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Where do you lay out your quilts to put them together? Help needed.....

OK I will admit it I need help with ideas on where to lay out my quilts to layer the tops, batting, and backing and pin them together. I moved to a mobile home and do not have the room I had before to lay them out on my diningroom table. I have a bad back and the floor does not seem like a good option so any ideas please would be a help If you have any suggestions please feel free to share them. Also what do you use to pin them together, Safety pins, quilt pins, Quilt basting spray, long stitches, ??????? Thanks so much and Happy Quilting to all

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I haven't been at this very long but when I started small projects were done on the bed - that wasn't too good due to the angle of viewing.........then came the living room floor - hhhmm, the dog thought that was fun to do!.........now I have a little design wall and it's wonderful. My problem with that is that my sewing area is rather compact and I don't have the distance to stand back (looking through the camera lense helps a little) and study what I'm doing but, the wall is a blessing! It was made very simply from (pink) wall insulation board and a flannel sheet pulled snug around it and screwed into the wall........probably not professional "grade" but good enough for me! Hope this helps. j
Thanks Janet for the great idea. I use my twin bed now to lay them out to plan how they are sewn together as my diningroom table is used for sewing now that its to cold in my room to quilt this winter. It just is not big enough to lay them out to pin together the layers for quilting them and the bed does not work well either. I eventually will have another diningroom table set up in my spare room so i can lay them out there I hope when I get my storage shed finished so I can move out the stuff that I have stored there to make room for my craft room in the spare room.
Blessing to you for sharing your idea I will use it in my new room when I get it.
I must say, I was "on the fly" (as an aunt used to say re: when she was in a hurry) and I didn't read your note very well this morning! You were talking about layering them - not design/piece work! Sorry for the ditzy answer on my part!! To layer them - the dog and I do it on the floor and it certainly isn't ideal! Luann had some interesting suggestions. I'll read more clearly the next time!
That is fine Janet I know what on the fly is. I just got back from womens bible study and have so much to do before I can sit down and relax and I am allready so tired. Blessings and thanks for the help anyway I thought of pinning a flannel tablecloth to my wall backwards to work a design out on to see it that would work for planning out the designs for the finished blocks on my Mystery Quilt I am doing with Eighty 10 and a half in blocks. may try it then. Blessings, Deb
I make use of our big open floors at church. I go over during the day when nothing is going on and first put down a king sized flat sheet. I get it all stretched tight, then tape it down. Then I do the layers (backing, batting and top). When I get them all smooth and nice, I roll up the top two, then spray adhesive, roll them back out a little at a time, smoothing as I go. Repeat with the next layer, trim around the edges and you're good to go! Be prepared to have lots of onlookers-- for some reason, seeing me crawling around on my hands and knees with my cockatoo perched on my back draws spectators! If I don't feel like getting down on the floor, I just push 2 or three folding tables together and work on them.
I use a hollow core door on saw horses. The door is very light and you could put it on top of chair backs or whatever when you are using it and stand it against the wall when you are not. It is not perfect since you can't lay out a whole quilt at a time without some of it hanging off--but it is good enough for me.

You could also make a ceiling frame--4 boards and 4 C-clamps--suspend it from the ceiling. Pin, staple, or tack the backing onto the frame and then lay the batting and backing on top. My ex-husband's grandmother used nothing else. She would roll up one end and start quilting in the middle and work her way out to one edge and then do the same on the other side. When she wasn't working she just rolled the rope that she used to suspend it from the ceiling around the boards to raise it up out of the way.

Luann
Hi Thanks for the idea of the haning ceiling frame can you give me more details I can not picture it in my head do y9u use hooks and hang the boards from chains or ropes. I do not think my mobile home ceiling will hold that much weight for that type. I am a large women with a bad back so getting up and down off the floor is not easy. The table was a nice height and I will try to use the ones at church on Wednesdays when we go to quilt and see if I can'/t get some together to work on finishing. I get to top done but have a hard time finishing them by putting them together. I used my diningroom talbe to hand tie them also so I will have to figure out what to do there also. blessings. Deb in NY
Do you have any kind of local fabric or craft shop nearby? I know my local quilt shop has tables in their classroom area, and you can use the tables for basting when they don't have classes scheduled (you just have to call ahead to check)...

Kim in MN
I go use the tables in our church fellowship hall, and I don't know about other areas, but our church is open for things like that when not in use for regular meetings to anyone in the community, not just members.
Advantage, leave the cell OFF and you will have peace and quiet while you get the job done.
I will try to do a better job with my description of the frame. You need four long, straight boards; four hooks, four "C" clamps, some light weight, but sturdy rope. Find some nice tall boy and get him to put the hooks into the ceiling for you. They should be in a rectangle about 2 feet shorter than the boards--or about one foot inside the outside of the square/rectangle if you laid the boards out on the floor. So if your boards were ten feet long, then the hooks would be about 8 feet square. Each piece of rope should be about 6 feet long. Make a loop or slip knot in each piece and hang it over the hooks. Use the 4 "C" clamps to clamp the boards together in a square or rectangle. Loop the loose end of the rope around the boards OUTSIDE OR BEYOND the "C" clamps. Just loop the 2 long ways boards. Wrap however many loops you need to raise the frame to a comfortable height. Attach (staple, pin, tack) the batting, right side DOWN to all four boards--snug enough to be smooth, but not super tight. Lay on the batting and the quilt on top. If the quilt is small you can reach in all the way around to baste (pin, safety pin, thread, plastic). You can then loosen the quilt from the two side boards and roll it up around one end board until you reach near the middle and start quilting from the middle out. You can use the ropes to adjust it to a comfortable height for you and your chair. You can also make one side higher than the other to get a slant on the top which will make it easier to quilt. When you quilt out to the end on one side, move your chair and roll up the other end. Hope this makes sense.

Hopefully some of the other folks on this site will have suggestions and improvements on my idea. I think you could do this with rigid PVC if you used little pieces of elastic with clamps on each end to hold the backing. The same thing with iron pipe, but you would have to coat it with something so it wouldn't rust.

Luann

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