Like many of you, I come from a long line of women who worked with fiber with those traditions being passed down through time. (I think that is one of the things that I find so moving.) My grandmother, Edith, was an old fashioned quilter using scraps of fabric and flour sacks to make quilts. Her daughter, my mother, made clothes but was not a quilter. Her interests ran to needlework and knitting. On my father's side, I had a grandmother who was a tatter and did stunning cutwork and an uncle who owned a Swiss lace factory. Me loving fiber arts was predetermined!

I have always been drawn to the interplay of color and design especially those designs that fool the eye. The elemental layers of a quilt are something that I never tire of studying.

Color draws the eye.

Quilting draws the hand.

The smile that follows is proof that a soul has been touched.

Preparing Your Quilt for Quilting

You have spent hours choosing fabric and patterns, cutting material and sewing and pressing. There are a few simple things you can do to prepare your quilt for quilting to ensure that all your time and work are showcased.

• Backing should be at least 5” larger than the quilt to on all sides. For example, if your quilt is 60x60, your backing should be at least 70x70.

• Quilt top and backing should be pressed.

• Clip loose threads – even those on the back – they can show through the top especially on lighter fabrics.

• Quilt tops and backings should be flat and square. (Check your measurements on top, middle and bottom of the quilt both lengthwise and sideways.)

• Check all seams to make sure they are not loose or open. (Back tacking when adding borders will prevent seams from opening when the top is loaded.)

• If there is a directionality to your quilt, mark the top edge of the top and the backing. This ensures that designs are oriented correctly.

• Selvages may be left on the top and bottom of the backing but should be removed from any seaming done.

• If you are piecing the backing, use a ½” seam. If possible, have the seam run horizontally rather than vertically.

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