How to Spray Baste a Quilt

How to Spray Baste a Quilt

I flip flop between spray basting and pin basting, but lately I’ve been reaching for a can of spray more often than not!  

Below is a simple how to for spray basting, including 15 headless photos of me.  ;)

Spray Basting Tutorial

I’ve used multiple types of fabric adhesive and 505 is my favorite.  It’s a bit more expensive, so when I have a good coupon I get a couple of cans.  One of the smaller cans lasts me through 2, maybe 3 throw size quilts, the larger 12 ounce can maybe double that.  I’d say that the cost is the biggest downside to spray basting.

As for the fumes…the 505 doesn’t seem as bad as other brands, but it still has a strong odor.  Open windows and doors, and keep kids and crawling babies in red striped pajamas out of the room.  When I remember I’ll even wear one of my dental masks, but you probably don’t need it with good ventilation.   

Spray Basting Tutorial

The first step is to tape your backing to the floor so it’s taut but not stretched.  If you are working with a baby quilt, you can probably do this on a table.  Next lay your batting over the backing and smooth it out.  On one end, fold up the batting up nicely until you reach the quilt center. 

Spray Basting Tutorial

Spray the batting on the fold until it’s well covered, holding the can 8″ or so from the batting.  Fold and pull the section of batting back down onto the backing and smooth it out.  You can go back and smooth it out more later.  

Spray Basting Tutorial

Repeat with the next fold, and the next, until you have basted them all to the backing.  Basically you are just spraying and smoothing out sections.  Smooth out that side of the batting and press it down well so it sticks to the backing. 

Spray Basting Tutorial

Repeat on the other end, folding the batting up until you reach where you already basted.  

Spray Basting Tutorial

Spray Basting Tutorial

Lay your quilt top on the batting and smooth it out well.  

Spray Basting Tutorial

Neatly fold up one end as you did with the batting.  Spray the batting where you will fold down the quilt top.  Always spray the batting!  

Spray Basting Tutorial

Fold down the section of quilt top, press it down and smooth it out, and repeat.  Spray the batting and fold down the quilt in sections. 

Spray Basting Tutorial

Spray Basting Tutorial

Smooth out the quilt top and get out any wrinkles.  If you get a wrinkle you can gently pull up the quilt top and get it out. 

Spray Basting Tutorial

Repeat on the other end of the quilt top. 

Spray Basting Tutorial

When you are all done and the layers are well basted, trim the edges but leave 2-3″ (or just leave it as is).  I also like to do a quick basting stitch with my machine around the edges.  It makes it much easier to quilt the edges when you can hold onto the already sewn or pinned edges.  Sometimes I just do this on the ends as I’m quilting. 

Spray Basting Tutorial

Roll it up along the short ends and you are ready to get quilting!  

I don’t notice over spray on the floors around the quilt with the 505, partly because I spray fairly close to the quilt. If you notice it, just take a rag or a mop and go over the area with water. 

Spray Basting Tutorial

Also, how fun is this shirt from Maker Valley?!!  I ordered this last week and I’m going to keep wearing it until my family notices. 

Maker Valley Sewing T-Shirt

Here are some other Pros and Cons to spray basting: 

Pros:  Fast…this process takes me maybe 10 minutes or less.  No pinning…especially if you have pain in your hands or wrists.  I think I get better results when I spray baste and less crinkles on the back, but I also pin baste a lot and don’t have too many issues.  Works great with minky and flannel backings, although if it’s a thicker backing I will also do double duty and add some pins. 

Cons: Cost, fumes, over-spray, and even though I’ve never noticed it…you might find it gums up your needle a bit.  Crawling around on your knees….although I should add that I usually wear my husband’s ugly construction knee pads and it makes this job way easier! 

The quilt top I’m basting in the photos is made from this free pattern in the Throw size (click here). 

Got any other basting tips I missed?  I feel like there is something I missed.  Leave it in the comments below and happy basting…if there is such a thing!  ;)



113 Responses to How to Spray Baste a Quilt

  1. Veronica E. April 13, 2017 at 10:54 am #

    What a cute little helper you have!! I’m quilting a big (for me!) quilt at 63″x69″ and I felt spraying basting would be too difficult for that size quilt. Do you ever spray baste anything that big? I think a big con of pin basting is losing your free motion quilting rhythm to take out the pins. I also take out pins too close to the foot/needle, so I’m twisting the pins a bit to get them out, and probably increasing the size of the holes they make in my quilt.

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 4:16 pm #

      I do that too! Wait until the last minute to take out pins and then they are so hard to get out under my presser foot! ;) A large quilt I would probably do both…spray lightly and then also put some pins in it…just because you are going to be quilting it for awhile and moving it around a lot under the machine and smooshing it through. I’m always an over-baster though!

    • Helen K May 16, 2017 at 10:36 am #

      Hi I’ve been spray basting for years and always use 505 , it definitely seems to have less fumes but I try to use my outdoor table , covered first with an old sheet, no need to worry about ‘over spray’. I then use a long cardboard roll/ tube , these are from free from curtain fabric shops so can be a really good length, to roll up the top ( or backing) completely. Spray across the full width a bit a bit at a time and unroll , this gives you chance to achieve a smooth finish and correct any imperfections. Always works for me.

  2. Kristal Jacobson April 13, 2017 at 11:39 am #

    I’ve read that some quilters iron their spray basted quilts to “fuse” them together. I’m curious if this is necessary?

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 4:16 pm #

      I’ve tried this! I didn’t notice any difference…I think just making sure to press the layers together nicely makes a big difference.

      • Ellen in North Florida October 3, 2017 at 7:24 am #

        I have been ironing after spray basting since I heard Jacquie Gering recommend this step. I think it helps a lot, especially since it creates a really flat surface to begin quilting.

      • Allison October 11, 2017 at 3:08 pm #

        I always forget to do this but I do think it makes it nice and flat and improves the bond! Thanks for sharing!

  3. CindyD April 13, 2017 at 12:04 pm #

    Sandwiching a quilt is my least favorite part of the whole process. I haven’t tried this before because I didn’t think my knees could take it. But only 10 minutes sounds worth it – maybe I will kluge together some knee pads when I do!

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 4:17 pm #

      I should have mentioned I usually wear my husbands ugly construction knee pads when I do this…I leave them handy just for basting on the floor! They make this job 100 times better!

    • Jackie April 14, 2017 at 4:02 pm #

      I always spray baste my quilts usually about 60″ square. I lay the quilt out on my bed, wadding down first then lay on backing, turn over and add quilt top. I walk around the bed to reach each side easily and no sore knees.

      • Allison April 14, 2017 at 4:47 pm #

        I might have to try this next time!

  4. jennifer ziehl vacca April 13, 2017 at 2:07 pm #

    Ok I’m sold! Thanks for a great tutorial Allison, the next quilt will be spray basted! I hate the pins anyways lol.

  5. Deb Worthman April 13, 2017 at 2:15 pm #

    For small quilts, I take it one step further…When the quilt is sandwiched where I want it, I will take my iron and press. This way if there is a spot that didn’t get fused down completely, the iron will completely fuse and the layers won’t move at all. It’s great with minky.

    • Helen April 17, 2017 at 12:57 pm #

      Deb, do you find that pressing your spray-basted quilt presses out the “bumps” in your minky? I have “pressed my minky bumps away” a couple of times.

      • Allison April 28, 2017 at 3:26 pm #

        Nope I haven’t…but maybe I just haven’t noticed, I also pin with Minky just for extra security, but not as many pins.

      • Norma Bennett May 25, 2020 at 6:32 am #

        Does spraying interfere with the stitching. I have seen a big difference such as skipping stitches and too tight stitching. Problem I have never had before.

  6. Maureen April 13, 2017 at 2:25 pm #

    Does this change the feel of the quilt? (stiffen it?)

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 4:18 pm #

      Maybe slightly? But after quilting I can’t tell any difference. If it’s a quilt to be used right away I always wash it first to get any spray out…but if it’s just for decor or to give away I don’t worry about it.

  7. Tami April 13, 2017 at 3:24 pm #

    I spray baste the batting to the backing, then iron it to fuse it and smooth out wrinkles. Then I spray baste the top onto the batting/backing layers and iron again. I’ve done that with quilts up to 77″ by 90″ or so with good results. I should add that I iron it on the ironing board, not the floor. The adhesive washes out so it doesn’t change the feel of the finished quilt. I’ll have to try taping the backing to the floor and doing all three at once.

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 4:20 pm #

      I should probably do that…I’ve tried ironing it and I didn’t notice a difference…maybe I should try again!

  8. Mary April 13, 2017 at 4:04 pm #

    This is probably a silly question, but why should you spray the batting and not the quilt? Is it because of the seams on the quilt top and bottom?

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 4:19 pm #

      I’m honestly not sure…but my guess is that the cotton absorbs the spray and gets wet maybe? It does work better when you spray the batting…and that’s what the directions say so I’m stickin’ with it!

      • Laura April 17, 2017 at 10:08 am #

        I spray both quilt top/back and batting, and haven’t had a problem. I don’t spray super-heavily, though. Seems to keep the sandwich more secure.

  9. Vicki April 13, 2017 at 4:10 pm #

    You forgot to mention wearing dark pants and socks so the batting fluff that gets stuck to your hands, knees, and feet as you crawl around shows up really well! ;). I love spray basting and cannot go back to pins … Each time I baste, I think to myself, “I should really save a couple bucks right now and pin … Or I could be done basting in ten minutes and start quilting this mamajama that much sooner!”

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 4:21 pm #

      Lol I am literally covered in threads and “fluff” all the time…it’s a joke in our house!

  10. Chris K. April 13, 2017 at 5:46 pm #

    I like to leave the sandwich to “dry” after spray basting. Seems like the bond is better if I wait awhile. That might just be my imagination. I like June Tailor better than 505; it seems to stick a lot better. I’ve sprayed the fabric instead of the batting and it didn’t seem to make any difference.

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 9:13 pm #

      I’ll have to try the June Tailor…I think that might be one I haven’t tried! Good tip letting it dry a bit!

      • Debbie Frio April 14, 2017 at 3:40 am #

        And the June Tailor is cheaper at Joann Fabrics than on Amazon!! I always buy multiple cans when they’re having sales. :-)

      • Eliane April 14, 2017 at 9:36 am #

        I haven’t tried 505 but I love the June Tailor spray. Really does a good job. I also let mine sit for a while before I move it to start quilting.

  11. Diana w April 13, 2017 at 6:21 pm #

    Fabulous post! I only spray baste since pins take way too much time. I usually do mine on my big board and iron the quilt to insure no wrinkles. I am not sure I can do the floor crawling but maybe I will give it a try. I do always just spray the batting never the quilt or backing, I am not sure why but it works and that is all that matters, right! I have used both 505 and June Taylor brand and cannot tell any difference except I think the June Taylor brand has a few more ounces in the bottle and I hate to run out mid quilt basting …

    • GAIL C. COSENS June 29, 2020 at 8:18 pm #

      I had to take a quilt apart after I had spray basted w/ 505 not realizing that it can’t be washed out, but needs to be dry-cleaned…I was disappointed that the chemicals in the spray will not be washed out of my baby quilts

  12. Lia Domingues April 13, 2017 at 6:26 pm #

    Great tuto…
    I usually spray the fabric, not the batting, because the batting “sucks” the adhesive.

  13. Annette Ackley April 13, 2017 at 6:31 pm #

    Lately, I have used pins. I have used the spray for basting. It works well for me. I also like using it on table runners when I’m quilting with my walking foot or doing the free motion quilting. I don’t have to stop and take out pins. Good tutorial!!!

  14. Mary D April 13, 2017 at 7:03 pm #

    I guess I am the only one who knees ache just looking at you crawl around on a hardwood floor bare-kneed. I used knee pads or a foam pad when I used the floor to pin baste. Now I will a designated wall to baste so I won’t need to grace the floor with my knees. I’m not sure my asthma will work well with spray basting so I glue baste more often and pin baste when needed..

    • Allison April 13, 2017 at 9:15 pm #

      Usually I use knee pads…my husbands ugly construction knee pads that are super heavy duty!

    • Melissa Lewis Reilly April 14, 2017 at 6:59 am #

      Exactly how I was feeling looking at the pics! Haha. I’m far older than Allison, and also have knee injuries from athletic abuse as a young adult…. nevertheless, I persevere with knee pads as she suggests. And then drink.

    • darlene April 15, 2017 at 12:07 pm #

      no, you are not the only one … my knees hurt when they hear the words, *crawl on the floor* … nooooo … i agree … how to do a large one stymies me … i don’t have a huge kitchen table anymore and where to do it? i’m sure i’ll figure it out but it keeps my larger quilts folded in boxes …. hmmmmm … thanks for the great tut … i. hate. pin. basting. ….

      • Allison April 15, 2017 at 8:24 pm #

        Another person said she spray bastes on her bed! I’m going to try it…I have a nice flat firm King size and I think it would work great to tape/pin the backing down and spray baste on it!

      • aristotleface April 19, 2017 at 8:51 pm #

        I’ve spray basted a king sized quilt on my kitchen floor before, and it is not a large kitchen floor. i did move all the furniture out of the way first, but the trick was to use a giant dowel (purchased at home depot JUST for this purpose) to roll the layers up, then onto each other, and then fold up the sandwich as it was basted. like a giant rolling pin.
        i have never tried using a bed, and honestly that sounds genius.

      • Stephanie May 5, 2017 at 3:27 pm #

        If you search on YouTube for spray basting you’ll see a vid for using a wall to spray baste!!!!

  15. Dana B April 13, 2017 at 9:52 pm #

    I use my kitchen island to spray baste and iron. I’ve made an “ironing board” cover for the island from the reflective material, batting, elastic, and outdoor fabric. Saves the knees. I’ve done up to king size quilts with the spray and ironing. I make sure to make and smooth out my sandwich and then peel back either the top or the bottom layer to spray and then iron. Only thing to watch out for is making sure that both the top and bottom are square with each other.

    • Pam Hotle October 5, 2018 at 9:52 pm #

      How do you make sure they are square? Mine are always crooked and I don’t know how to do otherwise.

      • Allison October 7, 2018 at 4:44 pm #

        Hi Pam! Do you mean the quilt top is crooked? Or the quilt and back are crooked and don’t line up?

  16. margiestitcher April 13, 2017 at 9:52 pm #

    you have made it sound easy if only I could get down on the floor and back up again of course! and that I had the floor space too. This is the worst part of quilt making for me, I let the flimsies pile up must get a few done, use the kitchen table that extends but what a struggle, I tack finding that the most successful way to tackle the job

  17. Susan Lindh April 13, 2017 at 11:13 pm #

    After you tape down the quilt top ( my dining room floor) and cover with batting and backing…
    Use 2 rods (a broom stick or fabric tube) to roll first top layer, then the batting back beyond 1/2 way point
    Spray taped layer, unroll and smooth batting, spray, unroll, smooth backing.
    Very quick and much less crawling on the floor Yes I have need pads.
    Now repeat on other side.
    I love to spray baste and finish the process with a good press, then I am nice and flat for quilting.

  18. Jenny Hiett April 13, 2017 at 11:17 pm #

    Such a wonderful post! Thanks for your insight. I have recently had a knee injury and have been trying to figure out how I am going to baste my quilts. You may have solved the problem for me! Thanks!

  19. Diane Mcclure April 14, 2017 at 2:10 am #

    I really like this spray .. it is expensive but does the job .. I have a wall hanging that I basted this way and have had no problems .. and it is 6 years old .. so the spray doesn’t seem to have caused a problem

  20. Olivia April 14, 2017 at 2:51 am #

    Hi Allison, this is exactly how I spray baste my quilts, too. But I do it the other way round, first spray baste the top on batting & then top/batting on the backing :o). I think I´m going to try your way. Love, Olivia

  21. Sandra Woods April 14, 2017 at 3:51 am #

    Try spray basting vertically. Tape the backing to a large wall. No sore knees–and gravity helps keep all the layers smooth.

  22. Staci April 14, 2017 at 4:10 am #

    Thank you for this tutorial. Although I’ve quilted for many many years, spray baste is new for me. I’ve used it successfully on small projects, but was baffled at dealing with anything larger. Folding and spraying as I went never occurred to me!

  23. Susan Swanson April 14, 2017 at 4:39 am #

    Thank you! Clear and concise – just what I needed – pictures and words. I’m back to quilting after a 20-year hiatus and it’s all wonderfully new. Thank you again.

  24. barbaradougherty126 April 14, 2017 at 4:43 am #

    I have never spray basted, may have to try it, thanks. I do have a question though, lol. Did you iron your batting? I don’t think I have ever seen such smooth batting. :)

    • Allison April 14, 2017 at 9:14 am #

      Nope but it came straight off of a roll!

  25. Ursula Beyeler April 14, 2017 at 5:46 am #

    Love your tutorials. As no one has mentioned any other basting method, this is what I’m going to try out:
    simple, low cost, no fumes, no clogging of the needle, who can ask for more?
    Love from Switzerland

    • Allison April 14, 2017 at 9:14 am #

      Thanks for the link! I’m going to try!

  26. vivian383 April 14, 2017 at 5:56 am #

    I’d love some advice from such a talented group! I tried spray basting a while ago on a throw sized quilt and had a problem with the batting “letting go” from the quilt top. I had to stop free motion quilting and pin baste. Do you think this was because I sprayed the quilt backing and top instead of the batting? This was several years ago, and I can’t remember the brand or the directions I followed then but I would be interested if anyone else had this experience or any insight. Thanks!

  27. Sheila Otte April 14, 2017 at 6:10 am #

    Thanks for this great tutorial and all of the above comments… what a wealth of information. I have learned so much, and can’t wait to try this on my next quilt. I have it bookmarked and ready to use.

  28. Melissa Lewis Reilly April 14, 2017 at 7:08 am #

    Upside for me – I have to clear out my dining room to sandwich – which means the hardwood gets a very good cleaning first. Hmmm. I should sandwhich more often. Seriously – a question for you all: when you make a very absurd design decision that requires the front and back (top and back?) align just so… how do you do this when you can’t see? It’s a tad maddening. Even if it’s as simple as wanting lines to be even?

    • pennylanequilts April 14, 2017 at 8:55 am #

      I make a mark on the batting that lines up with a seam or a design element on the backing. Then when I add the top, I align a seam or element from the top with those register marks.

  29. Vanessa April 14, 2017 at 7:32 am #

    Great tips and I love your t-shirt!!!❤️

  30. pennylanequilts April 14, 2017 at 8:59 am #

    Thanks for the tutorial. It’s always fun to see someone else crawling on the floor. (When I thread or pin baste, I use the method of rolling the layers onto boards and baste up on a table. When I spray baste, I pretty much do everything the same as you, except I lay a board across the middle to hold things in place when I flip the top back to spray the batting.

  31. Angie April 14, 2017 at 9:23 am #

    This is what I do too, except I didn’t think to fold the batting back in small folds like you do….I would fold the whole thing back up to the top from the half-way point. Definitely changing that to how you do it…more manageable!!

  32. Aggie April 14, 2017 at 11:50 am #

    I have spray basted a 90 x 90 quilt and I do it on a wall. I bought two 4 x 8 pieces of core board that I tape side by side. This I taped to the side of my garage that way the venilation is excellent but I have to do this on a calm day and in spring, summer and fall as winters can get a bit chilly in Canada.

  33. Jocelyn April 14, 2017 at 12:42 pm #

    Since I started using Spray Basting, I have had more confidence with my machine quilting! I can finally quilt on my domestic machine and not have tucks on the back :-)

  34. Adana April 14, 2017 at 1:51 pm #

    I love your blog! Thanks for your tutorials and being willing to take so many pictures. I spray baste on the carpet. A little softer and it grips the fabric and then I don’t need to tape. Works every time even with big quilts. 😊

  35. Kristen April 14, 2017 at 6:58 pm #

    I used 505 spray for a long time until I ran out and my LQS was sold out. I used the next thing I had available in my sewing room which was a can of Elmers Spray adhesive- just the basic, nothing fancy. It worked just as well as the 505 and is way cheaper! The big size I have was around $6 and I have done 4 or 5 throw sized quilts with it and it’s still about half full. The quilts aren’t “crunchy” or anything and the spray is strong enough to hold everything together until it’s quilted. I may never go back to 505.

    • Allison April 15, 2017 at 10:01 am #

      Definitely trying that next time! I looked online and it is way cheaper!

    • Rachel Aucoin April 27, 2017 at 5:43 am #

      Kristen, do you find that the Elmers gums up your machine or anything? I use the 505 spray but I am definitely open to something cheaper!

  36. Julia S. April 14, 2017 at 10:08 pm #

    Thank you for the tutorial.. I especially loved the reference to babies in red stripped pajamas! Thanks so much for the laugh!!!

  37. Gigi Voegeli April 15, 2017 at 3:15 am #

    Thanks for including the link to the Seaside quilt! I had forgotten about that. It’s so soft and old fashioned looking! And the tutorial is so clear, like all your patterns. Thanks so much!

    • Allison April 15, 2017 at 10:01 am #

      You’re welcome and I’m glad you like it! Thank you!

  38. Deb April 15, 2017 at 5:25 am #

    I love spray basting the sandwich. Our pool table works great. I throw down an old sheet first to protect the table cover. The sheet also makes it easy to move everything around without actually messing with the sandwich. Lay the batting down with the backing on top. Fold the backing in half and spray the backing, then lay over batting and smooth. Repeat for the other half. Once that side is done, flip it over, add the top and repeat. I always spray the fabric and then smooth onto the batting. Have found it’s easier to manage any wrinkles.

  39. darlene April 15, 2017 at 12:22 pm #

    this is an update on the homemade quilt basting spray:

  40. Debby April 15, 2017 at 12:27 pm #

    I love the tutorial AND all the comments. I should read comments more often. Could I tape it to carpet? Thanks so much for this post. I just told my friend the other day that this is the worst part of quilting. I need to change my additive.

    • Debby April 15, 2017 at 12:28 pm #

      You all know I mean attitude, right? Hahaha

    • Allison April 15, 2017 at 8:24 pm #

      I agree…attitude or not it is the WORST part of quilting! :) I think you could tape it to the carpet…another person said that I don’t see why not! You could probably pin it if your carpet was thick maybe?

  41. christinetx April 15, 2017 at 2:17 pm #

    I don’t seem to move like you can on the floor. So I use a few pieces of tape for the backing and then I grab my pool noodle large one and roll up my batting. Same technique, you fold I roll. I get a bit of over spray but I steam floor afterwards. I just bought my first can of 505. I haven’t tried this brand yet they always seem to be out of it when I need it.

  42. Paula April 16, 2017 at 10:21 am #

    Thanks for the tutorial. My husband and I have been using basting spray on our quilts for several years and feel it works really well, although we do use some widely-spaced pins just to be safe. Also, we have 2 of the 6-foot folding tables that we bring out for this purpose. They’re wide and long enough for most of our quilts and it saves the back and knees.

    One thing I noticed on the can of 505 spray the other day is this “To remove-dry clean.” I never noticed this before and have washed all of the quilts. Any thoughts on whether the spray is being removed in the wash? I’d hate to think I’m gifting baby quilts with spray residue.

  43. ellen April 17, 2017 at 6:32 am #

    Please add my name to the iron-after-spraying list. I had not been doing this until I heard Jacquie Gering mention it at the MQG show in Savannah. I ironed the next quilt I spray basted and was very happy with the result. BTW, I also spray very sparingly (as recommended by Elizabeth Dackson) and find that a single can lasts for half a dozen or more small to medium quilts.

  44. Janie April 17, 2017 at 4:09 pm #

    I use Dritz Spray Adhesive from JoAnne’s. Very little odor and not as sticky as some. I have had no problem with spray basting a quilt and not quilting it until several months later. I also use two of the cardboard pattern cutting boards (also from JoAnne’s) which I place side by side on my table or overlap slightly and use bulldog clips to hold them together. By using it on my table, I do not have to crawl around on the floor. You could also do it on a bed. If it is a particularly large quilt, and I think I might “overspray”, I put some paper around the edges. I have done this for years and have never had a problem.

  45. Cathy O'Connor April 18, 2017 at 7:48 am #

    Thank you sooo much for this tutorial!! Makes so much sense! I have sprayed the backside of the fabric and it has left a mark in my quilts. From now on, I will keep repeating to myself…’Only spray the batting!’ :-) I love your blog! Thanks for sharing with all of us in the quilting world.

  46. nonniew April 18, 2017 at 3:05 pm #

    Thank you! This is terrific! I’m a fairly recent convert to spray basting, and your roll-up method is a big improvement on the way I’ve been doing it. This is timely for me as I’m just now ready to baste a full sized quilt for a son’s college graduation present.

    Also – I thoroughly enjoy your blog and patterns! Yesterday I started a Summer Slice quilt, and I smile every time I see the happy selection of fabrics I’m working with.

  47. Linda April 18, 2017 at 8:31 pm #

    I think this is the best spray basting tutorial I’ve ever read. Unfortunately, I can no longer get down on the floor to try it. (no cartilage in my right hip) I might try doing baby quilts like this on a large table.

    Cute shirt. Good luck on getting the family to notice it… I didn’t smoke for very long, but when I quit, I didn’t mention it to my daughter who was about 12 at the time(it was just the two of us). There was a PSA on TV about how dangerous second-hand smoke was. She turned around and said, “you’re killing me”, and I replied, “not for the last 2 1/2 weeks.” She said, “you quit?”………..sigh

    • Allison April 28, 2017 at 3:25 pm #

      Lol this cracks me up!!!

  48. tinaor April 20, 2017 at 10:37 am #

    great tutorial – thanks! will try that when I have something bigger than a baby quilt,

  49. Wendy April 22, 2017 at 9:27 am #

    I have carpet in the area where I spray baste (using Dritz from Joann – less fumes and cheap with 60% off coupons). To keep my backing in place I use large T pins around the edge of the fabric being careful to just keep it taught and not pulled in any area. I used about 6 per side on a queen size quilt. Works for me every time. I’ll be giving my design wall a try for smaller quilts after reading all the comments about it!

  50. Kat April 22, 2017 at 10:06 am #

    Thanks for putting this tutorial together (and I love the Maker Valley t-shirt, so great)! I wonder if you could get a big piece of particle board or something and put it up on some saw-horses. Might be expensive if you don’t have those lying around, but our garage is fuuuullll of stuff like that. :P That way you aren’t on your knees and super stiff the next day.

    • Vicki P April 23, 2017 at 3:38 pm #

      I have been a dedicated spray baster for many years. As you suggested, I set up a temporary spray basting table in my garage – four sawhorses, two 4′ x 8′ masonite boards. I can baste a king size quilt in 30 minutes, including setup and takedown. Really saves my creaky old knees and back!

    • Allison April 28, 2017 at 3:24 pm #

      Yes! I’ve seen great boards people have used in garages and stuff…even made just for basting! Also a few people have said they just baste up on a wall with the quilt pinned to the wall or board.

  51. Jen B April 29, 2017 at 7:51 pm #

    Has anyone tried spray basting with poly wadding? I’ve heard that it doesn’t stick as well as it does on cotton. But then people also say it’s great with minky, which is poly, so I’m a bit confused.

  52. Kathy May 1, 2017 at 9:37 am #

    Such an interesting discussion! I spray baste and then pin but not as close together as I would if just pinning. Except for small projects, I do all my basting on a table that has been raised to a comfortable height. My knees thank me!!

  53. lizrehrauer May 1, 2017 at 5:53 pm #

    Allison. I followed your wonderful instructions and the basting was a breeze. It was the first time I’ve ever spray basted. So easy. BUT, now I can’t quilt it. The glue gums up the needle and in a matter of seconds my machine skips stitches and eventually shreads the thread. What do I do now? I got the middle stitched both ways but I can’t get the rest of it. I even washed the sandwich hoping to get Enough of the glue off. Didn’t work. I’ve been sewing and ripping for two days…

    • Allison May 8, 2017 at 8:41 pm #

      Oh that’s so strange! Was it the 505? And what kind of machine do you have and what size of needle are you using? I’ve never had that problem or heard of that….even when I over zealously spray! I wonder if it’s something else going on and the basting spray just exacerbated the problem or something.

    • Sue February 21, 2022 at 2:46 pm #

      I’m my yes!!! I am presently having the same problem. I have used the same basting spray, same batting & I have cleaned my machine so many times, changed needles numerous times, ripped more than I can count. Am just sick & so disgusted.nI have had trouble with my needle gumming up. I spray the batting to the backing & the top layer. I wonder if I should spray the fabric versus the batting

  54. liz rondellle May 9, 2017 at 9:09 am #

    I heart spray basting! But hate crawling on the floor. I do all this on wall. Works. Try it with smaller
    quilts first, then graduate to larger.

  55. Cathy Stern Lichtman May 16, 2017 at 7:55 pm #

    Do you think I could spray baste the front and back, minus the batting, of a chuppah (wedding canopy) so that it will flow in the breeze. Then after the wedding separate it and turn it into a quilt.

    • Allison May 23, 2017 at 10:15 am #

      It would be hard to get them unstuck after the wedding but it’s definitely a good option…maybe just baste in “dots” every 8″ or so like someone suggested in the comments. Or even do a few basting stitches here and there and take them out when you are done!

  56. Roseanne Atkinson August 9, 2017 at 12:36 am #

    Allison, the very first quilt I spray basted I put up on my Moms old quilting frame, my Dad made. Used thumb tacks to hold the backing to the frame then layed out and smoothed the batting and top. Rolled half back at a time to spray bast, it was fast, easy and no knee pain. Love that good old fashion quilt frame. Growing up Mom would set it up in the frontroom put a quilt on it and we would preceed to hand quilt it.

    • Allison August 13, 2017 at 11:00 pm #

      I love that Roseanne!

  57. Jennie November 7, 2017 at 11:53 am #

    Thank you for the tutorial. Trying this technique for the first time today. Cross your fingers for me!

  58. Crystal Johnston January 13, 2018 at 11:25 am #

    I just found this and really enjoyed reading every last comment. I am making a quilt for my 5th grandchild and her mommy asked for minky on the back.🤔 I am going to use the spray basting method and hope everything stays straight.
    I love the book Growing up Modern. I’ll look forward to future posts.

    • Allison January 16, 2018 at 1:56 pm #

      Yes Spraying will help! With minky especially if it’s heavy, I also pin baste…I do both and it’s probably over kill but it moves so much during quilting!

  59. Rosie February 3, 2018 at 8:31 am #

    I have a ‘table protector’ on my dining room table. Felt on one side and rubber type on the other. I can tape my backing onto that and then slide it around the table. I’ve also done it on a waxed cotton cloth. Saves my knees and back.
    Great tutorial. Many thanks.

  60. vicky snyder February 27, 2018 at 11:20 am #

    Great tutorial! I’ve been trying to spray the whole thing and then lay the material on it and smooth it out, doesn’t work so well. I was going to go back to pins. Gonna go try it your way today!

  61. Bev Cotton November 7, 2018 at 6:32 am #

    Spray Basting is the way to go. I also trim the sandwich to 3-4” around after spraying. I then fold over the batting/backing overedge on itself and put in a few pins. I just bought several white tables – $39, 30”x 72” at WalMart, to do all this off the floor. Seventy Two and crawling on your knees just not an option. Thanks for the explicit pix and descriptions. Happy Quilting

  62. Jan Vincent January 1, 2019 at 12:57 pm #

    I spray baste exclusively but I do it on my design wall (upright) instead of the floor (I have old bone-on-bone knees). The added benefit of the wall method is gravity keeps the layers straight instead of “ruffling” up as I work. I don’t use 505 though, I use a June Taylor spray call Quilt Basting Spray that I purchase from JoAnn’s. It holds the quilt sandwich together perfectly and I have not detected any order from it. I say that Christa – I’m A Colorful Quilter spray bastes also but she takes her quilts outside. I live in Kansas where several months of the year you do not want to be outside in the cold, so with this J Taylor spray I can do them inside all year long.

    • Allison January 1, 2019 at 9:25 pm #

      I also use the June Taylor Spray…I honestly think it works just as well!

  63. Barb B. July 17, 2019 at 8:42 am #

    I’ve never spray basted but going to try it. I have a 4 x 8’ sheet of Masonite that is cut in half. Both halves have a black line going down the middle of the length. The cut marks the middle of the width. I put a pin the top, batting and backing to mark these center points and match them up to marks/cut on the board. I’m anxious to use this method to spray baste by rolling my layers as you did. I put this board on my dining table.

    • Allison July 17, 2019 at 1:41 pm #

      That’s a great way to do it! I do more table/counter basting now, but the method is pretty much the same.

  64. westernwilson August 13, 2019 at 5:33 am #

    I have one question: how do you center the backing and the top? As for floor basting, I think the method of basting that Sharon Schamber put up on Youtube would adapt well to spray basting. She does it seated, at a table, using a simple roll technique to control her layers, using 1 x 4’s as wide as the quilt. Sharon hand sew-basted her quilts in this video but spray basting would work just as well. Here is the link:

    • Allison August 13, 2019 at 9:17 pm #

      I just eyeball my top centered on the quilt. I’ve actually done that method rolling the quilt as you go, but I do it at my kitchen island or table and I just stand…I think it works well, but it does take more time than just plopping it on my floor, so that’s usually what I do for a large quilt. Thank you for the link to the video!

  65. Marcie Stone August 31, 2019 at 4:48 am #

    OH YES! I use June Tailor and with the tip I recently found about going SLOWLY with my walking foot, I was finally able to machine quilt without “pleats”. And taping down the backing is a must…don’t know how the person who said she uses a bed to put her quilt sandwich together could possibly get a taut, neat, quilt sandwich!

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