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Thread: Do I need a quilt hoop for hand quilting?

  1. #1
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    Do I need a quilt hoop for hand quilting?

    More questions! Is a quilt hoop necessary for hand quilting? Is hand quilting without one a thing, and how does it compare?

    I guess the basting method may be relevant here? I am planning on pin-basting the quilt, I could potentially heringbone stitch it but have no intention whatsoever of using those sprays or sticky backings. So I might need the hoop to keep it all in place?

    Also, my quilt top is a bit, er, not exactly 100% flat, so I will be wanting to distribute the slight extra bits evenly rather than going for perfectly lined up (I know, I know, but I'm not aiming for professional show quality here and my chances of getting it in a straighter line if I try again are very low...) Which makes me think a hoop might result in it all going even more skew-whiff?

  2. #2
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    If you haven't sandwiched it together yet, I recommend you use the two board/swimming noodle method and baste the layers together. Then, a sharp needle, waxed quilting thread, a thimble, some beewax and your lap should be sufficient. Good Luck.

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    I just wanted to say: yes, you do need a quilt for hand quilting (re: the title of your thread)

    Jane Quilter's recommendation to use the pool noodles is great! I just tried this myself and my goodness, what took me so long?? Don't forget to pin the edge of the quilt to the noodles before you roll it. That part is key.

    Have you considered Elmer's gluing your sandwich? I only glue baste, but I haven't tried hand quilting it yet. I don't imagine it would be that hard if you thin your glue and spread it out instead of leaving little dots. Elmer's washes out completely and I love it. I would say try it without a hoop and if you hate it, get a hoop

  4. #4
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    I usually pin baste my quilts; hand quilt both with or without a hoop. I have learned over the years, if it is a large quilt (queen/king size) that the pins do add considerable weight when having to shift everything around. Thread basting is much less weight. That said, I did just pin baste a large king because, for me, it's quicker and I need to get this thing done!

    I prefer using a hoop mainly to easily find where I've left off quilting in any given session. And it does tend to make it easier, I think, to smooth out any excess be it on the top or the bottom of the quilt.

  5. #5
    Super Member luvstoquilt's Avatar
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    I agree with NJ Quilter. I love using a hoop but I am going to give those pool noodles a try!
    "You must do the thing you think you cannot do"....E. Roosevelt

    Sharon
    Yorkville, IL

  6. #6
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    I need a hoop for the method of hand quilting I use, but many here on the board hand quilt without a hoop. Try different ways until you find what works for you. I would not recommend pin basting if you're using a hoop, as the pins will get in the way of tightening the hoop.

    I've been board basting for a while; is the noodle method the same? Where do you get the noodles? It seems they'd be easier to handle than the boards. I've almost knocked holes in my walls a few times, LOL.
    Lisa

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    I machine baste with water solvable thread on top;regular bobbin thread...in a 4 inch grid. I lap quilt without a hoop and get 8 stitches per inch. If I use a hoop,I stitch 10 stitches per inch.
    Life may not be the party we planned for,but while we are here we should dance!

  8. #8
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    Love your missing word topic. LOL
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  9. #9
    Junior Member stitch678's Avatar
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    I prefer a hoop or even better, a q- snap floor frame. With that , l dont't baste... l simply start in the center , then work my way to edges , rehooping in a circular pattern ( so there is some overlap when in a new spot). I pin baste when using a lap hoop, and simply remove avy pins that l find in the way. You can also " big stitch baste".

  10. #10
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    I got my pool noodles from the W big box store for 97c each and they're already pretty long so how many you need depends on how big the quilts are that you normally make? You could always cut them to make shorter sections to join together. You're supposed to stick some PVC pipe in them to make them completely straight because they're kind of bendy with nothing in the center. You can also have the PVC cut into sections so that everything is smaller sections and you can join them to the lengths that you need. Would be lighter than boards, I think?

    That being said - I was in too much of a hurry to sandwich and I used the handle from my Swiffer mop to join the noodles together Yes, it was kind of bendy, but I made it work and it was still pretty easy! I'll get the PVC when I have time to go to the hardware store.

    I've read about basting with water soluble thread so that you don't have to unbaste anything when you're done. It sounds fantastic.

  11. #11
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    If you use glue make sure it is Elmer's Washable School Glue.
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  12. #12
    Super Member Darcyshannon's Avatar
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    I have boards for basting but didn’t think of using to hand quilt. I do have a hoop but haven’t used it yet. I really should try since I like the look of hand quilting.

  13. #13
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    I have a friend who does not use a hoop but I use a round hoop. Recently I resurrected the oval one from the past and it frustrated me no end. Was glad when I got past that one! Love my round hoop that I can turn to best advantage and I can smooth out any excess backing as I work across the quilt. I loosely pin baste and start quilting in the middle.

  14. #14
    Super Member Fabric Galore's Avatar
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    I love this idea! I use water solvable thread to baste my embroidery projects but I never thought of using it for machine basting my quilts.

  15. #15
    Super Member Fabric Galore's Avatar
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    I hand quilted a queen size quilt and the quilting design ran on the bias in parts. I found I needed a hoop to keep my fabric squared up. I love quilting without a frame because it goes faster for me but sometimes the hoop is necessary depending on the quilting pattern.

  16. #16
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    I have always used the method that Sharon Shambers uses---boards and baste.. There is a video specifically for hand quilting. You will find it on you tube. It keeps all wrinkles out of the backing and works wonders!!
    Then I do use a 24' hoop to quilt my quilts. It is a little more work to get the quilt ready for hand quilting, but saves so much frustration in wrinkles in the backing...

  17. #17
    Senior Member donna13350's Avatar
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    The first two quilts I made were hand quilted without a frame or hoop, and they turned out fine. There are different advantages to both methods, but I like the ability to take it with me and quilt..I made them while my daughter was in sports and I spent a lot of time sitting..so I brought my quilt.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Faintly Artistic's Avatar
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    I agree that board basting is the way to go. I use that method and thread baste all my quilts. I hand quilt with no hoop or frame with no issues. Good basting is key as well as running my underneath hand over the back periodically to smooth and check for puckers.

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