Your quilt top is finished. It's beautiful. And you want to get it quilted.


Sending your quilt for finishing to a longarm quilter can help give your quilt a beautiful, polished look.

At Patchwork Plus, Gail Auen is our longarm quilt specialist.


However, there are a few special things to consider before dropping off your quilt at the store.


Gail has put this list together so you can make sure you and your quilt are ready to be quilted.


Quilt Top Check List


1. Check to see if there are seams around the outer edges. If so, baste around the edges of your quilt 1/8 inch from edge to ensure the seams don’t pop open when loaded onto the longarm. The binding will eventually cover up these basting stitches.


2. Check to see if the borders are square and attached appropriately.


  • •Does your quilt top lie flat and even?
  • •Are the borders wavy?
  • •Are there any open seams or loose stitches?


If so, repair as necessary.


3. Remove all pet hair, soil, and odors such as smoke and mildew.


4.Make sure your quilt top is squared and even on all four sides.


5. Do the final press of the quilt top and fold neatly.


Choose Your Batting


Ask yourself how your quilt will be used.


Do you want the quilting to show or is a simple design preferable?


Batting choices can make a huge difference in the quilt drape and feel.


  • •Cotton/Poly blends are a good choice when you don’t know how the quilt will be laundered.

  • •Wool batting is also a great choice for showing off the quilting but cannot be dried in a commercial dryer.

  • •A double layer of cotton and wool can give extra prominence to the quilted areas.

  • •100% cotton will result in an old-fashioned look and feel when laundered.

  • •100% Polyester will be warmer than cotton and will shrink less than 100% cotton.


How to Prepare Your Backing for Longarm Quilting


You can either purchase wide backing fabric that measures up to 110 inches, or you can piece the back together. So, too, the backing can be as simple as an extra strip sewn to one side or pieced together with a few unused quilt blocks.


Once you have your backing decided:


1. The quilt back should measure approximately 8 inches wider in width and 8 to 10 inches longer in length than the quilt top.


2. If you're piecing the back together, stitch ½ inch seams and press them to one side.


3. Square up the backing on all four sides.


4. Press the backing and fold neatly.


Most importantly, be sure to communicate with your longarm quilter to see if she has any additional preferences for how you should prepare your backing.


Choose Your Quilting Design


This is the fun part!


To get some ideas of quilting designs, come into the store and view the shop samples to decide what you'd like. Or, you can search online for quilted examples. Also, you can come by the Patch and ask Gail if she has any suggestions.


Select High Quality Thready for Your Quilt


Good quality thread is a must for your quilt to last.


At Patchwork Plus, we primarily use Omni and King Tut threads because these threads wear extremely well and are color fast. When in doubt, ask Gail what she recommends for quilting.

Now that you know how to prepare your quilt for longarm quilting, we expect to see you and your quilt very soon.