I've had a few people ask me how I quilt as you go so here is a sort of step by step of how I do it, and I'll continue it in another post as I keep piecing the top of this quilt.
I usually don't piece the backs of my quilts so that there is a quilt on both sides, I just use blocks on the back that are either same size as the finished pieced blocks that make up the front or a little larger like on this log cabin quilt that will be my next UFO to WIP after the two 'Man Quilts' for my hubby and my boss.
See how the back is a bit bigger than the front and I already did the quilting on this section? Then I just add to the back, add to the batting, add to the front. Doing a quilt that is like this is pretty quick because you just add it in rows.
The quilt that I'm making for my hubby you can't really do that way because it is not symetrical. Step 1 is spray baste the center portion of the back onto a piece of batting that is about 3 or 4 inches larger than it all the way around:
Step 2 is marking the center of this, flipping it over, and centering the 'top' center piece on it and then pinning the top portion on:
Once you get it all pinned or spray basted, whatever your preference then you quilt this part leaving about 2 inches around the outside unquilted:
Next you have to piece another "row" or "strip or whatever you want to call it of the back and sew it on, making sure the top and the batting are folded back out of the way so you don't sew them:
Now you zigzag your next batting piece to the batting that you already have:
Then it looks like this:
Next thing I do is spray baste that piece of "backing" onto the batting. With this quilt since it is random I am going to add another piece of batting and another strip of the backing before I get back to piecing the top, that way I have more "room" for placing my top pieces.
Zigzagging on more batting.
Piece another row of the "back":
This is the tricky part. You have to peel back a couple inches of batting and make sure the quilt top is folded back so you don't sew on it. I'm actually going to buy some "Fusi boo" batting before I make another quilt like this. It is batting with fusible on both sides so you just make your sandwich and run an iron over it. I want to try it because then I could iron and stay a couple of inches away from the sides that I'm going to be adding to. The reason is once you spray baste something that sticky is there. While I sew this seam I sew with the sticky side up and then every 8 inches or so I stop with the needle down and use an alcohol soaked Q-tip to get the sticky off of my presser foot, sew another 8 inches then unsticky the presser foot.. this gets very old when you have a long seam to sew, but if you don't do this then your fabric ends up getting stretched. I suppose I could try to sew these seams with my free motion foot but then I have to make sure I'm right at 1/4 inch and sewing straight!! I use lots of pins on this seam also.
That's it for this installment. Next will be how I get my random piecing on the front to match up.
The way I quilt as you go when I'm not piecing the backs is so much easier that I worked on the log cabin in the first picture of this post for a couple of hours and it was going so quick. Maybe tomorrow I'll show how I do that if I end up snowed in and not being able to go to work. :)