I had a few questions about working with flannel and cotton print together. I always back my quilts in flannel. I LOVE the weight it adds.
This quilt however has a large percentage of flannels pieced into the front. Until this quilt I’ve never experienced any problems with flannel. I’m uncertain if it was this quilt, or the 35wt thread or my machine that has been uncooperative.
It was looking like this:
As I mentioned in my last post, I spent some time with my seam ripper. The layers were traveling. I wasn’t getting any puckering, but I was getting some “waves” to the top. I was quilting from the back to use the wavy lines printed on the fabric to guide my quilting.
I’ve never been one to use a larger needle for quilting and this was an occasion where it was a necessity. I also lowered the thread tension and lengthened my stitch.
I do have a few techniques I use with flannel and discovered a few new ones:
-Be sure to wash and dry it!
-When piecing with flannel I keep my needle down and raise my presser foot A LOT to realign.
I find it goes wonky at first. When I was piecing this nine patch the other day I pinned beyond the seams that I wanted to match. I generally don’t do this.
-I baste the Hell out of it.
-I tried a new tip for binding with flannel.
Red Pepper Quilts suggests zig zagging the binding edges together before sewing it to the quilt. Since I was binding the quilt in flannel too I thought this might help with the “traveling” of temperamental binding.
- Last, I serged the flannel edges of the quilt.
I had to really guide the flannel edge of the quilt while serging it, but I think it paid off. It was a breeze sewing the binding on, and for the little amount of work it took with these two steps, the final product looked great. I might always do this, I’m a sucker for a smooth clean look.
I was planning on sewing the binding down tonight, but I’m off to pack for Portland. What could be better than a train ride and a small quilt to stitch?
I would love to hear any tips you all have for finishing a quilt or working with flannel.
Edited for New Found Tips:
-Pickle Dish wrote in a post about using spray basting too. I think this would be excellent.
-I generally use my walking foot for piecing in addition to quilting, but I did realize that the Viking at the shop you have to add it, so I hadn’t been using it for the nine patch piecing. At home mine is built into the machine.