I had actually taken this class a year ago when I was still learning the basics of loading a quilt. At that time, I seriously doubted I would ever have square backs or even truly understand how to load a quilt. This time, I realized exactly where I am going wrong. Here are the basic steps in making sure quilts are square:
1. Make sure roller bars are parallel (I don’t think mine are).
2. Make sure table is level.
3. Make sure leaders are square and even. If they’re not, run a line of stitching (using the channel lock) along the leaders and re-hem them. (I need to check this.)
4. Make sure your center points on each roller are the same. Do this with a 90 degree ruler.
5. Make sure your backing is square.
6. Load the quilt top as squarely as possible. This may require using border seams instead of the quilt’s edge as a guide. Also, ease in fullness to avoid getting dog-ears at the bottom of your quilt.
7. Baste the top and sides of the quilt BEFORE using the side clamps. Renee recommends Red-E-Edge clips to put even pressure on the bottom quilt fabric.
8. As you quilt, continue to measure the quilt width to ensure it’s square.
Renae demonstrated the Red Snapper Leaders and the Red-E-Edge side clamps. I bought a set and these are available from her website:
Renae is a high energy, engaging teacher. Her classes are jam-packed with information. She is extremely knowledgeable on all brands of machines — when making sure rollers are square, for example, she knew the nuances of all the big machines. I would highly recommend any of Renae’s classes. This class, for sure, gave me a number of important takeaways that will make me a better quilter.