Free Charity Quilt Longarm Services

For a limited time, Cate’s Sew Modern is looking for a limited number of charity quilt tops in need of quilting to help us on our longarm journey! Please read below for more information. If your quilt satisfies all requirements and you are able to bring your quilt in for services in the next four weeks, we would love to hear from you. Here are the specific stipulations, as well as guidelines for how to prepare for longarm services.

Does Your Quilt Qualify?

  • Has to be an official charity quilt – You are allowing us to do the quilting of your quilt sandwich, and we will return it to you ready for you to trim and add binding. You are responsible for attaching and sewing binding, as well as providing backing and batting when you drop it off.
  • We will pick the quilting stitch pattern, and it will be an all-over quilting design.
  • You can pick thread color and thread as long as it is made by Aurifil, Superior, Madeira or Mettler 40 or 50 weight.
  • Please: no rush jobs.
  • No quilt TOPS bigger than 108″ WIDE.

Guidelines on how to prep your quilt for our longarm:

Quilt Top

  • Make sure to square up your quilt top. The quilt should measure the same across the top and bottom; if you turn it, left and right.
  • Press your quilt so that it lays flat. Gently fold and place on a hanger to keep it from wrinkling.
  • Make sure the borders are not wavy, and that there are no ripples or puffy spots. These imperfections will cause folds, creases, and lumps as you quilt. This is the most common problem we see. We will check your quilt for these issues before accepting it.
  • Make sure seams are secure, and that there are no open gaps in the seams. The machine will get stuck in these areas.
  • For quilt tops that are borderless, stay-stitching a quarter inch from the edge of the quilt will keep seams from popping open.
  • Indicate the top of the quilt by marking it with tape or a safety pin with the word “top”, so we know which direction to quilt. Also, if the backing has a definite top and bottom, indicate those too.
  • Trim all loose threads!

Quilt Backing

  • The backing should be at 10″ – 12″ wider and longer than the quilt top. This means that there should be at least 4″ extra on each side. For example, a 60″x80″ quilt top should have a 68″x88″ backing
  • Press flat. Make sure that there are no hard creases. Failure to remove these wrinkles before-hand will make it virtually impossible to remove them after it’s quilted.
  • If you piece the backing, remove the selvage edges before sewing them together. Use 1/2″ seams, and press the seams open.
  • Square up the backing fabric on all sides.
  • Bedsheets are not suitable as a backing. The tight weave of bedsheets will cause tension problems with the machine.

Quilt Batting

  • Batting should be 8″-10″ longer and wider than the quilt top.

Want to help and get your quilt’s stitching finished? Contact us via email with a picture and info about the charity at

We reserve the right to turn down any quilt that has piecing issues that may interfere with our ability to complete it successfully. The number of quilts we accept will vary depending on the size of each donation we receive.

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