ inch seam allowances for thicker fabrics. ( Log Out /  Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. If you are piecing your backing, horizontal seams are better than vertical seams, because of how the quilt is loaded on the rollers. NOTE: Remember to always include a few extra inches all the way around to allow for shifting when quilting. I side press because I want a strong seam, especially for baby quilts that will be subjected to frequent washings. Quilting, especially hand quilting, is easier when seam allowances are not doubled up. I then folded this rectangle along the diagonal. 4 yds. I try to align the vertical seam of pieced backing with a vertical seam on the top. Your seams must be at least 1/4 inch (if you are using left over blocks) and I often use 1/2 inch when seaming yardage. Because this fabric has relatively small flags that repeat in closely set rows, I barely had any waste as I matched them as close to the top as possible. Since my finished quilt size is approximately 64″ x 80″, I needed my backing to measure at least 4 inches larger on each side so that there would be “wiggle room” around the entire perimeter. Calculate the number of lengths to cut by dividing the minimum required backing width by the UWOF of each backing panel or strip. It’s the bottom layer of the quilt sandwich: top, batting, backing. Use ¼ inch seam allowances for 100% cotton quilt fabric. Since I was going with a vertical seam, I determined that lining up the end of the starred section of the flags would make the seam look less conspicuous and be fairly easy. This means if the length of your top, plus the 4” top and bottom, adds up to less than 90" (45”x2)then you could use two widths of fabric. Off-set this seam to one side, or better yet, piece the backing so that you have extra on both sides and a larger piece in the center. If your quilt top is 80″ x 80″, for example, the backing should measure 88″ x 88″. ). When I am pattern matching I make an exception to my usual process, but if you are intent on pressing your seams open you could do so by gently washing the fabric at this point to remove the glue before proceeding. Stitch the outer horizontal edges to the backing 1/4″ from the cut edges. So far we have rolled the entire backing onto the payout roller (front roller or belly bar) and our quilting techniques are paying off. I put pins along this diagonal to keep it in place, and pressed it with steam. It's easy to make quilt backing, and the backing layer can be created from either regular quilting cotton or wide panels of fabric made especially for the task. Plan on 40” to 42” of usable fabric width when estimating how much fabric to purchase. 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