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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Quilt Marking

By Rose Marie Castonguay

There are times when I'm working on a project, I know right off the bat what hand quilting designs to use. Then there are the times when nothing sings to me. Or after the top has been sandwiched, everything changes or I want more designs added.

For my pumpkin quilt, the centre portion got marked up, sandwiched and hand quilted fairly quickly. For the borders, nothing came to mind until much later and then it hit me what I should do. It should be easy, right? Nope, not that easy. For this quilt, I used Hobbs Poly-Down batting and how can you mark borders when the centre portion has already been quilted and the borders don't lay flat and are kind of puffed up? My DH came to the rescue by cutting out a wooden template of my quilting hoop. He just traced the inside of the hoop onto a piece of 1" thick board.

Then he cut out the template using a jig saw and sanded the cut areas afterwards.

Now, I can place the board inside my hoop and lay a border section on top and then place the outer hoop section on, secure it and then trace whatever design I want. This way, everything is taut and my border lays flat. Much easier. Before having this board and with my quilt in the hoop, I tried using some books underneath the quilt but nothing stayed in place and the markings were not that great. They were crooked, etc. Now, this is making me very happy.

The one drawback to the board is that it is very heavy to handle. A year has passed and now I am wondering if a piece of styrofoam would work?

Following the same process, my hoop was traced onto a 1" piece of styrofoam ....

... and then cut out using a knife. Much easier than a jig saw.

It fits nicely into my hoop.

Yes, it works very well. The border section that is in my hoop gets marked up, the styrofoam template is removed and then hand quilting takes place. Both the wooden and styrofoam work well. All that is needed is a firm surface to work on.

I have just finished quilting the borders on my pumpkin quilt and it is now ready for finishing. Oh, happy days!

Have a great day!


  1. sounds like you came up with some nice ideas. Marking a quilt can be a challenge at times.

  2. I use a hoop with an attached base that is solid. I just recently realized that flipping over my hoop and laying the quilt across it was a nice surface to use to mark my quilt. I love those kind of ah ha moments. Thanks for sharing! Love your pumpkin quilt, btw!

  3. necessity...the mother of invention!

  4. What a creative way to mark those pesky corners and borders!

  5. Love this idea, I will have to try it out!! Thank you so much for sharing.


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