How to Use a Grace Machine Quilting Frame

By Jennifer Terry
Use the Grace machine quilt frame

Grace machine quilting frames are designed to be used with any home quilting machine. The quilting frame has four rails working together to keep the quilt layers pulled taut while the machine quilts. The quilt machine operator pushes the machine back and forth on a carriage system as the machine stitches. Ratchets on the end of the quilt frame keep the rails rolling in the correct direction when installing and quilting the project.

Attach Batting to the Rail

Center the width of the batting on the width of the bottom rail.

Press the batting into the slot that runs the of width of the rail. Press the tubing that came with the quilt frame in on top of the batting to secure the batting in place. This is called Fabri-Fast tubing.

Place the ratchet level in neutral position and roll the batting on the rail.

Attach Quilt Top to the Rail

Spread the quilt top out flat on the Grace quilt frame table right side up. Line up the center of the quilt top with the center of the middle rail.

Insert the end of the quilt top into the slot on the middle rail. Press the Fabri-Fast tubing in the slot with the fabric.

Turn the rail to roll the quilt top onto the rail. The ratchet must be in the engaged position. Roll the top slowly and smooth out wrinkles as you go. Roll the entire top onto the rail.

Attach Lining to the Rail

Place the lining on the quilt frame table right side down. Line up the center of the lining with the center of the top rail.

Insert the end of the lining into the slot on the top rail. Press the Fabri-Fast tubing in the slot with the fabric. The right side of the lining will face the rail.

Turn the rail to roll the lining onto the rail. The ratchet must be in the engaged position. Roll the lining slowly and smooth out wrinkles as you go. Roll the entire lining onto the rail.

Attach All Layers to the Take-up Rail

Position the take-up rail ratchet to the engaged position.

Place the lining-rail ratchet in the neutral position. Pull the lining up to the take-up rail. Insert the end of the lining and Fabri-Fast into the take-up rail.

Pull the batting end between the lining and quilt-top rails and position the edge on the lining, at the edge of the take-up rail.

Place the ratchet of the quilt-top rail in the neutral position. Pull the quilt top and line up the edge with the batting's edge. Pin the batting and top to the lining.

Tip

If the batting is too thick to insert in the slot, tape the batting to the rail using strong packaging tape.

Warning

Do not stretch the fabric or batting while installing.

About the Author

Jennifer Terry is program director for TriCounty Agency for Intellectual Disabilities. As a University of Alabama graduate, she holds a Masters in rehabilitation counseling and a Bachelor in psychology with an emphasis in child development. She also earned an Associate in business management and second Associate in computer information systems from Bevill State Community College. She holds a grant writing certificate from North Georgia College and State University.