Category Archives: Quilt hanging

Pacific West Quilt Show 2013

Last week I volunteered at the Pacific West Quilt Show for the first time.  I would encourage all of you to volunteer at a major quilt show at least once.  I certainly appreciated the show more for having seen the effort involved.  Many of our well known local quilt instructors and authors were in attendance.  I  was impressed that these ladies, so busy  teaching classes, writing books, etc., would contribute so much time to the show.

I helped hang the quilts in the main exhibition hall on Thursday. Heidi Lund  was in charge of the quilt hanging and maintained amazing calm considering the chaos.  I took a wonderful class from Heidi a few years ago.  She is a real master with thread, and some of you may have seen her spectacular garments in wearable art shows.  In the morning I worked with Maggie Ball (www.dragonflyquilts.com   ) and another quilter named Val whose last name I didn’t learn.  They were a pleasure to work with and had hung the quilts before, so we made lots of progress.  Seeing the quilts up close and personal during the hanging (especially the backs of the quilts, mostly not visible during the actual show) helped us appreciate the incredible skills of the quilt makers.

On Friday morning I was at the volunteer desk, checking in the many volunteers working the show.  Susan Purney-Mark was in charge and did a great job directing the volunteers and solving the many small problems that came up.  Susan had taught a class the day before and said she volunteers for the duration of the show every year.  In the few quiet moments, she graciously offered advice about book publishing, blogs, etc.  I really enjoyed our conversation.  Check out Susan’s website,  ( http://www.susanpm.com  )  and her blog (www.susanpm.blogspot.com ) for some really interesting info on fabric painting, stenciling, coming up with original quilt designs, etc.

I am not sure if there are restrictions about publishing photos of other quilters work here, so I will include a couple of photos of my quilts hanging in the show and no others.  There were as usual many spectacular quilts.  I am always astounded by the amazing skill and patience shown by the makers of the winning quilts.  I expect there will be photos of the winning quilts available online fairly soon.

Fireballs Quilt at the Pacific West Quilt Show 2013

Fireballs Quilt at the Pacific West Quilt Show 2013

Leaves In The Wind at PWQS
Leaves In The Wind at the Pacific West Quilt Show 2013

My quilts from the show arrived back at my house on Tuesday about noon, so the quilt return process was conducted with the same efficiency as the rest of the show.  The judge’s comments on my quilts were included with the returned quilts and were both encouraging and helpful.  Congratulations to show director Elizabeth Spannring (www.plaidcat.com) and the rest of the team for all their great work!

Quilt Stick Quiver

Well, most of you probably don’t need one of these, but I did so I am going to describe how I made it.

First, why would you need one?  I make a lot of art quilts.  They have to be hung on the wall.  In an earlier post, I described how to make simple quilt hanging sticks.  Charlie Petersen and I have now had two shows of our quilts at the Uptown Dental Clinic in Port Townsend.  This last time we hung about 40 quilts.  That requires a lot of sticks – at least one per quilt.  For my big quilts, I put a hanging sleeve at the bottom of the quilts also and insert a stick there.  The quilts look so much better when the bottom edge isn’t waving around all over the place.  (They look better when the sides don’t wave either.   Guess you could put pockets on the sides (like a hanging sleeve, but with the bottom end closed) and use sticks there too; I haven’t ever gone that far).  Charlie and I just stick the sides down where needed with blue painter’s tape hidden underneath and call it good.

So back to the quiver.   After we took down the show last week, Charlie and I were struggling with all those sticks.  I decided to make a couple of quivers (one short, one long) to hold the sticks both for storage at home and for easy transport to a show.  I bought some upholstery fabric for the outside, a coordinating fabric for the lining, and some stiff fusible interfacing (what you would use for any bag where you wanted the sides to stand up).

Cutting instructions.  The quiver fabric needs to be about 16 inches wide.  The length can vary.  I made two, one 24 inches long for short sticks, and one 40 inches long for long sticks.  Cut a rectangle of the outer quiver fabric 16 inches by the desired length, and a rectangle of the lining fabric the same width and 4 inches longer that the outer fabric.  Also cut a long strip (4 inches wide by 20-35 inches long, depending upon the length of your quiver) of the outer fabric for the strap.  And cut a rectangle of the fusible interfacing one inch smaller in each dimension than the outer fabric (for example, outer fabric 16 by 24 inches; interfacing 15 by 23 inches).

Fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of the outer fabric, leaving a half inch of fabric exposed all around.  The photo below shows the outer fabric with interfacing, and the lining fabric.

Outer fabric rectangle with interfacing and lining rectangle

Outer fabric rectangle with interfacing and lining rectangle

Make the strap by pressing a ½ inch hem on each long side toward the wrong side of fabric as shown below.

Fold and press 1/2 inch hem on each side of strap

Fold and press 1/2 inch hem on each side of strap

Then fold the entire strip in half lengthways with the side hems inside and the right side out. Sew along the open edge as shown below.  Don’t worry about finishing the ends, since they will be sewn into the seam of the quiver.

Fold the strap in half and stitch the open edge

Fold the strap in half and stitch the open edge

Sew the lining fabric to the outer fabric, right sides together end to end , with a ½ inch seam.  This will look as shown below.

Sew outer and lining pieces together end to end

Sew outer and lining pieces together end to end

Pin the strap to the quiver outer fabric along one edge.  The upper end of the strap should be about 3 inches from the outer fabric/lining joining seam. Make the strap perpendicular to the raw edge at the top and either perpendicular or at an angle at the other strap end about 12-20 inches lower.  Leave enough of a loop in the strap so it will be comfortable to sling over your shoulder for carrying.  You want the strap to be mostly in the upper half of the quiver.  Machine baste both ends of the strap in place.

Fold the quiver in half the long way, right sides together.  Because the fusible interfacing is so stiff, you will have to force a fold in it. Tuck the strap inside so it won’t get caught in the stitching. Sew the outer fabric end closed and sew the long edge closed, but leave the lining end open for turning as shown below.  Reinforce the seam over the straps with an extra line of stitching.

Fold in half and sew along the outer fabric narrow end and all along the long side.  Leave lining end open.

Fold in half and sew along the outer fabric narrow end and all along the long side. Leave lining end open.

Open  the bottom out and sew across to make a couple of “ears” as shown below.  The seam to make each ear will be about 3 inches long, so the bag will be roughly circular at the bottom.

Round out the bottom of the quiver by sewing two "ears" as shown.

Round out the bottom of the quiver by sewing two “ears” as shown.

Turn the bag right side out through the opening in the lining.  This is a little tough because of the stiff interfacing.  I managed this with my 40 inch long quiver, but I wouldn’t want to try one much longer than that.  The shorter quiver was a lot easier to turn.  The right side out bag, with lining still outside, is shown below.

Quiver turned right side out

Quiver turned right side out

Fold under ½ inch of the raw edge at the end of the lining and sew across to close the opening.  Then push the lining down into the quiver.  Use a stick or round rod to get it to the bottom.  Roll the excess lining length over the top of the quiver to form a cuff.  Sew down the edge of the cuff as shown below.

Quiver top cuff seam

Quiver top cuff seam

Your quiver is complete:

A completed quilt stick quiver

A completed quilt stick quiver

Hanging Your Quilts – Quick and Easy

Last Friday my friend Charlie and I hung nearly 40 quilts in about 4 hours, with help from Charlie’s friend Susan. Today I am describing the materials we used to hang our quilts without spending too much time or money.
1. For little quilts ( up to about 15 inches wide) or for special applications such as hanging a larger quilt on a curved wall, one option is to use rings. Small curtain rings, rings intended for construction of roman shades, or split rings that are sold near the keys in your local hardware store will work. Just find smooth rings about ½ to ¾ inch in diameter, sew them to the top back of your quilt about 5/8 to 1 inch below the top. Using a needle and strong thread, go around the ring and through the back of the quilt and batting only. Go around several times so the connection is strong enough to support the weight of the quilt. Add more rings along the top of the quilt as needed until the top edge of the quilt doesn’t sag.
These rings will hang from 1 ½ inch long finish nails that you pound into the wall leaving about 3/8 inch of the nail protruding out.
2. For medium size quilts (up to about 40 inches wide) use a hanging sleeve and stick at the top of the quilt. For large size quilts (48 inches or wider), the quilt will hang better if you use hanging sleeves and sticks at both top and bottom.
3. For a good description of how to make a hanging sleeve, go to http://moonlightingquilts.wordpress.com/2012/04/05/in-defense-of-the-proper-quilt-sleeve-and-how-to-make-it-in-6-easy-steps/. Make the sleeves at least 4 inches narrower than the width of your quilt. (NOTE:  For hanging on rods or poles at a quilt competition, you may want to make the sleeves nearly the same width as your quilt.  But for use of sticks as described here, you need clearance for the end of the stick and the holes for the nails).
4. Purchase the sticks at your local lumber yard or home improvement center. Go to the moulding (or molding, spelling is not consistent) department and ask for unfinished hemlock moulding. Other woods will also work, but hemlock is the most commonly available in the U.S. The kind you want is called either screen mould (approx 3/16 inch thick by ¾ inch wide by 8 feet long) or door stop (approx 5/16 inch thick by 1 3/16 inch wide by 8 feet long, or 7/16 inch thick by 1 3/8 inch wide by 8 feet long).
The screen mould size should be sufficient for small and medium sized quilts. Use the door stop mould for the top of larger quilts. Screen mould works for the bottom of large quilts. If you cannot find the door stop mould, you can substitute lattice which comes ¼ inch thick by 1 1/8 inch wide by 8 feet and also in larger sizes. The disadvantage of the lattice is that the corners are not rounded, so you are more likely to get slivers in yourself or your quilt unless you sand down the corners carefully.
5. Measure the width of your quilt and cut the stick about 1 ½ inches shorter than the quilt width.
6. Mark a location about ½ inch in from each end in the center. Drill a 1/8 inch diameter hole at each mark. The diameter is not critical, it just needs to let the nail pass through easily. Remember that you need some flexibility in the hole size in case your nails go into the wall a little crooked.

Quilt stick drawing Apr 16 2013
7. Now you should have a finished top stick with two holes near the ends.

quilt hanging stick end with hole Apr 16 2013

One end of the stick will look like this photo. Break off any little bits of wood around the hole and sand it if necessary.  The  sticks for the quilt bottom look the same but don’t need any holes at the end.
8. Pound one of the nails into the wall at the height you like. Hang the stick on the nail from one end through the hole. Hold the stick out horizontally by measuring down from the ceiling or use a level. With a pencil, mark the location of the second hole. Put a nail at the mark. Test the stick to ensure the holes slip smoothly over both nails.
9. Remove the stick from the nails, slip it into the top hanging sleeve of your quilt, and hang the quilt and stick back on the nails.  Smooth the top edge  of the quilt.  If you are hanging a large quilt, now is the time to insert the stick in the bottom sleeve.

10. Stand back and admire your quilt!

© 2013 by Shirley Sandoz and Mystery Bay Quilt Design.  All rights reserved.