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Thread: Quilting designs?

  1. #1
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    New at this,here is my question,when quilting does the pattern of the quilt matter more to the front or the back, i see from other's quilts how they put designs in doddles and some in patterns. i have only done stitch in the ditch, How do you decide what pattern to use? How do you decide how much to do?(hope everyone can understand what i'm trying to say)

  2. #2
    Super Member bjnicholson's Avatar
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    I'm listening too!

  3. #3
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    Apparently, quilts talk to some people. If mine talk, they just say, Keep It Simple Stupid! I always start out with great visions and end up with straight lines because I'm afraid I'll mess things up.

  4. #4
    Junior Member Lobster's Avatar
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    Some of it is basic practicalities. What kind of quilting can you do - is it by hand or machine, are you comfortable quilting curves or are you happier with straight lines, are you able to do fancy advanced stuff or do you prefer easier motifs? Then there is the issue of how much time you want to spend on the quilting. Another point is the batting: there is a maximum distance for quilting lines which varies depending on what sort of batting it is (cotton can be quilting further apart than polyester, for instance), and if you quilt further apart than the recommended maximum, then you may get problems such as the batting shifting. 4" is a common maximum distance for poly, I think it's about 8" for cotton, but it may vary by manufacturer.

    I did stitch in the ditch for my first quilt too. I was intimidated by working out a quilting pattern as well as a piecing pattern, and to be honest I had used the kind of piecing pattern that was quite busy enough already (Carpenter's Square). My quilting has gradually become more adventurous over time. At the moment I'm very inspried by Welsh quilting, which you can see examples of if you put "Welsh quilting" into Google Image.

    I strongly recommend Google Image for ideas in general. If you're doing a certain quilt block, let's say a Jacob's Ladder, then you put "Jacob's Ladder quilt" into Google Image, and it will bring up thousands of examples of how other people have made that quilt. There are usually plenty of images which show enough detail that you can see what sort of quilting patterns were done.

    I like to keep a folder on my computer of inspiring quilting patterns, and when I'm stuck I look through them.

  5. #5
    RST
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    Senior Member RST's Avatar
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    I pretty much do improvisational designs -- like doodling with the machine, so I don't draw out a pattern before sitting down to free motion. I do however, think it through somewhat and have a general idea of how I plan to fill the blocks. I often will take a photo of the entire quilt on the design wall, as well as a close up of a single block. I print these out on my printer in black and white and I doodle on them, figuring out pleasing designs and looking for landmarks for myself. So I'll not that I will make a loop that extends from a specific point on the block, back to the center, for example. I often post those doodles above my machine as I work and use them for reference somewhat.

    As for how much to do -- it takes some practice to get an even coverage, but one way to do it is to visualize say, a quarter on your quilt top, and always aim to have the stitching lines roughly the same distance as a quarter would be -- use whatever object fits with what you plan -- it could be a hands-breadth or a coffee mug, if you want looser coverage.

    As to your question about the design mattering more to front or back. Not totally sure where you are going with that, but I always relate the quilting to the blocks on the front. What happens on the back is secondary and a nice plus, but I don't specifically quilt with the backing in mind. You could, if you wanted to. I've seen people do outline quilting of the background fabric, and then whatever happens on front is a happy accident. I think that works in some situations, but not as a generally useful technique.

    RST

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lobster
    Some of it is basic practicalities. What kind of quilting can you do - is it by hand or machine, are you comfortable quilting curves or are you happier with straight lines, are you able to do fancy advanced stuff or do you prefer easier motifs? Then there is the issue of how much time you want to spend on the quilting. Another point is the batting: there is a maximum distance for quilting lines which varies depending on what sort of batting it is (cotton can be quilting further apart than polyester, for instance), and if you quilt further apart than the recommended maximum, then you may get problems such as the batting shifting. 4" is a common maximum distance for poly, I think it's about 8" for cotton, but it may vary by manufacturer.

    I did stitch in the ditch for my first quilt too. I was intimidated by working out a quilting pattern as well as a piecing pattern, and to be honest I had used the kind of piecing pattern that was quite busy enough already (Carpenter's Square). My quilting has gradually become more adventurous over time. At the moment I'm very inspried by Welsh quilting, which you can see examples of if you put "Welsh quilting" into Google Image.

    I strongly recommend Google Image for ideas in general. If you're doing a certain quilt block, let's say a Jacob's Ladder, then you put "Jacob's Ladder quilt" into Google Image, and it will bring up thousands of examples of how other people have made that quilt. There are usually plenty of images which show enough detail that you can see what sort of quilting patterns were done.

    I like to keep a folder on my computer of inspiring quilting patterns, and when I'm stuck I look through them.

    Thanks, I'll give google a look see

  7. #7
    Super Member Quiltforme's Avatar
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    It depends how you want you quilt to look. Do you want your fabric to show then you do a limited quilting SID or somethign that shows the fabric. If you want the quilt design to take over you then do an amazing design. Look at Charismas quilts she does she chooses based on what the quilt looks like does she want the piecing to come through? For my avatar I am going to quilt the blue heavily and then lightly quilt the colored parts to show off the design.

  8. #8
    Senior Member darlin121's Avatar
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    I don't machine quilt, I'm a big scaredey cat! But I'm trying to work up my nerve and find these posts very helpful.... so thanks!

  9. #9
    Marion Jean's Avatar
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    My least favorite expression - "quilt as desired"

  10. #10
    Super Member whinnytoo's Avatar
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    when I machine quilt, I tend to look at the fabric and the overall pattern. If its a floral fabric but has nice solid fabric spaces, I tend to go with a floral quilting design.
    Also if the quilt is for a man or woman, that has significance.... swirls etc go well on plaid fabrics.
    If the quilt has a theme, that sways me toward the theme with a design. All in all, its what the quilt owner likes but I usually try to have a few suggestions

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