Q & A

Q & A2019-02-24T12:49:52+00:00
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Printing images onto fabric

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I wish to make a cot quilt for my expected grandchild and would like to make some of the squares personalised by printing images from my computer onto the fabric. I see there are several methods of achieving this and wonder if in your experience you could recommend a tried and tested way. As this is for a baby, it will obviously be subjected to washing so the method needs to produce waterproof squares   Answer: As far as I am aware the fabrics that have been designed to go through your printer for use with your computer work well - and I am not aware that the brand makes any difference.   These should be readily available from your quilt shop (or www.creativequilting.co.uk).

You could also use  a method which uses fixing ink - but that is a little messier - but used by the textile girls a lot and I think produced by a company called Electric Quilt (who design computere software) and I know is stocked by The Cotton Patch and possibly Art Van Go as well as they are great suppliers of all things required by textile artists.

Does the Microtak gun make holes in the quilt?

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Well its a yes and a no;  the original gun did have HUGE tags that made really nasty holes and I refused to use or stock them (I owned a quilt shop at the time);  however the current generation has a much smaller needle and tiny tags which hold the layers better since we have moved to flatter wadding and don't make holes in the fabric.  I use them all the time and despite having several 000 in each box seem to be constantly running out!!!!

TIP:   do invest in a tack remover as well as this will keep your quilt safe from little snips from your scissors and also stop you being tempted to use your best scissors to remove them (and spoil your scissors) NB:  all these products are in the shop

Marking designs onto a dark fabric.

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Do you have a favoured method of transferring quilting patterns? I have a dark sashing and I am finding it difficult to transfer on to it.   Answer: Yes dark colours are always a challenge;   I do mention some options in the video Quilting Your Quilt

and it depends a little on how complex the pattern is;  if its a real stencil pattern then I would use Quilt-and-Tear  but if its a simple pattern try the Hera marker (or scoring with the back of your scissors)

Fusible Wadding

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I have purchased fusible wadding for a wall hanging made yesterday, but it came off a roll and there were no instructions.  Do I just layer up with my project back and front and iron on?   Answer: I seem to recall that a good press will adhere the wadding BUT a gentle iron will add to the fusion; so see what works!

To sash or not to sash (your quilt)

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I have just finished 12 blocks and i'm ready to put them together.
The question is 'to sash or not to sash'. Is there a rule?   Answer: Definitely personal choice but you might also be governed by how big you want the quilt to be;  and are you adding more borders?   In which the 1st outside sashing could be considered to be a border - see The First Sampler Quilt series if you want to know what I mean.

Also it depends on the block:  by putting them together do you get an interesting secondary pattern?   or are there more seams that need matching that you don't want?!?!?

Folded Potholder

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I love the folded potholder you demonstrated.  I will eventually get around to making one for myself but for now i really would like to make one as a 16" pillow topper.  Can it be done that large and in a square shape as opposed to the round? Answer: The answer is yes you can make this bigger - you will need more squares to fold into the pointy shape on each round - from 8 you will then need 16 and you might even have to go up to 32 per round!);
and then to turn it into a square I suggest you use bigger squares (gives you more fudge factor!) select a point for the first one and add to the opposite side and the opposing quadrants (say north, south east and west) (but you could have marked this out on your foundation piece first)

There is quite a bit of fabric and will feel quite heavy - just so you know
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Rotary cutters

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I was wondering if you could tell me which rotary cutters Jennie used in the fabric balls video?  My cutter needs replacing and I fancy one of the safety ones which become safe when raising the cutter from the fabric. Answer: I think Jennie was using the Trucut range of rotary cutter which has a groove in it and is best used with its own ruler;  however Olfa do both sizes 28mm and 45mm cuttter with a self-closing system, and these are readily available from quilt shops (but if in doubt you can contact Isa@creativequilting.co.uk) Want to see the Fabric Balls video?  click here:

How do I know if the fabric is cotton?

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Do a burn test – I know that sounds dramatic but we aren’t suggesting  you set your stash alight!! In essence, cotton fibres ignite as the flame from your match draws near Synthetic fibres curl away from the heat and tend to ‘melt’. Take a few fibres; put into flameproof container with sides maybe,  and apply a small flame from a long handled match maybe, and watch what happens.

Do I need to wash my fabrics before using them?

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To wash or not to wash – that is the question I love the feel of new (quilting) fabric and make so many quilts that I don’t have time to wash them all BUT I am aware that certain colours are notorious for ‘bleeding’ – red and blue in particular – so when in doubt...... no don’t leave them out – deal with them!!

Do I have to quilt my quilt?

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No you don't - older quilts were often fastened with tying and using buttons is another option ( but don't use buttons if the quilt is for a very young child).   Here is a comment from one of our viewers: Thank you for the tying and buttoning for a quilt. I have just tied my Christmas Lap quilt, and found your instructions very helpful.

Quilt as you Go option

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What do you do if the quilt becomes too big to manage? Well quilt as you go is an option - and both Valerie and Carolyn Forster have methods you might like to try:   Valerie uses the machine and Carolyn works by hand: Here is the comment from Heather - I have also just re-watched your video on how to join a quilt as you go project using the machine instead of hand sewing.

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