Little Fabric Shop Quilt: Finishing Steps
We have made it to the last Little Fabric Shop Quilt blog. Today, we’ll give you all the information you need to finish up your quilt! Thank you to everyone who has sent me pictures of how your quilts have turned out. I have enjoyed every single one of them and love them all! Let’s get sewing.
Iron the Quilt Top
Now that you have finished your quilt top it is important to do a thorough press. Make sure all the seams are lying flat and trim all the loose strings and threads from the back. This extra step really helps create a neat and clean finish as you go forward with the finishing steps.
Create the Quilt Backing
The two most popular options for quilt backing fabric size is to either piece together 44” wide quilting cotton fabric --or-- use a 108” wide back quilting cotton fabric.
44” Wide Quilting Cotton Fabric
The standard width that quilting cotton fabric is 44” wide. For the quilt backing you will need 6 yards of this fabric. To piece this fabric together you will cut the fabric into two 3-yard sections. Then, sew the selvage edges together (make sure you sew a little into the fabric design to make sure the seam does not include the selvage part) to create an overall size of 108” high x 88” wide backing fabric. Trim the backing fabric to an overall size of 104” high x 80” wide. Press open the seam. See diagram below:
108” Wide Back Quilting Cotton Fabric
Wide Back fabric is designed for quilt backs. It is a time saver and usually fabric designers will create larger prints that really stand out on a quilt back. This type of fabric is also sold in solid colors. For this quilt backing you will need 3 yards. You will not need to piece together this fabric, but you will need to trim it down to an overall size of 104” high x 80” wide.
This is a great option to have your quilt top quickly and professionally finished. A longarm quilter has a special machine and quilt rack system to create beautiful stitches. I am using longarm quilters almost all the time now. You can personalize your quilt in many ways by selecting the thread color, quilting design, and scale of your chosen design. As longarm quilters work with many different quilt designs and sizes they have a wealth of knowledge to help you find the best quilting options based on your quilt. I have used these four longarm quilters and they do excellent work. Check-out their Instagram links below:
Everyday Modern Quilts: @everyday.modern.quilts
Everyday Modern Quilts did the longarm quilting for this quilt.
Farm Fresh Stitches: @farmfreshstitches
Jenn B Quilts: @jennbquilts
Knot and Thread Design: @knotandthread
Baste & Quilt
If you want to complete your quilt on your own, we have lots of information and links to allow you to create a beautifully finished quilt.
Basting the Quilt
The most common types of batting are based on material. 100% Cotton, 80%/20% Cotton and Polyester Blend, and 100% Wool batting. I tend to use 100% Cotton Batting the most often. I like that my quilts are all sewn with the same material and are made from natural fibers. Make sure you read and follow all of the manufacturer’s care and use information.
This is an important step in preparing your quilt for quilting. You will be smoothing and holding together -or- basting the three layers of your quilt (quilt top, batting, and quilt back) together. The basting step will help prevent wrinkles and the shifting of fabrics during quilting. The two most common options for basting a quilt is Pin Basting and Spay Basting.
For this option, you will need lots – like a serious number of Number 3 Sized Safety Pins. Whole Circle Quilting has an excellent Pin Basting video tutorial. Check-out the link below:
Whole Circle Quilting: Pin Basting Tutorial
For this option, you will need Quilt Basting Spray. This option really gets the job done, but you will need a well-ventilated space or even go outdoors to complete this step. Cluck, Cluck Sew has a great Spray Basting tutorial. Check-out the link below:
Cluck, Cluck Sew: Quilt Basting Tutorial
Like with every step in creating a quilt, there are many options for quilting. The two most common quilting techniques are Straight Stitch Quilting and Free Motion Quilting.
Straight Stitch Quilting
If you decide to use the straight stitch quilting method, there are a few tools that you will need to make the process go smoothly. First, use a Walking Foot. Each sewing machine has a specific type of walking foot attachment so make sure you have the correct walking foot for your make and model of sewing machine. A walking foot allows the quilt layers to be pulled through the stitching process evenly and will reduce fabric shifting and thread breakage.
Quilting Gloves are a must. They are designed to help grip the heavy quilt while you are sewing. They are sold based on hand size. I personally like a snugger fit.
I love Quilting Wemple’s Straight Line Quilting Tutorial. Check-out the link below:
Quilting Wemple: Straight Line Quilting Tutorial
Free Motion Quilting is like drawing. You will be able to move your fabric freely through the stitches to create unique patterns. This type of quilting does take time to master, so definitely practice. Once you get the hang of it, it is a lot of fun! Check-out Cluck, Cluck Sew’s tutorial below:
Cluck, Cluck Sew: Free Motion Quilting Tutorial
Now that you have finished quilting, you will need to trim the extra backing fabric and batting. Just like when you square off a quilt block to make all the edges even, you will use a similar technique when you trim your quilt. Below, you will an excellent tutorial on how to square a quilt top by Hailey Stitches:
Hailey Stitches: How to Square a Quilt Top
Binding the Quilt
For this step, you will need 3/4 yard of fabric. Then you will need to cut it down into 2.5-inch segments for a total of nine 2.5” x width of fabric strips. Follow the Binding Quilt Tutorial by Pin Cut Sew for all the steps to finishing up your quilt.
Pin Cut Sew: The Easiest Quilt Binding Tutorial
Care of Quilt
Now that you have finished you quilt, enjoy it often! If you need to wash it, use cold water and tumble dry on low heat. It’s that easy!
Congratulations on finishing your Little Fabric Shop Quilt! This has been a wonderful journey to share with you. Please keep sending pictures and as always, we are here to help if you have any questions. Happy Sewing!