How to prepare for Longarm Quilting

The quilt top and backing (also batting if customer supplied) should be received in a condition that is 100% ready for quilting.  If any additional work is needed by me to prepare for quilting, additional charges will apply.  You can avoid any additional fees by taking steps below to prepare for longarm quilting.

Backing Fabric

Square your quilt backing fabric.  Squaring the backing fabric is necessary for the longarm quilting process.  If you are not sure how to square your backing fabric, click here to view a video.

Backing fabric needs to be at least 10-12 inches wider and longer than the quilt top.  This means having 5-6 inches all the way around the quilt top.

WIDE BACKS ONLY – please supply at least an additional 12 inches (6 inches all the way around the quilt top).  Wide backs can be unevenly wound on the bolt.  Backings need to be “squared” to be placed on the longarm quilting frame.  The squaring process does trim down the backing piece, and I have found that if a wide back is uneven, it results in more fabric that needs to be trimmed.

If backing fabric is pieced, use 1/2 inch seam and press open.  Also do not leave selvage inside the seam (seam allowance).  Selvage does not stretch and move, like the rest of the fabric, and may cause puckers if left in the seam.  Selvage is good on the outside of the backing, just not good if included in the seam allowance.

Press the backing fabric so it is wrinkle free and any seams lay flat.

Quilt Tops

Clip loose threads from the back of the quilt top.  This is especially important if white fabric is part of your quilt.  Threads can show through the quilt top, if left inside.

I recommend squaring the quilt top before quilting.

Borders should lay flat.  Wavy borders result from having excess fabric in the border.  Excess fabric will cause the outside of the quilt not to lay flat and may result in puckers.  Click here for info to help with attaching flat borders to your quilt.

Anchor all seams that will remain on the outside of the border.  As the quilt is handled, seams on the border will become loose and may pop open if not secured.

If the outside border is made of pieced blocks, for example, flying geese, stay-stitch all the way around the edge of the quilt at 1/8 of an inch.  This will prevent the seams from pulling apart.  Stitching within 1/8 inch will fall inside the binding.

Press the quilt top so it is wrinkle free and all seams lay flat.


I have batting available. Click here to see the batting page for details.  

If you supply the batting, batting should be 8 inches longer and wider than the quilt top.  (that’s 4 inches all the way around).