Do any of you use quilt basting spray? Helen of the Runquiltknitwrite blog posed the question in her post yesterday. She was considering getting some and wondering if it works on large quilting projects. I thought this question made a great topic for discussion.
I love spray baste. It smells horrendous, but if you use it outside you don't notice it so much. The smell dissipates in a minute or two and does not linger on your project. I also have only used it on small projects--Schnibble size projects meant for a wall hanging or table topper. There are a number of choices out there when it comes to purchasing the product. The first one I ever tried was made by Sulky.
It comes in a wee tiny can and costs $12.95 for just over 4 ounces! At least that was the price when I purchased it over a year ago. It is a fine product. The stuff is sticky, but not so much that your sewing needle gets gunked up when you do your machine quilting. It also is not so adhesive that you cannot lift up your fabric and reposition or smooth things out. They claim the product is odorless (it may smell less than the others I have tried) and that it is friendly to the Ozone Layer--which if true, may be a reason to purchase it over other brands. Also, it is the only product of the three I have used which claims to be non-flammable.
The next time I purchased spray adhesive I picked up the June Tailor brand at KMart.
It was WAY cheaper than the Sulky and you get three times the amount of product. My can doesn't have a price tag on it, so I can't tell you what I paid for it, but I think it was around $13. This product works just fine as well. It may be slightly less sticky than the Sulky, but not so much that it caused any problems. No sticky sewing machine needles and you can fudge around with positioning your fabric until things are as smooth as you like. No Ozone claims that I could see on the can. It is also extremely flammable, and makes no claim to be odorless (it was the stinkiest of the three).
The next time I had to buy spray basting adhesive was this past Fall, when the first two cans I showed above were packed who-knows-where out in the garage.
That time I picked up 505, which was $12.95 for an amount somewhere in between the Sulky and the June Tailor--just over 6 ounces. It worked exactly the same as the other two products. No negative issues. It has a warning that it is extremely flammable and claims to be odorless. No mention of the Ozone Layer.
So, my feeling is, there doesn't seem to be much difference in terms of functionality between the three products I have tried. They all worked to stick the three layers of the quilt sandwich together and caused no problems with my sewing machine while I was quilting. The Sulky may have an edge over the other two products as far as being more environmentally friendly and non-flammable. You will have to ask yourself if those plusses are negated by the high price and smaller amount of product. Being constantly watching my pennies, I lean towards buying the cheaper products that work just as well. If anyone has a differing experience or opinion, please weigh in so we can all be educated.
Here is how I do my spray basting. I go outside and just use a cleanly swept patch of concrete patio or driveway. Don't judge me. It has worked fine--no dirty fabric or any other problems. Just make sure the concrete is clean and not covered with dust, ants, oil drippings from your car, leaves, or other debris. If you are appalled by this idea, go ahead and lay down a drop cloth or clean sheet and have no worries.
I press my backing and batting and lay the backing fabric face down. I spray the wrong side of the backing liberally with the spray adhesive and then immediately position the batting on top of it, making sure it is fairly centered on the backing. Smooth the batting down in place. Then I flip the piece over and smooth the heck out of the backing.
Smooth, smooth, smooth.
Flip the piece back over so the batting is on top again. Spray the heck out of the batting and position the quilt top on it.
A word of caution. Do not spray your shoes accidently. You will be very sorry the next time you walk through leaves or sand, ending up with shoes that look like jungle camo, or in the case of being covered with sand, weigh 5 pounds each. That happened to me once. I accidently sprayed my new espadrilles with what I thought was Stain Guard, and turned out to be spray adhesive. Then I took my kid to the park sandbox. It wasn't pretty. I looked like the Mob had given me cement booties and was going to toss me in the East River.
At this point, when the spraying is done, I take the project back inside to my cutting table or other large flat surface and smooth things again like mad--on both the top and the back. If you need to lift up the top or backing to reposition things slightly, the spray adhesive is fairly forgiving. If you really mess around with it, you may have to respray though. This has not happened to me. Just be vigilant to be sure there are no puckers on the backing, quilt top, and batting layer.
You can strategically place a few quilt basting pins if you want to, but it really isn't necessary with a small project. I would stay stitch around the edges of the project to secure things around the border. Then you are ready to quilt!
So, to address Helen's question--will this work on a large project???