Please do not pin or baste your quilt in any way. That's my job! Check for stray pins.
If you aren't already a "pre-wash" convert, consider pre-shrinking all material before cutting/ assembling your quilt. This will avoid "bleeding" of fabrics (particularly reds) and ensure an even shrinkage across all fabrics in Top and Backing.
As quilt blocks and pieces are assembled, the edges tend to grow. As a result, edges are often longer than the center of the quilt. If you cut a border strip of fabric, sew it to an edge, trim it off, and repeat around the quilt, chances are that the borders will be longer than the center of the quilt, and you will have "ruffled" borders. Our goal as piecer and quilter is a flat, square quilt.To avoid ruffled borders, measure the center of your quilt, cut the first set of border strips to that length, mark the centers of the strips and the centers of the sides of the quilt, and pin from the center out to each side, easing in fullness. If your quilt is large, take three measurements across the center, average the measurements, and use that number for your border length. Re-measure and repeat for the second set of borders. If you are making a top with several borders, repeat this technique for each.
Longarm quilting is a hand-guided art. Thus, computerized perfection cannot be achieved nor is it a built-in part of the longarm quilting process. Please insure that your piecing and borders lie flat. Longarm quilting will not "fix" misaligned patchwork or the uneven borders that can cause your quilt to have puckers or tucks when quilted. Your quilt will be as free of pleats, fullness or tucks as your piecing allows. Don't scrimp on Batting. Cheaper versions (without scrim or bonding) often fall apart on the machine or poke out of the fabric (called "bearding").
Following these guidelines will help ensure there won't be delays in the longarm quilting process, additional fees, and will avoid the possibility of getting placed back on the waiting list while waiting for any corrections to be made.
Unless otherwise specified I use Sew Fine or Bottom Line Tri-lobal Poly Thread from Superior Threads. It is a high quality, durable lightweight thread. This helps prevent thread buildup and maintains a smoother look on your finished quilt.
When we talk about your quilt, please be prepared to discuss preferences for thread, batting, quilting design, pre-shrinking, and costs. I want to be very clear about your expectations so that neither of us is disappointed.
If you have a question about the tips, please ask!