June Tip of the Month

Basting, it’s not just for Turkeys! Wait, what? Basting? We’re basting turkeys? No, silly, quilts, we’re talking turkey about basting quilts! Let’s dive into it!

To baste quilts we need a large area and tons of safety pins, right? Well, maybe once upon a time, but now we have a lot of methods to use when we are layering our quilt sandwiches. We’ll cover a few here, but if you have a method not listed, please add a comment below and share your techniques!

The basic method from time immortal, or maybe you were around when this method was begun?, is to lay your backing right side down, layer the batting on top of the backing, and then the top is placed right side up on the pile to make a “sandwich”. Then you use safety pins or long basting stitches to secure the layers (rule of thumb is to place pins/basting stitches a hand’s width apart over the surface to prevent shifting of the layers as you quilt). Just where does all this layering take place? Most usually, the floor. Oh my aching back and knees! What if there were other options? Well, let’s take a look.

If you are cramped for space, or not able to get down on the floor, try this Table Top Roll Basting method show in a great video by Melanie Ham.

If you have a larger table area, use this method from Man Sewing to use your surface to pin baste.

OK, not sure you want to go those routes? What other methods of basting are out there? Just search “quilt basting” or “quilt sandwich” and you will find a wealth of options, methods, and ideas. The following are a few of the ideas.

Spray basting is an alternative to pin/sewn basting. It secures the quilt sandwich through a spray adhesive that is applied before layering.

Julie Cefalu has a great tutorial How to Spray Baste your Quilt which hits some pros and cons of using this method.

Homemade Emily Jane has a comparison of spray basting products along with some tips on spray basting.

Want to make your own basting spray? Check out this YouTube tutorial from String and Story.

But for those who like this method, but are still not sold on crawling around a floor or shifting a sandwich on a table, try Christa Quilts’ method of spray basting on……the wall!

Now, if you are still not convinced that any of these methods are the way to go, don’t despair, there is one last method that can utilized to baste a quilt, it just involves the participation of an outside source and some monetary exchange. Contact a long arm quilter to see if they offer a basting service. Some area options are:

Longarm Louise
Mudsock Quilters, please check with them for information on basting services

I hope you have discovered a new way of basting your quilts for future projects. And if there is a method you use that I have covered here, please share your ideas in the comment section.

Happy Basting!

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