Pins, Thread and Spray

I basted the May TIF challenge last night and wondered how other quilters baste their quilts.  I always pin baste, whether I’m machine quilting or hand quilting.  I thread basted a quilt once with horrible results.  That one experience turned me off from thread basting forever.  


I made a Sunbonnet Sue wall quilt for my mom, about 40 inches square.  I decided to hand quilt the Sue blocks because I hand appliquéd them.  I took my time and used the recommended spacing.  When I started quilting everything started shifting.  I kept catching my rings in the basting threads and pulling them, then trying to readjust the top by smoothing out the fabric.  By the time I finished quilting the center, the backing was a couple inches shorter than the bottom of the quilt.  I sewed a strip of fabric to the original backing so I could finish the quilting.  In hindsight, I should have basted in a smaller grid to prevent all that shifting.

tree skirt 

I also like to use basting spray to hold everything in place when I pin, but I only use the Sulky brand.  I tried another brand once.  I’m sure a chemist could tell me exactly what happened and why.  When I sprayed the stuff onto my quilt backing at retreat one year, it came out of the can in black flecks.  I ran into the bathroom to try washing it off.  I ended up with a gray splotch on my white backing that never did come out.  The quilt, a tree skirt, turned out fine, and since no one ever sees the back the gray splotch didn’t matter.


If you are basting challenged like I am, you can check out this information on pin basting and thread basting.  

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