The Free Motion Quilting Project: Quilt Top Count!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Quilt Top Count!

Yes, I'd like you to count your quilt tops for me! I'm really curious to know how many quilt tops you have on hand. These are patchwork quilts you have pieced completely, but not basted and quilted.

No, I'm not trying to make you feel guilty. I'm just curious to know how many tops you have and why they are not quilted. What is the #1 reason why you have not quilted all these tops?

I ran a count of mine today and it's over 20 quilts in sizes ranging from small table runners and tote bag fronts to twin / throw sized quilts.

The main reason these tops are not quilted is they are not a priority. I have other quilts that need to be finished for work or that mean more to me to finish, and these tops just weren't as important.

Now for an even stickier question - do you WANT to quilt all  your tops? What makes one more desirable than another? 

Please share in the comments below!

Leah Day

48 comments:

  1. I have 2. The reason for one is that I didn't really like the top so I didn't want to finish it, the reason for the second is pretty depressing, so lets just say- I decided it wasn't worth the expense of the batting and the backing to finish them when I no longer needed it for its intended use.

    If I make a top I almost always quilt it. My problem is more finishing the top before moving on. I have lots of incomplete projects (maybe 10?). But I really dislike piecing. I like quilting. (I am however lazy and tend to just stipple when I know I could do much more interesting things.)

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  2. I have 19 tops that are not quilted and the main reason is time/priority. They are mostly older ones that have never made it to the top of the todo list.

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  3. At the moment I have two quilt tops that have not been quilted. The reason is that I made them using some fast techniques and hate the result. I have made over 30 quilts.

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  4. I think my total is zero for completed but not quilted tops. There's one top that's sandwiched and at a longarm quilter's house, going to be done next week. Two tops are under construction on my design wall, and I just finished binding another. I'm surprised, I guess I'm more of a "finish one before starting the next" person than I thought.

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  5. I have about 25 tops waiting to be quilted and finished. I think my #1 reason is up to now I haven't planned the time to quilt them - it's always easier to just start/continue piecing other projects! I did get a frame about 3 or 4 years ago, but is not computerised and I only have a Pfaff GQ on it. This has helped to make a dent in the backlog... and YES, I do want ALL those tops quilted! So I can give them away and make space for more tops!

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  6. I have two tops quilted, but not binded. I'm going to bind them soon. Then again one other top ready. Think I need to make it bigger before quilting it. I love to start new quilts, and have many blocks in plastic bags needing to be joined. I love being in the process, and don't think much about the product.

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  7. You inspired me to count my unfinished/unquilted tops today. I found 23 so far (I think I have them all, maybe?)Some need borders so they aren't ALL "completed" tops but close enough that I counted them. And I found several "nearly forgotten" UFO's too. Ugh.
    The #1 reason I have not quilted the tops is FEAR... I like them and don't want to "mess them up" at this point. I know I need to practice FMQ to be any good at it, but I'm a expert in procrastination. (I can give ANYone a run for their money in this department...but I'll do it later ;))
    Yes, I want to quilt them. I need to do it myself as I can't afford to send them out. I know I need to practice daily. It would fit in with my New Year's resolution too which is "Clean something, fix something, sew something".
    Ok so now that they are all out where I have to look at them, I'll will try to get ONE done this month!
    Thanks for the inspiration both in checking on the tops and showing me ideas for quilting them on your wonderful blog.

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  8. I have 2. One is a panda mini quilt, it's not quilted because I'm debating adding borders to make it bigger. I do know how I'm going to quilt it though - your bamboo design in the background and sharp stippling for the fur. The second is a recent lap quilt that isn't quilted yet because I'm working on getting a piece of MDF to baste it on. It probably doesn't count, but I have a quilt half quilted that needs unpicking (so it will be just a top again) - it was basted very badly on carpet and has parts that are nice and smooth and others that are horrible baggy and puckered.

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  9. Just one for me, completed but not basted or quilted. Two in need of borders. And countless incomplete quilt tops. I do actually want all the quilts I have in progress right now - but its a lot of work to get them quilted due to the small throat on my DSM, especially the larger quilts, which is probably why I have so many UFOs and few finishes.

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  10. I have 12 tops waiting to be quilted...and about 15 more in various stages of completion! The biggest reason for not getting them done is that I don't have backing or batting ready. I own a longarm, so the actual quilting only slows down because of my day job. I am going to keep a roll of batting on hand, so all I need to work on is piecing the back as soon as I finish the top. Sometimes I will splurge on extra wide fabric so the back is a single piece.

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  11. 1 quilt top.
    I hate to put binding on so I have 4 ready to bind.
    1 bed, 2 lap and a wall hanging.

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    Replies
    1. I always have several hanging out at the binding stage too!

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  12. I only have 4 tops ready to quilt. They are not quilted because haven't practiced enough to feel like I can FMQ and like the end results. I have finished 5 quilts by just doing stitch in the ditch. I have about 10 quilts in progress because I see a pattern that I really like and can't wait to start it. I also feel that I tend to stop on a project because I know it will never get quilted. I have joined your Block Party hoping to learn enough to finish something. Thanks!

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  13. I have a least 10 quilt tops. I'm not confident in my free-motion quilting skills, and don't want to just do straight-line, so I'm going to sort through them and pull out a few that I don't mind practicing on.

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  14. What a cool question!!! I have 3---one on the design wall, which I hope will be quilted in the next month or two. Then there is a very small quilt top I call kissing geckos, and a quilt top for myself with lizards, turtles and dragonflies on it. That one has been languishing in my closet because it's for me, and you know how that goes!

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  15. Oh---and yes, I do want to quilt them. :)

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  16. I've only one, but that's how I worked lol. One or two quilts at the times. I have neither the space or the mind to leave many tops aside unquilted. The main reason this one isn't quilt yet, is because it's a crazy patch quilt. It has plenty of embroidery designs on it and cannot figure how to quilt it. I usually free-motion my tops very quickly, so they are gone and out of the way. So sad:( My goal is to SLOW down and enjoy my free-motion design.

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  17. I have 4 tops in progress, and 9 completed but not quilted. I made a few bed sized, but I have a fear of manipulating a quilt of that size under my machine. So I disassembled them and got 3-4 throw quilts out of each. I did the quilting for the ones I gave way, but obviously I am backlogged on the rest, and 1 is so ugly I dint know what to do with it! Also, I rather enjoy the Design stage of quilting. Picking colors, block design, size, etc. By the time I am done piecing, I already have so many more ideas for designs that I jump to the new quilt. This year I would like to finish the quilting and see if I can make some money off of any of these.

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  18. Thanks for asking.
    I believe I have three completed tops ready for quilting.
    They are not quilted because I have prayer quilts to quilt for others, some more tops I wish to piece, and a very limited amount of time that becomes even more limited by fatigue (I do have a full time job).
    Do I want to quilt them? Absolutely--and many, many more. I'm even more passionate about quilting (and quiltmaking in general) than I am about teaching; this is something I've begun notice as I come closer to retirement.

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  19. Leah, I have about 50 tops not quilted. I have been watching your videos and have learned to machine quilt from you. The reason SOME are not quilted is just the size. I find I can do queen size (it is a struggle because of space limitations) but definitely not king. The rest are all just waiting. Waiting for more batting, waiting for time. I've completed about 40 charity quilts in 2015 and about the same in 2014. I did some for me or friends. 2016 is going to be my year to try to get more of the tops quilted and find them homes. They might go to charities - they might stay here!

    You are my champion of quilting. Your stories and comments and tips all gave me the confidence to try machine quilting. I cannot than you enough for your free motion quilting project. I pass this site on to many of my quilting buddies and encourage them to LISTEN to you and watch and try.

    Thank you so much for being here for us1

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    Replies
    1. You're super welcome! My goal is to help you get more of those quilts quilted and figure out ways to overcome these challenges. But I'm also finding that some quilters just really prefer to piece, and that's ok too! Thank you for sharing!

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  20. I have 4 tops awaiting quilting. One of them I got loaded on the frame today! Yippy! I think what holds me back from quilting my tops is getting hung up on making a masterpiece of quilting techniques each time. Sometimes that is a great idea and gives me a chance to learn grow in my techniques. Other times it makes it unnecessarily complex. The one I've loaded I decided to do in an all-over wave pattern. It will give it movement and a fun modern look without the perfection of having to create a masterpiece!

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  21. I don't have any quilt tops sitting complete, waiting to be sandwiched and quilted. I pretty much do one quilt at a time. If I will be going on vacation, I make a little something for hand quilting, otherwise, it is all FMQ for me, thanks to you getting me started!

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  22. Six! Hmm, I have two baby quilts (not priorities at the moment), a country style lap quilt made for a set of panels (the colours are hideously 1999 and I don't like it so will put it in a charity bag once I've done a basic quilting job on it), a Hot Cross Buns quilt top (next on my to-do list as I need it for a gift), a blue patchwork quilt (is about five years in the waiting!), and a Single bed quilt top made from A jelly roll (again, has been superseded by other priorities)

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  23. Sometimes I just don't know what design to use when quilting a top so there it sits in the closet.

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  24. I have one. It's sandwiched but not quilted. I have two tops nearly done, one I'm working on the pieced backing the other needs 140 obelisks appliquéd to the top (this maybe a long long time project). Three cut out ready to sew and 35 in my queue to make.

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  25. Yep, in the 20's for me as well! And the same reason - not a priority. They aren't for anything or anyone specific. A lot of the time I wanted to use the fabric, or play with a particular pattern.

    Some of them sit because I'm stuck on how to quilt it.

    This year I'm working on finishing the tops, instead of starting new ones. (and I need to buy another huge roll of batting! I've been going though one a year at this rate).

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  26. Oh goodness... 4 quilt tops sewn but not yet quilted. The Christmas gifts ones took precedence in 2015. 'Seems like the ones that are for myself usually get finished last, lol.

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  27. I have my completed quilt tops packed away at the moment, but I know I have well over 30 of them. My biggest obstacle has been time. I have recently adjusted my schedule that will allow me to finish these and continue my UFOs and new projects. I have the skills and now I will have the time.

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  28. I have one that is in progress. I try to force myself to completely finish one project before I move to the next but I must admit I finished at least two other smaller projects before this one because this is my first full-sized quilt.

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  29. I have 4 completed tops that need to be quilted. The reason they have not been is because I totally detest the basting process. I like piecing and quilting, just dislike the basting so much. Claudia W

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  30. Did you really have to ask!? 13, is my quick estimate. I've signed up for several machine quilting classes on Craftsy, and am actually working through my tops as I learn techniques from the classes. I have finished 6 quilts using what I'm learning from the classes! I also at least 4 more quilts in various stages of piecing. More to practice quilting on!

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  31. I have only one. It's sitting because I really want to finish the whole quilt myself, start to finish, no strangers involved, yet I don't currently have the skills necessary!

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  32. I've only got 5 or 6 tops that aren't quilted yet. One was a quilt along that I took part in and while I love the finished top I don't have anyone in mind for it so its on the list of jobs for this year (still thinking about how I will quilt it too although I have some ideas). I have 3 small tops which are for donations to a local hospice but I understand they have quite a few at the moment so not as much of a priority at the moment. Another is a sewing themed wallhanging that I didn't have anywhere to hang but now that we have moved house and I have a sewing room I will be quilting that one this year. Its sandwiched and ready to go. I take part in a UFO-along with another blog and that helps to keep me on track!

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  33. My main reason is that I hate basting it. Most of my quilts are large quilts and I have no where good to lay them out and baste them. (If you've done a tutorial on this subject, please post it again).

    The second is that I'm still semi-terrified to free motion quilt them despite having a sit down long arm.

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    1. I thought with a long arm basting was not required?

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    2. For a table mounted longarm, a quilt has to be basted to quilt it. For a rail mounted longarm, the basting happens on the rails. It's one of the reasons I'm actually considering a rail longarm because it would be really nice to baste a quilt by rolling it up and stitching over it with water soluble thread!

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  34. I think I have seven quilt tops ready to be basted and quilted. I have more that are in the blocks stage and more that are being worked on and created. I keep jumping around to get more experience with different techniques, then things happen and I don't sew. So then there is a lot of re-set up and re-learning going on. I wanted to finish my quilts myself, and since I didn't know how to finish them they just piled up! I was very lucky to find Leah's site during the year she challenged herself to do the design a day. Thank you, thank you, thank you Leah! This year I am only working on the unfinished or new projects that are for family or friends. I had been working on charity quilts, they are small and pretty easy to quilt now that I know how to do it. I'll return to that after I get at least ten of my older projects completed and bound!

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  35. Good Morning Leah oh you just don't want to really know. I have about 44 quilts that are just tops..3 that need binding. And I want to quilt most of them because 7 of them were either round robins are done with 2 or 3 other friends so I would like to do those first then I have allot of cuddle quilts for charity that I never got quilted and I could go on and on. I have become a new Juki long arm owner from Santa so hopefully that will help me after I practice some. Happy New Year!

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  36. I have three. Worked on the first one from a pattern specifically picked out for a particular fabric that I had. The second one was a smaller quilt exactly like the first one and the third was from the same pattern, but altogether different colors. Now I'm done with that pattern, I will quilt them all before my next project. Hopefully will be done by the end of the month. They are all donation quilts.

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  37. I have 10 that need to be quilted. Yes, I would like to quilt my own quilts but I get overwhelmed trying to decide "how", "what" "where", to quilt the top. I have had a quilt top hanging on a wall in my living room for over a year. I look at this quilt top every day...still no clue how to quilt it...

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  38. I just learned to fmq two weeks ago. A friend recommended your craftsy class and then showed me in person. At that time I had five tops that needed quilted. I'm now working on top #3, only two more to quilt and I'll be caught up.

    Well, except for the blocks that I'm sewing together during quilting breaks.

    Paisley is the only pattern I've gotten comfortable doing so far, but its working. A friend told me once, "better done than perfect". I'm embracing my beginner quilting. In the end, its a cover for a loved one to sleep under. Seriously, not a single person is going to look at it and say " wow, you stitch length isn't very consistent".

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  39. One more thing to add, I'm fmq on a 1925 Singer model 66. I thought I needed to buy a special machine and/or frame, but have found this old beast to be quite up to the job.

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  40. I think I have 6. Just need to put them together with batting and backing, and get to it.

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  41. I have three in different stages. One I am making more of a comforter and it crib size. The other is a double bed size and why I am taking this challenge and looking at many of your other videos. Another is a crib sized and it is basted and waiting for the decision of what to do with it. Oops I guess it is four as one is pieced but needs the boarders. And now I am starting another but at least I have 12 months before it is time to put it together. But guess what it will be quilted.

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