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Can you machine quilt a wool quilt top or does it have to be hand quilted?

Can you machine quilt a wool quilt top or does it have to be hand quilted?

Old 09-03-2010, 09:57 PM
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I have a wool quilt top and was wondering if anyone here has ever machine quilted a wool quilt top. Please let me know if this is okay or just a real no no. Is there anything special that you have to do if you machine quilt it? Thanks for the info as you can tell I am fairly new to quilting.
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Old 09-03-2010, 10:01 PM
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This is a very good question! I've been quilting for 20 years and am contemplating my first wool quilt.
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Old 09-03-2010, 11:10 PM
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I did some googling. Things are things that I read, I have no experience with any of these. What I learned was:
1. You can hand quilt, but it is heavy and may be much easier to machine quilt
2. It is very heavy
3. Some people use sweaters and make felted wool
4. Fulled wool is really good, but extremely expensive and in limited colors
5. Antique wool quilts often had flannel backing
6. Many people use wool applique's on Flannel fabrics
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Old 09-04-2010, 12:40 AM
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I've machined a wool quilt. I made a crazy one, and used a good selection of my embroidery stitches on my machine, it coped with them well, so you don't have to stick to straight stitches if you don't want too. (I have a Bernina - not sure how other makes would handle it).
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Old 09-04-2010, 02:32 AM
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i did machine quilt my wool "backyard Gathering" quilt, black hand appliqued/queen size. i used the black heirloom Hobbs batting, it was wonderful to quilt! as wonderful as it is to applique with wool; I love working with wool! i machine piece, embroider, applique and quilt wools all the time. (long-arm) if using a regular machine i would think you would definitly need a walking foot, because of the bulk.
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Old 09-04-2010, 02:43 AM
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about the "fulled wool" statement, #4;;;
fulled wool is REALLY GOOD! but is easily the least expensive way to get to use wools...it is very easy to felt wools and there are very expensive wools in thrift stores and yard sales for next to nothing...my hubby and i went to a yard sale just last week lady wanted some items to go away...we left with a large black garbage bag full of mens wool dress coats. all old,dated with a hole here and there. we spent the evening taking them apart. saved all the wonderful buttons, and the pile of wool fabric i have would cost probably over $100 to buy it by the yard (there are many large pieces in a coat)
then into the washing machine with lots of hot-hot water and detergent for wool...i used sythropol because i'm going to over-dye my wools, cold rinse. then into the dryer on hot. out comes wonderful felted wool ready for me to do with as i will, and my cost...$6. the wools in the quilt shop here are $22 a yard, my total yardage estimate for my $6 is about 9 1/2 yards!
and wools are easy to dye so you are not limited in color selections at all

Originally Posted by Sadiemae
I did some googling. Things are things that I read, I have no experience with any of these. What I learned was:
1. You can hand quilt, but it is heavy and may be much easier to machine quilt
2. It is very heavy
3. Some people use sweaters and make felted wool
4. Fulled wool is really good, but extremely expensive and in limited colors
5. Antique wool quilts often had flannel backing
6. Many people use wool applique's on Flannel fabrics
:thumbup: :thumbup:
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Old 09-04-2010, 04:44 AM
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I would think you would need the walking foot.
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Old 09-04-2010, 07:16 AM
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Originally Posted by ckcowl
about the "fulled wool" statement, #4;;;
fulled wool is REALLY GOOD! but is easily the least expensive way to get to use wools...it is very easy to felt wools and there are very expensive wools in thrift stores and yard sales for next to nothing...my hubby and i went to a yard sale just last week lady wanted some items to go away...we left with a large black garbage bag full of mens wool dress coats. all old,dated with a hole here and there. we spent the evening taking them apart. saved all the wonderful buttons, and the pile of wool fabric i have would cost probably over $100 to buy it by the yard (there are many large pieces in a coat)
then into the washing machine with lots of hot-hot water and detergent for wool...i used sythropol because i'm going to over-dye my wools, cold rinse. then into the dryer on hot. out comes wonderful felted wool ready for me to do with as i will, and my cost...$6. the wools in the quilt shop here are $22 a yard, my total yardage estimate for my $6 is about 9 1/2 yards!
and wools are easy to dye so you are not limited in color selections at all
I just did this! I bought a lot of wool yardage at an estate sale. You can tell it was expensive by the feel and weight of it. Now it's all ready to go and I just have to decide what to do with it! Flannel for the backing may be a good idea.
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Old 09-04-2010, 07:29 AM
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Yes you can machine quilt a wool quilt. You need to consider the nature of the fabric you are using.
Thin batting
If I put wool fabric on the back I would make sure it is a thin light weight wool fabric.
Lengthen your stitch to accommodate the extra thickness of the fabric.
I would be sure and use cotton thread.
Walking foot definitely.
Longer stitches if free motion quilting.
Baste well and then do extra pinning in front of pressure feet to help hold layers together.
Practice on a piece first to get the feel of it.
Lots of support to hold the quilt from pulling away from the machine.
Take a class in weight lifting before you start in order to hold up all that weight.....lol
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Old 09-04-2010, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Holice
Yes you can machine quilt a wool quilt. You need to consider the nature of the fabric you are using.
Thin batting
This immediately made me think of Quilter's Dream batting in the Request loft - it's the thinnest. Or their wool batting, designed to resist shrinking (for after you've already felted the wool).

Jan in VA
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