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11.4 Getting the hang of it!

I posted this quilt several weeks ago, but I’ve been meaning to share the process for hanging it. I didn’t do it alone – Jon is terrific at taking an idea and making it work, and I (usually) know when to just be the assistant.

There are lots of methods for hanging quilts. We’ve tried drapery rods, push pins, cute hangers, dowels and cording. I’m not a country kind of girl, so most of the wood shelf/quilt hangers don’t have much appeal. And the invisible systems are insanely expensive.  Like $35 to $100 for what amounts to a 2″ flat drapery rod and a couple wall hooks. Seriously? I’d rather buy fabric.

Important: this method is easy and inexpensive, but it’s not adjustable, so if you are planning on rotating wall quilts they either need to be the same width, or you’ll need to use a different method. We’re talking wall anchors, folks!

Constructing the hanging sleeve is really important. I’ve never entered a show before, so I’m not well versed on the requirements for sleeves, but there are lots of experts online to help.  If you think you might want to show your quilt in the future, I highly recommend you check those out first in case something in this method conflicts. The method I used (links below) builds some extra ease into the sleeve so the quilt hangs flat and the top doesn’t curl back over the board.

Gloria Hansen has great directions and photos on her blog, and she credits Libby Lehman for this easy method. I love the handwork of binding my quilts, so I had no problem with the extra step of attaching the sleeve free of the binding (not stitched into the binding at the top), and I think I got a better result without the worry of the sleeve peeking out the top when hung.  The only modification I made was to shorten the finished sleeve to 1″ narrower than the quilt on each end (2″ total). To do that, I cut the sleeve fabric the exact width of the quilt, and then turned 1/2 inch under twice on each end for the hems.

Jon bought a  1″ x 4″ (3/4″ x 3.5″ actual dims) and cut it 2″ shorter than the full width of the quilt (many lumber stores can do this for you).  He skipped the pine and went for poplar, simple because it’s a harder grain and the eye hooks go into the end of each board. Once they were screwed into the board, we held the board up on the wall at the height I wanted the quilt hung, and leveled it. He marked the spot on the wall through each cup hook, and then inserted wall anchors at each mark.

Here’s why I think my guy is clever. When he was at the hardware store, he noticed that these square bend hooks (on the far left) had #10 threads, just like the wall anchors.  Once the anchors were in place, he screwed these in,  and up the quilt went. We simply set the eye hooks over the square bend hooks and it all settled into place.

Without the hooks, we would have sized the eye hooks so a screw could go through them and into the wall anchors. Simple also, but it means holding the board and quilt in place while starting the screw.

Total cost of the project ~ about $12.50

  • Board – approx. $10.00
  • Cup hooks – $.25
  • Wall anchors (suitable for your wall) – $1.oo
  • Square bend hooks – $1.20 

Now I just need to finish the wall quilt for our bedroom.

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