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Thread: Newbie question about the walking foot

  1. #1
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    Newbie question about the walking foot

    What exactly does a walking foot do different from a regular foot. I have never quilted a quilt before, and am now starting on a table runner (I thought small was good to start with.) I am going to do just simple straight lines on it when I quilt it. I know I should use a walking foot but never found anything that really explained what it does and why it is good to use.

    I did make a crib bumper for my son's crib. Since I really don't know how to sew I pretty much just go with the make it up method for most projects and see what will happen. Any, so what I did was make each panel for the four sides separately. I layered the fabric like this when I sewed it together: batting, batting, fabric for back, fabric for front. (I had two layers of batting since it was kind of thin and I wanted a little bulk to the bumper to help it stand up in the crib since there was not a lot of places to add ties to hold it in place.) I then sewed three sides together and then turned in inside out (or outside in I guess) and the sewed the last seem up. Anyway, when sewing the long sides of the bumper (the top and bottom) the top layer of fabric kept stretching and not feeding very well so by the time I got to the corner, the top layer of fabric was about 1 1/2 inches longer than the batting (I checked and all was the same size when I started.) Would the walking foot have helped with this since it was so thick even though I wasn't actually quilting, or am I completely confused on what a walking foot does?


    Thanks in advance.
    Sabrina

  2. #2
    Super Member woody's Avatar
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    A walking foot will feed the fabric through evenly, top and bottom
    This might answer some of your questions
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYlkyUZvUqM
    The biggest risk is the one not taken

  3. #3
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    a walking foot works along with the feed dogs and (walks) along instead of just skimming along the top of the fabric-
    it feeds the fabric-top & bottom (with the feed dogs) evenly and helps keep everything even- you do not get puckers-
    from the top & bottom moving at different rates. it really helps with multiple layers (top/batting/backing) keeping everything even.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  4. #4
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
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    Its almost like having feed dogs on top of the fabric as well as the bottom, it grips the top fabric at the same rate as the bottom. When you don't use one usually the bottom feeds at a faster rate and you get gaps between the top and bottom fabrics at the beginning point, and you can get some puckers. Also walking feet are great for difficult fabrics like plaids, velvet, minky,etc.

  5. #5
    Senior Member DeniseP's Avatar
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    I love my walking foot and would not machine quilt without it.

  6. #6
    Super Member LucyInTheSky's Avatar
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    Have you ever noticed when you piece that even when the pieces start out the same size, sometimes the top piece ends up longer than the bottom? It's because the feed dogs pull the fabric forward while the foot pushes it back.

    A walking foot definitely makes a difference because it's even feed on the top and bottom. When I did my first binding, I used a regular foot and what happened was the top layer of the binding (since it was folded over) ended up being pushed/stretched by the foot so that it didn't line up with its bottom part, and I ended up with a fold on just that layer. Walking foot keeps that from happening.

    It's definitely worth getting. Try quilting a sample without the walking foot and then with it, and you should notice a difference.
    Nothing's a mistake. It's a learning experience. Some experiences, you learn more than others.

  7. #7
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    i have never used a walking foot. i received one when i bought my janome.
    i will have to try it some day.

  8. #8
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    Repeat after me..."The walking foot is my friend"....you will never want to work without one once you have worked with one. I've been at this since 1997 and for the first couple of years I didn't have one - AGH!!!! Once in a while I will forget to put it on for the binding. It doesn't take long to realize it's not there! Get one!

  9. #9
    Junior Member HollyDav's Avatar
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    I agree. I am a big fan of the walking foot. Can't imagine quilting without it.

  10. #10
    Senior Member roadrunr's Avatar
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    My Pfaff came with a built in walking foot and I just love it! It feeds the top and the bottom evenly, so there are no puckers!
    Do all for His glory.

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