I have been free motion quilting for just over a year now. I love it. I feel that my skills are growing with each quilt I sew up. I find free motion quilting extremely fun and really love the way it finishes my quilts. With that said, I have recently been more and more bugged by the pucker issues I always seem to have on the back of my quilts. You see, I was self taught to free motion quilt and have never really learned a technique to basting other than laying it all out on my floor and pinning it a bit.
So recently I decided it was time to figure it out. Hence the hours reading quilting blogs. (okay, most of that time was spent getting more quilting ideas, but some of it was actual basting research) After reading several posts on the best way to baste I figured I would try the most popular solution. Start by ironing everything super crisp, then tape the back of the quilt to the wood floor, then lay down your batting and quilt top, and then pin like crazy! At first I was a little reluctant as I figured it would take more time and I would have to kneel on the wood floor to pin but I figured it was research and so I gave it 100% and pinned every 5 inches. No cheating!
The result . . . One perfect quilted back with not one single pucker. I am so excited. I guess this means I will be pulling Jacob's big old construction knee pads out of the garage whenever I need to baste a quilt. It is worth it though to be able to say goodbye to puckers.
I will post pictures of the perfect back tomorrow. I want to put the binding on the quilt before I show it as I tried something new with the quilting. I'm not as excited about the quilting as the no puckering, but I did branch out and try something new, and that's something. Can't stay in the little stippling comfort zone forever :)