Mounting A Vintage Top: Illustrated Technique


(Click on the image to enlarge)

Diana asked me to further explain what I meant about running mounting stitches through the seam allowances. For some reason my scanner isn’t working, so instead of the drawing I created, you’ll have to live with my lousy powerpoint drawing skills. (Hey, I retired ESPECIALLY so that I wouldn’t have to do any more powerpoint presentations — and that was when I had a stable of junior officers to figure this stuff out for me.)

After assembling your mount (as generally described in my earlier post), you’ll want to run a grid of stitches to secure the quilt top to the batting and backing. For a quilt that will experience frequent handling or other stress, a grid of stitches that runs horizontally and vertically every two inches is the most conservative approach. A quilt that will lay flat on a bed, in contrast, can get by with wider margins.

The stitch you will use is a pick stitch. A pick stitch is a running hand stitch that takes up only a few threads at a time on the visible surface. Imagine that you were quilting twelve stitches to the inch; the length of one of those stitches is about the size that your pick stitch should be.

Bury a quilter’s knot in the batting and then run your thread through a seam allowance (NOT through the surface) and then down through the backing with a “pick” stitch. Lift the needle back through the batting and then insert the needle through the patchwork seam allowance, and then down for another pick stitch.

If there is not a seam allowance to go through, or if you’re struggling too much to work your needle through a seam allowance, then take a pick stitch on the surface of the quilt. One stitch every two inches places far less stress on your fragile top than a quilting stitch.

Your completed mount will not be as secure as a quilted top, but will be stable enough to display.

Clear as mud?

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