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    Squared to unsquare after quilting

    My perfectly squared up quilt with a border with mitered corners went to the quilter and came back "unsquared." It was off on one side by almost an inch! I wasn't sure what happened, but I squared it back up and now my border and two of my mitered corners are uneven. It's obvious to me, but will go unnoticed by the receiver of this quilt. I want to know what went wrong and how I can avoid this mistake in the future? The quilt was made up of half square triangles in a chevron pattern. Maybe that will help you help me figure out where I went wrong. Thank you

    #2
    Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

    The quilting process stretches the fabric. That is why you have to have additional fabric and batting to allow for that. I never square the quilt until after it has been quilted. You will not notice the 'loss' as much. I also only square the corners...but then I am not a perfectionist and quilt for love and to give quilty hugs to others. As Jenny says, "finished is better than perfect".
    Blankets wrap you in warmth, quilts wrap you in love

    Marilyn......
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      #3
      Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

      Originally posted by auntiemern View Post
      The quilting process stretches the fabric. That is why you have to have additional fabric and batting to allow for that. I never square the quilt until after it has been quilted. You will not notice the 'loss' as much. I also only square the corners...but then I am not a perfectionist and quilt for love and to give quilty hugs to others. As Jenny says, "finished is better than perfect".
      I miss the "Like" button! I would have liked Marilyn's reply. She is absolutely right about the quilting.
      Vonnie

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        #4
        Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

        Ok. So what would be the point of all this obsessive squaring of each block, squaring before adding borders, and squaring after borders if it's just going to get all wonky after the quilting process? I'm all about taking extra time to achieve perfection, but only if it's going to stay that way. It seems to me forego the squaring of everything until after quilting. Anyone have any suggestions? I'm all ears since I'm new to this.

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          #5
          Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

          I can't speak to all of your questions because I'm fairly new at quilting, also. But I have learned to listen to Vonnie when she makes a suggestion

          As far as squaring pieces and blocks, that part is necessary in order to get the blocks to come together correctly and in order to match seams as you sew the top together. I square pieces/blocks, but I don't square the completed top until after it's quilted and then, I only square up to remove excess batting/backing and apply the binding. I don't worry about small difference between the top, middle and bottom, for instance. The eye will never pick that up.

          Having said all that, I have been known to 'convince' blocks to go where they are supposed to go... . Someone with more experience will come along and hopefully explain it better.
          Cindy

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            #6
            Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

            It also could be that your longarm quilter didn't load the top and backing on exactly right and it stretched it out a bit. There are a lot of variables in quilting. The squaring of each block as you sew the top together helps make points and seams meet and your top go together easier.
            K is for Karen 😊​..................
            Cremation - My last hope for a smokin' hot body.


            Before you speak,
            T - is it TRUE?
            H - is it HELPFUL?
            I - is it INSPIRING?
            N - is it NECESSARY?
            K - is it KIND?

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              #7
              Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

              Does easing the blocks not work when trying to get points and edges to meet? Is that not the way to do it? I seriously haven't squared blocks and my tops have seemed to come together pretty squared, give or take 1/4 in most of the time.

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                #8
                Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

                Originally posted by Kenz View Post
                Does easing the blocks not work when trying to get points and edges to meet? Is that not the way to do it? I seriously haven't squared blocks and my tops have seemed to come together pretty squared, give or take 1/4 in most of the time.
                Easing often works, and if you are successful with that method, then keep on doing it. One of the purposes of squaring your blocks is to assure the blocks are the same size - which also enables you to match seams. Then, there are some blocks, particularly those that are made with triangles, where the block is made larger, with the intent of squaring it down to size.
                If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you.- Zig Ziglar

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                  #9
                  Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

                  Originally posted by Kenz View Post
                  Does easing the blocks not work when trying to get points and edges to meet? Is that not the way to do it? I seriously haven't squared blocks and my tops have seemed to come together pretty squared, give or take 1/4 in most of the time.
                  If you are easing it often, there might be a lot of bias stretch in your blocks too! That does make it more difficult to load on a long arm. If I have a lot of bias edges on the outer part of the quilt it makes it more difficult to load on my long arm.
                  Happy Quilting!

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                    #10
                    Re: Squared to unsquare after quilting

                    I agree with all the above answers, and will include that if the quilt is loaded too tightly on the frame this can happen. But it's not only the LA that can cause this. The choice of quilting can also cause this, especially if it's a custom job. If the quilting isn't even throughout the quilt, this can happen. A lot of times our "perfectly square" quilts are a result of a lot pressing and steaming and stretching to get the block straight. Do this to enough blocks, and you've got a perfectly square quilt by default, and some of them can shrink right back again. It's always a gamble - whether you're piecing or quilting - that the end result will be perfect. One reason I like to add borders. Better to square up a border and lose an inch there than in my quilt squares! It's much less noticeable in a border.
                    Last edited by cindirae; June 22, 2016, 05:47 PM.
                    Tenacity: The quality or fact of being very determined; determination.

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