Sew, What's New?

Curating sewing and quilting talent, techniques, and tutorials, since 1997.

With great attention to fabric selection, colour choices, points being sharp, seams meeting and sundry other things required for piecing together a quilt top, you are now ready to baste the quilt backing, batting and quilt top together.  How to do this??

Traditionally, the three layers were sewn together with large running stitches.  Now most people would probably pin the three layers together with safety pins.  However, in my humble opinion, the best method is to stick the three layers together with a spray adhesive.  This method is fast, efficient and, most importantly, will prevent your layers from moving during quilting.  You will not, therefore, end up with any puckering of your backing fabric.



Let's talk about what we need.  Most obviously is the spray adhesive.  After trying many products I have settled on 505 Spray Adhesive.


It is temporary,  repositionable,  odorless, colourless, has no mist, and does not gum sewing machine needles.  It is acid free and has no CFC's.  Other varieties just haven't cut the mustard when it comes to stickability.  With 505 you will not need to use safety pins at all (unless you feel more comfortable doing so - however, I baste queen size quilts this way and never pin).  It will wash out of quilt.


My batting of choice is Hobbs Polydown100% polyester batting.  I know people feel strongly about their choice of batting but I love this product for its ease of use, its lightness, its beautiful loft that gives my quilts the feel of an old english comforter, its washability. It won't shrink, or beard, or migrate.  Beautiful.


 Photo courtesy of Ballarat Patchwork


 1.  after ironing away all the wrinkles, lie backing fabric right side down on your hard surface (this could be the floor - no carpet - or the table)
2.  using masking tape, tape it to the floor.  make sure the fabric is firm but not stretched.
3.  lay batting down over the backing fabric, smoothing out wrinkles.
4.  fold batting back on itself to about half way
5.  spray folded back side of batting.  be generous with spray but don't 'pool' spray.  wait a few minutes until the batting feels sticky.
6. come around to the unfolded side of the batting and lift up the spayed side by the two corners.
7.  leaning over, gently lower the batting down to the backing fabric.  keep the batting straight between your two hands - lowering it with a 'droop' in the middle will introduce wrinkles in the batting.
8. move your feet towards your hands and  keep doing this in stages until the sticky batting has been lowered completely over the batting.
9.  gently 'pat' the batting down but do not push too hard as you don't want to stretch it.
10.  lay the quilt top (right side up) down over the batting (will be the unsprayed side).  smooth it out gently to remove any wrinkles and bubbles.
11.  as you did with the batting, fold the quilt top back in half on top of itself.  now spray the exposed batting, not the quilt top.  wait a few minutes till the batting is sticky.  as previously with the batting, repeat this process with the other side of the quilt top.  remember to spray the batting and not the quilt.
12.  pick up the quilt top by the corners, lean over and start gently lowering it over the sprayed batting.

13.  as before, continue lowering the quilt top, moving your feet towards your hands, until the quilt top has been completely lowered and placed onto the sticky batting.

14.  Yay - all done!
To avoid folding in fold lines into your quilt (which will not come out because it is stuck down) it is best to spray baste your quilt close to the time you want to quilt it.  Having said that hand quilting with this method is still great.

A big thank you to my Friend Sonya from Sago on Tuesdays who first taught me this method.  I have modified it a little to better suit me but it was Sonya who introduced me to this method.  I never baste any other way now.

Until next time, happy quilting, knitting, sewing, crafting ....






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Replies to This Post

Great instructions!

Thanks Pamela.  I hope it comes in handy for you some time.  Cheers, Karen.

thank you , I had no idea ...

Great, easy way to get great quilting results!!  Cheers, Karen.


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