I had a very productive afternoon yesterday. All three kiddos napped at the same time (!!!) and I layered and basted my Flea Market Fancy quilt top. I've made plenty of twin quilts and smaller, but this is the first queen size quilt. I was a little intimidated to baste it, but it went surprisingly well.
For a long time, basting was my least favorite part of the quilting process. Not for any reason in particular, I was just too impatient and wanted to skip that part. The last couple of quilts have been different, though, and I've really enjoyed this step. Now I like to spend some quiet time with the quilt, trimming stray threads, and admiring (hopefully that and not cringing over) my piecework.
Here are the things that I use to baste:
1 - Pins. I always pin, never spray. Not because I don't think it is a good idea, I've just never tried!
2 - Scissors. I keep a pair of small scissors close by to trim the stray threads that pop up between the seams. I couldn't seem to find my little ones yesterday, so the big old fabric scissors had to do.
3 - A beverage. A can of diet Coke usually keeps me company. Late night pinning sometimes requires a glass of wine. Not sure if that is the best idea ever!
4 - I always use a spoon to close the pins. Have you ever tried that? I read that tip in a quilt magazine a few years back, and it sure makes things easier. After the pin is through the layers, just slide the spoon under the point, and close pin. Does that make sense? Pinning goes quickly, and no more sore fingertips!
5 - My iPod. I listen to either an audiobook or a podcast. If it has been a crazy day with the kids, I usually work in silence. With three kids ages 5 and under, we don't have much of that in our house. :)
Okay, I'm off to quilt this thing, wish me luck! And don't forget, today is the last day to sign up for the Heather Ross giveaway. I'll announce the winner later on in the weekend.
PS - Do you have any good basting tips you'd like to share?