Machine Quilting a Large Quilt

Some quilts call for hand quilting, some do not. But how many of us can afford a several thousand dollar long arm or free arm quilting machine? It is possible to machine quilt large quilts using your regular, run of the mill, sewing machine.

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Start with sectioning out your quilt. Quilts are nothing but blocks of fabric, so break up the blocks. I find it easiest to split my quilts into rows. Above, I machine quilted 5 rows of the quilt at a time. Be sure to leave plenty of backing fabric to work with around all edges. You can always trim away excess fabric but you can’t easily add more. Try not to quilt all the way to the edge, leave yourself at least a 1/4″ of an edge.

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After your sections are machine quilted together, arrange them in order with the backing facing you. Pin together and machine stitch the rows together, being sure to only stitch the top together, not the batting or backing fabric. Notice how I pulled the batting and backing fabric back from each row I needed to stitch together in the photo.

Once the entire quilt is pieced together, lay the batting and backing back where it belongs and use a simply whip stitch, blind stitch, or your favorite to secure the sections of backing, just as you would for the binding.

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Finally finish off with your borders and binding.

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