Choosing a t-shirt quilt maker can be overwhelming! Here are seven things to consider in choosing the best shop to design and make your t-shirt quilt.
1. How long has the shop/company been making T-shirt quilts?
It takes may years to perfect your skills to make great t-shirt quilts. You don’t want the maker to “learn” on your shirts. Every day people hang out their “shingle” and declare they are in the t-shirt quilt making business. A lot are hobby quilters who have not invested in the proper equipment and training. They usually close up shop when they realize how time consuming and physically demanding it is to make t-shirt quilts!
I have been a full time quilter since 2004 and have specialized in t-shirt quilts since 2011. I have worked with many different fabrics and understand basic quilting principles. I also love the challenge of taking shirts and turning them into beautiful quilts!
Also since I started out as a quilter I have vast knowledge of design and color.
2.What type of quilt would you like?
There are many types of quilts. Some styles work better with your shirts than others. Sometimes it is just a personal preference.
We offer many styles of quilts. We offer the Mosaic/Collage style, the Traditional style, the Budget Friendly style, and the Framed style. Click here to learn about all the styles.
3. Does the T-shirt quilt maker use stabilizer on the backs of the tee shirts?
Stabilizer is a VERY important part of your t-shirt quilt. I use a lightweight stabilizer that strengthens the t-shirts and adds NO weight to the quilt. By using stabilizer we are able to quilt an all over pattern on your quilt. This means we quilt over the seams which makes a sturdier and flatter quilt.
T-shirt quilt makers who skip this step usually will quilt in each block but not go over the seams. It is SO important to reinforce the seams with quilting stitches.
T-shirt quilt makers who claim stabilizer makes a stiff quilt are not using the correct weight of stabilizer!
4. The quilting stitches.
A professional t-shirt quilt maker has the proper equipment. Hobby quilters will sometimes tie the quilts in the corner or push them through a domestic machine. Neither one of these are good options. T-shirt quilts need to be quilted on a long arm quilting machine. The long arm machine allows the quilt to be stretched properly and specialty thread to be used.
I quilt an all over pattern on the t-shirt quilts we make. The pattern goes over the whole quilt including the seams. Be wary of quilters who stitch a custom design in each block. They are not reinforcing the seams-the most vulnerable part to the t-shirt quilt.
5. Is your t-shirt quilt made in one place?
Does the quilter make your t-shirt quilt in one place? Some quilters piece the top and then send the top out to be long arm quilted. There are risks involved. The long armer’s name is not at stake. They may not take the needed care or attention to detail to make the quilt the best it can be. Also moving the quilt from place to place increases the chance that quilts can be lost or misplaced.
6. Quality of materials used?
Quality materials are extremely important to the look and feel of the t-shirt quilt. 100% cotton fabric is not all the same quality. Big box stores sell an inferior cotton fabric and batting. Thin and scratchy fabric from these stores will not wash well or last.
All fabric used in our quilts are purchased from Fabric.com. We know we are getting high quality quilting cottons. On the rare occasion the quality of the fabric has not been what I am used to I have returned the fabric and worked with the customer to choose a different fabric.
7. What is the turnaround time to get your quilt made?
We can get your quilt made in 4-6 weeks after we get your shirts. This time frame allows us to order the custom fabric and also lets us send proofs to approve along he way. A t-shirt shop that quotes you 6 months to a year may not be a full time business. Don’t entrust your t-shirt quilt to a part-time quilter!
Lynn and I love helping customers get the perfect t-shirt quilt. Let us know if you have any questions! thanks-Vivian