Quilt Preparation Tips



  • There are three layers to your quilt, the quilt top, the batting, and the back.  These three layers will be loaded on the longarm independently so please don't pin or baste your layers together.


Quilt Back

  • Always trim your salvages before sewing your back together.  Use 5/8" seams and press.
  • Sides should be straight.  Ripping as opposed to cutting fabric will give you a straigher edge.
  • If you decide to make your backing fun with piece work, don't be symmetrical with it, or have a center monogram, or a border, it will be "off" in the final product. 
  • Backing should be squared.  This ensures the quilt loads on the longarm straight.
  • Thread used for the top will be the same for the back, otherwise you get the appearance of specks on the quilt.  So, keep in mind, if you don't want thread with a contrast on the back pick a fabric that matches the front.
  • Always make your quilt back four to six inches larger than the front on all sides .  I will not be able to center your quilt top if the back is the same size as the front.



  • If you have a specific batting you want to use please provide that for me, otherwise I have Hobbs 80/20 blend that I can provide for you.
  • Your batting should be the same size as the quilt back, which is always 4-6 inches larger then the quilt front in both directions.


Quilt Front

  • Make sure your quilt lies flat.  If there are ripples or puffiness in the quilt top, the piece may not quilt flat.
  • Make sure your border does not have waves or ripples.  Make sure your quilt top is squared, meaning that the measurements are the same on both ends and in the middle.
  • Press all seams and remove any loose threads from the back of the quilt top, otherwise you will be able to see these threads, especially if it's a light color.
  • If you have seams on the outer edges of your quilt top, please baste 1/8" around the edges or place a two to three inch border around the edges.  This prevents the seams from coming apart when put on the longarm.   The advantages of basting or putting on a border on seam edges are that it stabilizes the quilt, secures the border seams, and allows me to quilt off the edge.
  • Please don't put embellishments or have flaps on your quilt top.
  • If your quilt has a top and bottom please put a piece of masking tape or a pin for the top.



  • Most quilters do their own binding, however if you wish me to do that for you please provide one yard of fabric.  I will machine sew the binding to the front and hand sew to the back with mitered corners.   

I’ve had the privilege of Margaret machine quilting 4 large quilts for me in the last few years. Every quilt has been unique and a piece of art work. Her attention to detail is phenomenal and anyone who sees them has been impressed. Last fall I entered one of these quilts in the Ladies of the Lake Quilt Show and received First Place and Judges Choice in it’s category.
— Ellen Morris
Margaret quilts beautifully and intuitively. I’m so glad that I brought my quilts to her.
— Ginny Leber