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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Borders, using line pattern. The easiest method.

Using line pattern in conjunction with the quilt's piecing is the easiest way to set up and stitch border designs. There is no need to turn the quilt using this method.
Making one repeat of the border pattern relate to the piecing means that it will always look good. It doesn’t matter if the piecing isn’t perfect and each repeat isn’t exactly the same length, your eye will not see the difference because the pattern fits with the piecing.

On this star quilt, one swag relates to one star block. 
I set this up by marking only the top border, because all the borders were the same size. I marked the border by tracing along the seam line between the border and the body of the quilt, then traveled out to the edge. I traced a quarter inch inside the raw edge to allow for a quarter inch binding. Marking the block at that quarter inch, meant that I could see that the pattern would not go into the binding area.

I chose add pattern, line pattern. 
On the line pattern screen, I touched 'catalog' and chose the pattern I wanted to use. 
I placed my needle over the seam line between the body of the quilt and the border at the left hand end. I then moved my machine to the seam line between the first two stars, and made sure my needle was at the seam line where the border meets the body of the quilt. I then looked up at my screen. 
The pattern was only 2 inches high - the line pattern default. That didn't fill my border so I touched 'height' and used my stylus to drag the image to a height I thought looked good inside the border block. Sometimes I tap, tap, tap the up arrow for fine tuning.

I always make a note of the height because if I don't finish the quilt in one day and shut down, iQ will not remember the height of my line pattern. Making a note allows me to continue with the same height without having to go through the set up process again, hoping I can re-create it exactly.

Once I was happy with the pattern, I touched ok, which set that first repeat in place. I then moved my needle to the next seam between the stars, and hit o.k. I continued in this way until the border was complete. This can be done very quickly.

Just a note: if the border varies in height because the piecing or cutting was not done with care, then I would mark the border block carefully and look at each repeat of the pattern. If the border is significantly narrower or wider, then I'd alter the height of each pattern repeat to make it fit inside the border more pleasingly.

Line patterns are continuously stitched so the top border will stitch as one pattern. 

If the quilt is very wide, then I start in the center of the quilt and set the line patterns in place going out to the left, then start in the center again and set them going out to the right. I'd then stitch them that way, in two sections, starting at the center. This controls the fabric movement. No matter how accurately you place a line pattern, when a very long border is stitched from left to right as one, the fabric will draw up and the patterns will not stitch exactly where you want them to be by the time the machine gets to the right hand side. It's worth having one more start and stop to get accuracy in the stitch out.

In the screenshot above, I have also come down each side for one repeat. This was as much as I could stitch before having to advance.
After advancing, I didn't need to mark the border blocks, I simply set the line pattern in place on each side for as many repeats as possible.

As you come down the side, look at the pattern on the screen - if it is facing the wrong way and appears to be in the body of the quilt rather than out in the border, touch flip Y.
If the pattern is directional, it may be necessary to flip X as well.

When placing the patterns in the bottom border, look at the image and flip X to turn them the right way up for that border (upside down).

Note: as you advance the quilt, these side patterns will not line up on the screen - do not be alarmed. I will often delete any patterns I've already stitched on the screen to avoid confusion. This also keeps the screen image large.

Now what to do with those empty corners? On this quilt, I popped in a small motif to fill that space.

If at all possible I will always chose to set up and stitch border patterns this way. 



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