If you have been following along with me, by now you have sewn all your blocks together in the pattern of your choice. Hopefully it all came together fairly easily for you and you are ready for this weeks instructions. Now, because lasts weeks instructions were a little involved, this weeks homework will be fairly easily.
The first step this week is to out four strips of Fabric B which were set aside when we started. You will need to sew one strip to each side of the quilt, adding the only border to the quilt. Press the top to smooth it out. Once you have that done, the top of your quilt is finished! You should be proud of yourself! You are half way to having a completed quilt ready for your own little one or to give as a gift.
Now, get out your backing material (Fabric D), and your batting. It is time to make your quilt sandwich. You are going to need a fairly large area to work. I will generally lay everything out on the floor at this point, however if you have enough space on your dining room table, I would recommend using that surface.
First, you'll need to press your backing material flat. Lay it out on the work surface. Then open up your batting, unroll and unfold it, smoothing it over the backing material. Use your hand to smooth it over the entire backing material; it will sort of adhere to the back material and not slip too much. Next, lay your quilt top over the batting and smooth it down with your hand as you did the batting.
Once you have it all smoothed and flattened, grab your safety pins and start pinning through all three layers. I prefer to use safety pins for this step because, even though they are a little more work to get on and off, I don't have to worry about stabbing myself on a straight pin while I'm working.
As you can see, I put one safety pin in the center of each fence rail block and along the border. You really need to use a lot of pins so that your materials don't shift and move around as you are quilting. Nothing is more frustrating than working so hard to quilt the layers together only to find out it shifted and won't lay flat once it is done.
After you it is pinned, trim the backing and batting to 1.5" - 2" larger than the quilt top, all the way around. Then, starting from one side, start rolling the quilt like cinnamon rolls. Go ahead and roll the entire quilt and set it aside until next week. As I said, this week is pretty simple. It is very important though, that you roll the quilt from this point on. If you fold the quilt in half, you risk shifting the material or allowing the batting to bunch or crinkle. This can cause problems when you are quilting with your machine.
So that's it for this week. Now you have a good idea of what your quilt look and feel like. You can feel the actual weight and texture of finished quilt. Next week we will do the actual quilting through all three layers of your quilt sandwich! Until then...
Happy Crafting All!!