I basted my Sis Boom quilt today, and thought I would blog my process for it. I have a sewing room that also functions as my computer room and bedroom. Tight quarters, but no floor space anywhere else in the house, either. I found this method back when I first found blogs, and I have no clue whose blog I saw it on, but I am eternally grateful. This is how I do it.
I have three tables in my room. One is for my sewing machine, this one is for ironing [notice the custom ironing pad - a vintage tablecloth usually covers it as it isn't the prettiest!]...
and this one is for cutting. My cutting mat fits it perfectly with a little leftover on the ends for tools.
The table measures 26" x 48". It's also my basting table. Not very big, but it serves the purpose. The risers make it the perfect height for cutting or basting.
First, I take my backing [a Laura Ashley 100% cotton sheet, queen size] and center it on the table.
There's no need to tape anything - the weight of the fabrics will hold it nicely. Then, I add my batting - in this case, a thrifted flannel sheet. I fold it in half the long way, then in half again the short way, so I can find the center as I lay it out on the table.
This is also where I apologize for the quality of the pics - sometimes I had the flash on and sometimes not.
After it's centered, I put the quilt top on, and smooth everything out.
And I start pinning, from the center out. I never, ever, ever close my pins until the entire quilt top is pinned. If you close them as you go, you will get puckers - the closing of the pins will cause the layers to shift.
After I pin the part on the table top, I move the quilt - just sliding it along carefully until I get a whole new part to pin.
See how wrinkled it looks? I just run my hands over the top and it smooths right out. If I need to, I lift a layer or two for stubborn wrinkles, but usually the weight has kept the bottom two layers just fine.
Now it's nice and smooth, so I continue pinning. I keep going, moving the quilt as needed and being oh so careful not to impale my toes on any pins on the floor.
Once all the pins are in, I'll go back and close them all. I have a bad habit of running my hands over the closed pins - it's not a recommended method for finding any open ones you forgot. Then, I get the scissors and cut off the excess fabric around the edges.
Makes it easier to move through my machine. This method of basting has saved my back, and I've never had even the tiniest pucker on my quilts. I do this for every quilt - whether I'm going to hand or machine quilt it. For smaller quilts, table-top size or smaller, I do use tape - there's not enough quilt weight to keep it straight.
Now. Anybody have any suggestions on how to quilt this puppy? I'm open to all reasonable ideas, lol. I may hand-quilt it. Also, I can't quite figure out what color to use - I hate invisible thread, so that's not an option. All ideas welcome!