Friday, April 29, 2011

Tutorial: Joining Batting Scraps to Use in a Quilt

I know other people have done something similar to this.  If you're like me, though, you can never get enough pictures or descriptions of new techniques!  I love seeing how different quilters do the same tasks because everyone does it a little differently.  Or maybe it just takes reading different descriptions before you finally decide to tackle something new.

One of the skills that I had been putting off trying was making good use of my large batting scraps.  I got tired of wasting so much batting and opening a new package every time I needed to baste a quilt.  I had long narrow pieces that would work, if I could only magically put them together!  I put off trying it because I was afraid of producing something with lumps or gaps that would be visible or obvious when feeling the quilt.

Finally I tried it and discovered that it wasn't as hard as I thought!  I took pics to share with you.

First, determine the size batting you need for your project.  Second, I would choose to create that size with the fewest scrap pieces as possible.  That means using your larger pieces first.  The super-small pieces aren't worth the trouble.  Save them for use in placemats, mug rugs (or as I like to call them, Quilt Dads), or pincushions.

Take your two large pieces and figure out how they need to be joined to reach the necessary size batt you need.  Batting has two different sides.  One is nubby and the other is smoother.  Make sure both scrap pieces have the same side facing up as you place them together on your machine.

This is a bulky job.  And, uh, by the way, don't wear black pants.  I'm just sayin'...

So now you've lined up your two scraps side-by-side (not overlapping at all) on the bed of your machine.  Start about 6-8" down from the top.  It's too hard to start at the top because the weight is pulling it wonky.

Set your machine for a zig-zag stitch and needle-down position if your machine has it.
I used a simple, clear presser foot so I could see what was happening.  As you feed the batting into the presser foot,  Make sure the edges are butting-up against each other but not overlapping.  Stop every once in a while or go slowly to make sure you don't start overlapping.

When you get to the end of your seam, clip your threads and go back to the beginning of your seam.  Turn the batting around so you can join those 6-8" to finish it off.  Now admire your handy-work:
Go ahead and chuck it in your quilt.  No one will ever know!

FYI - The quilt being basted in the pics is now finished and will be featured on Moda Bake Shop on May 8th.  If I can use this technique on a quilt that will be shown publicly, I know you can try it on yours  ;-)

Good luck and let me know how it goes!

PS - Don't forget about the Longarm Quilting discount I'm offering on quilts I receive by May 31st!  For more info click on the pig.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Edition

Saturday, April 23, 2011


I am thrilled to announce the opening of my new quilting business: Cotton Pig.  I create custom quilts, t-shirt quilts, and memory quilts along with providing longarm quilting services.  I have been working on opening the business since the first of the year but have had too many projects keeping me busy so far to announce it!

I quilt on a Handi-Quilter Avante machine with a 12' frame.  This means that I can accomodate any size quilt up to an over-sized king.  I have taken several hours of classes on my machine as well as quilted several quilts on it so far.  I wanted to make sure I could do a good job for my clients before offering my services.

In order to get started with a bang, I am offering basic meandering (stipple) or simple pantograph all-over patterns for just a penny a square inch.  That means a double-bed size quilt that is 80"x80" would equal ONLY $64.  This is a great chance to pull out those forgotten tops from your UFO stash and get them done once and for all.  This price is good for quilts sent to me by May 31, 2011.

I can also do custom quilting patterns, so just contact me to discuss what you have in mind.

I offer Warm & White batting for an extra charge.  I can also attach your binding to the front and back for an additional charge if you want your quilt completely finished when it arrives back home.

Please contact me for additional information.  For examples of my quilting, check out my Flickr stream.  I quilted the Quilt-Along Quilt on the longarm and used a few different quilting patterns on it.

If you are already happy with your longarm quilter, please stay with him or her.  I don't want to take away anyone's business out there.  If you have never tried a longarm quilter and are interested in sending a quilt to a longarm quilter to get it done quickly and affordably, I would love the opportunity to help you!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Stumped. And Three Finished Quilts.

I have just finally finished a huge project that has taken me a lot of long nights and ripped stitches.  More about that later.  In the meantime, I'm stumped about what to tackle next.  I'm on vacation all next week so part of me doesn't want to start something and leave it partially undone while I'm gone, trying to relax.

I have finished three project quilts this week!  Wooohoooo!  In case you're wondering why you haven't heard from me on Twitter, I've been either wrangling three kids on Spring Break, driving to and from tennis lessons, playing my own tennis matches, or binding and photographing quilts.

One finished project is my DQS10 (Doll Quilt Swap) quilt for my partner:

I used Aneela Hoey's Sherbet Pips fabric and Elizabeth Hartman's Kitchen Windows technique.  This is the third concept I tried but the only one that came together well.

The second project I finished is the Spring Quilt Along Quilt.  Come join us to see more! 

The third project I finished is an upcoming ModaBakeShop recipe.  Stay tuned for more info.

Finally, if any of you have recommendations for what to see/do/eat in Turks & Caicos, please let me know.  Hub and I are off on Monday for almost a week alone scuba diving, etc.  We've never been there before and would love advice, especially which dive shop to use.  Our ten year wedding anniversary was last September and we are finally able to celebrate it properly :-)  If you don't hear from me next week, you'll know what I'll be up to (and get your minds out of the gutter, there will be lots of BOOK READING AND NAPPING).


Monday, April 4, 2011

Want to Quilt-Along? (psst, there are prizes...)

Melanie at has asked me to guest-host a Spring Quilt-Along over on her blog.  This is the quilt we are making and it is A-DORABLE.  And super-duper easy.  We will begin our project on April 11.  That gives you one more week to gather your supplies.  Check here for details. 

Did I mention there are prizes?  Yes!  Melanie is giving away goodies for those of you who finish the quilt or even just finish the top!  This is a quick quilt, and I was able to cut and piece it in one evening.  I promise you can do the same.

Hope you can join us!