How to make a quilt sandwichOver half of quilters surveyed reported spending more time quilting than in previous years. Does this sound like you?

Are you looking for ways to improve your technique? Do you need some advice to turn all those quilt tops into finished quilts?

Learning to make a quilt sandwich the right way helps ensure the success of your quilting project. Find out more about making a quilt sandwich so you can get your project on track.

What Is a Quilt Sandwich?

A quilt sandwich is the pieced quilt top, the batting, and the backing put together. The top and the back are like the bread, and the batting is the filling.

It’s time to make a quilt sandwich after you’ve put your quilt top together and found or assembled the backing. After you make the quilt sandwich, you’ll be ready to sew and bind the quilt.

Before You Get Started

Before you start putting together your quilt, you should take care of a few details. First, iron the quilt top and backing to avoid wrinkles in the quilt.

Second, spread the batting out and let it rest before you use it. This helps prevent bumps or seams.

Third, measure the batting and the backing. The batting should be 2″ larger than the top in all directions. The backing needs to be 2″ larger than the batting in all directions.

For example:

  • Quilt top 40″ x 60″
  • Batting 44″ x 64″
  • Backing 48″ x 68″

This gives you enough room just in case.

Method #1: Lay It Out

Quilters will tell you about several different ways to make a quilt sandwich. The first method lays each layer down in order.

Lay the backing out face down on a large flat surface. Smooth out the wrinkles and tape the backing to the surface with painter’s tape.

Next, spread the batting over the backing. Center the batting so it overlaps the backing evenly and smooth it from the center out.

Finally, put the quilt top face up over the batting. Center it and smooth it out. Then you’re ready to baste the layers together.

Method #2: Roll It Up

The second method starts with the batting. Lay the batting out on a large flat surface and smooth it out. Next, center your quilt top on the batting and smooth it out.

Roll the two layers up together like a jelly roll and set the roll aside. After that, lay the backing down flat. You can tape it to the surface with painter’s tape if you want.

Finally, place the roll onto the backing about 2″ from the edge. Unroll it and smooth out any bumps.

Basting Quilt Layers

The last step in making your quilt sandwich is basting the layers together. You can thread baste, pin, or use basting spray.

To thread baste, you’ll hand baste large stitches with a needle and thread. Work from the center to the bottom, then to the top, and finally to the right and left. Fill in each quadrant working from the center out.

You can use safety pins or basting pins to pin the quilt sandwich together. Basting pins are curved, so they’re easier to use. Start pinning from the center out.

The stitches for hand basting or your basting pins should be about 4″ apart.

If you’re using basting spray, you can start from the middle or a corner. Smooth everything out as you go.

Making the Perfect Quilt Sandwich

When it comes to putting together your quilt, Ruthie’s is here to help. Our sewing and quilting classes offer expert advice and inspiration. We can help you find a new machine or repair the one you have.

You’re always welcome to stop by for some advice on how to make a quilt sandwich. Contact us today for all of your quilting needs. We look forward to seeing you!