Sunday, February 22, 2009

I'm "BACK" with another question...

Hi everyone!!
I have another question for you...
What do you use for the back of your quilts?
(there should be a space in here, so I'm making one with words...this is how I'm beating blogger!! All the other spaces have the word "SPACE" in them, but I changed the color to white, so you can't see it and it works...yayy spaces between paragraphs)
When I first started quilting years ago, I used fabric that was in one of the blocks of the quilt for the back. I thought it should match. I also used a flannel top sheet for a throw quilt that I made for our family room. That seems to be the family favorite, because of the softness of the flannel (in my head I think they fight over it because of the wonderful design on the front of the quilt and the fabulous quilting, but as I said, that's only in my head.)
The past few years I have changed my thinking on the backing...I buy 100% cotton in white or muslin for the backing now. I feel that if I have to pay $8.00 - $9.00 a yard for fabric, it's going to be on the front!! Maybe because lately I have been making wall hangings, table runners and baby quilts and the backs don't seem that important...especially baby quilts where they are mostly on the floor for the baby to play on.
Just wondering what everyone else thinks about it. I'll be "BACK" to check your answers, because everyone always comes through for me on things like this. You are all the greatest!!
(space...hey it works)
There are no pictures of the backs of my quilts, because that would be extremely boring to look at a piece of plain fabric. So I thought I would show you where my husband (I need to find a catchy name for him like everyone else) and I go for a walk in the spring through the fall. It is off the coast of southern New England. Just beautiful, isn't it?? Click on picture to enlarge.

Hope you all have a great week ahead,


  1. Hello Karen!
    I beat the blogger space monster by adding a smiley face ☺ or heart ♥ in the space if blogger doesn't behave. I love your idea, though. Funny!

    On the backs of my quilts... I usually use muslin, too. I have been known for using leftover fabric from the front to make a racing stripe down the back. I'm cheap, so this is my way of making too-narrow muslin go further. Plus, it's pretty! I'll show you a picture of a couple of them on a future blog.
    Love the picture you posted. Beautiful scenery. I love New England! Did I tell you I grew up in New Brunswick and spent lots of time in Maine?

  2. hmmm i have been known to use sheets, and they are good, but i also wait and see if any of the "good" fabrics go on sale and then i buy a lot of it (like if it goes down 50 to 70% off.)i've bought $9 fabric at $4 a yard and i usually get like 5 yards (if they have it) but with the smaller pieces i piece them together and make a scappy back...still with $4 dollar nice fabrics.

  3. For quilt backs - if I spent a lot on the fabric for the front and/or I'm giving it for a gift, I will try to give a bed/snuggle quilt the same quality backing. For wall hangings, definitely muslin or sale fabric.
    Love the photo of New England coast. It looks much better to me today than my frozen lake - although the cross country skiing was great this afternoon.

  4. I use whatever I can find out on sale..
    It is hard to use expensive beautiful fabric on the back..
    Though I do like a patterned fabric on the back so that the quilting stitches don't show up too much!
    julia ♥

  5. When I finished my 1984 quilt, I used a plain burgundy fabric because a)it was cheaper and b) I couldn't find the same fabric because the quilt top was 23 years old the. (Full story on my blog). I made the decision after it was done that I'd never do that again...use a plain or cheaper fabric, i.e. This is only my opinion remember, but I think that if I'm investing the time, effort and money on the top, then the back should get the same attention.

    There's a gal in my guild who makes the most awesome quilt backs. She sews together 10" squares of scrap fabric til she has enough for a backing, She said she got the idea from Every quilt that I've seen of hers is wonderful and I'm always more anxious to see what she's done with the back than the front. I'm going to try this with my next quilt. Most of her quilts have a scrappy look as that's what she likes but her backs are as interesting as the fronts. I've often told her that her quilts are reversible.

    Karen, that scene is like a picture postcard. Truly beautiful!

    Love the way you dealth with the spacing. You beat blogger! Now can you tell me how you frame your photos? I love that look.

    Since then, I

  6. I've been using the leftover fabrics from the front of the quilt to piece a fun back!

  7. I, too, patch scraps together for backs or use primarily sale fabric. I do like the backs to "match" the front since most of my quilts are bed quilts and both sides are frequently seen.

  8. Love the New England picture!
    I noticed you are a follower of my blog! I just wanted to say hello!
    I am impressed that you quilter. I use my glue gun-for things most people would sew...but YOU impress me!

  9. Hi Karen,
    I use all different fabrics, from some that I used in the quilt to fabric that take my colors from to start the quilt. When I had the shop, not just a web site, I had a lady come in to teach applique and she brought her quilts in. All of them had beautiful backs on them. She would pick a fabric with the colors she liked and not even use it in the quilt, but built her quilt from the colors. I always thought that was a good idea.
    Great picture and idea to get the spacing.
    Keep Stitchen'

  10. Is that picture real ? Oh my gosh. Can I come visit ? ;o) ooxx`jod

  11. P.S. I've been looking for plain colored sheets in Thrift Stores. I got some brand new still in package 100% cotton white ones for $1 a piece the other day. Although I would prefer a print on the back, doesn't show quilting mistakes like plain white.

  12. Hi! I'm new to your blog.

    If it's going to be seen a lot - like a quilt to throw on a couch or a kid's bed, I use fabric that matches the front. If it goes on the wall or a table runner, I use cheap and/or ugly stuff.

    I shop sales and ebay a lot once I know what kind of fabrics I need.

  13. I like to use 100% cotton fabric and sometimes flannel, it is so soft and nice! There is a quilt I have to finish as a gift and then I'll try something new, I'll use fleece and no batting at all. Let's see the results!!!

  14. There is a quilt shop near my home and they have flat folds of quilt fabric for $2.99 a yard. I buy that in something that doesn't look too hideous with the front. I just made one for my grandson with flannel on the back and I really like how that felt.

  15. Hi Karen!
    I usually use some sort of stash yardage for the backs of wall hangings and such- just can't see spending so much time on a quilt to just put muslin on the back-even if no one sees it. On baby quilts I usually put flannel to be soft for them. Other quilts I tend to buy some yardage that may match the binding but not necesarily the front fabs just for interest. I have also pieced my backing before to also add interest but use fabric up from the front or my stash! Hope this helps!

  16. I can't give you any ideas since I'm just starting out with quilting...but, I'm storing all the backing tips.
    I love the picture. I'm sure there are a few lighthouses in your area.

  17. I love how you beat blogger! I worked on my last posting for half an hour trying to make one space. I ended up putting in a little scroll work. My background is green, must see if I can find that colour to do what you do.

    As for backing a quilt. I like patterned fabric best. I use leftovers from the quilt top or I purchase something from the 50-75% off table at my local quilt shop. I do use solids on the back of wall hangings and tabletoppers.

  18. I use whatever is on sale either at JoAnn or my local quilt store. My local quilt store has a "got your back" special once a month. If you bring your quilt top with you on that day, they give you 30% off the cost of the backing fabric. So some times take advantage of this special. Great question!

  19. I like to use something that will match the front. Always from the clearance or sale rack. I also choose a print that will be kind to the machine quilter. I use sheets for tied quilts, never for a machine quilter. The weave is too tight. No muslin for me either. If I spend that much time and $$ on the top, I’m putting something good looking on the back.

  20. I have for the longest time matched fabric from the front to the back. Now that I am trying to use up my stash, I have been piecing my backs and really like the look of the scrappy back, plus taking a bite out of the quilt closet!!! Nice to find your blog from Janes Fabrics!!

  21. I'm using up old soft flannel cot sheets. The quilts I'm making at trhe moment are for on beds - and the children's bedding gets washed a lot so no point it being expensive.

    I had an idea for getting blogger to give you a space. I don't know if it will work but it might be worth a try. Have you tried putting the html tag for a line break in?

  22. Ha ha!
    It thought I wanted to put a line break in and so hasn't shown you the code. Umm, try typing these symbols <> but with br between them.

  23. Hi, first time here. A great blog you have and I'll come again. I use sheets from friends, and goodwill, wherever I can find them.
    I do use fabrics that are on sale for excellent prices too.

  24. I like to used leftovers and stuff in my stash I know that I will never use anywhere else.
    However I just found this lady's blog and the backs of her quilts are quite something. Have a peek

  25. I use my 40-50% off coupons from Joanns and buy the wildest fabric I can. I like the backs to be a surprise, something unexpected. I will also buy backing fabric at Walmart and sometimes my Hobby Lobby will have discounted fabric $1 a yard. I personally don't care what the backs look like but it is fun to have that bit of unexpected to make you smile.

  26. I've been having fun looking at blogs tonight, and saw this....I use anything from flannel if it's for a cold climate, to scraps to make the back just as fun as the I've done a row of hearts, bows, the recipients name, stuff like that with scraps.


Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment...I just love hearing from you!

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