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LA 17 - Nix Beautiful Behinds!?
This is one of the newsletters in a series of almost thirty on "Getting The Most Out Of Your Longarming Dollar." That was the title of one of Ruth's talks at Shipshewana's Schoolhouse training sessions during their Quiltfest.
The purposes of those talks and these newsletters are to:
  • Allow you to get the best longarm quilting results;
  • Have you end up with a work of art of which you are proud;
  • Anticipate the needs of your longarmer because that impacts the cost; and,
  • Make the longarming process easier on your longarmer so that they may focus on the quality of their craftsmanship.
Prior emails in this series can be found on our web-site: on the tab newsletters.
Fat Quarters Are Fabric
Nix Beautiful Behinds

Many quilters would nix comments on their behinds . . . unless you are talking about their quilts. In the later case some quilters go "whole hog." We get quilts where the determining which is the top and which is the back gets interesting.

[By the way, have you ever wondered why a quilt has a top and a back instead of a top and a bottom?]

What's The Point

Since we are interested in getting the most out of our longarming investment, consider the longarmer. When all is mounted and ready to go, the attention is on the top because that is where the design is. This is especially important in a custom quilt or even an edge-to-edge with custom borders. Without a mirror or being very nimble, seeing the back is only an occasional thing. Often times seeing the back only occurs upon rolling the quilt forward, to make sure it is flat, and, at the end, to inspect the stitching.


There are several implications to this delimma. One is that it is very difficult to align a design on the back with the front. Another is that it is impossible to align borders on the back with borders on the front. An additional is that with custom quilting, the design that works with the tops' piecing will have nothing in common with the back, and may even look bizarre.

We had a situation where both the top and the back were highly pieced and they were exactly the same size. The solution: make two quilts with our plain extra-wide backing. The result: happy quilter!

The Take-Away

The take-away here is that beautifully pieced backs are hard on the longarmer. It will also increase the cost due to the attempts to align the top and the back. And, it will most likely not produce the results that were envisioned.


If you are in the position of having extra of that gorgeous fabric, then consider making two items. An example would be a bed sized quilt and a matching throw or wall hanging. Another would be making a quilt with pillow shams.
May The Lord Richly Bless You!
Rick & Ruth Grihalva
At Forever In Stitches our goal is to further the art of quilting and longarming.
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