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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 zig-zag 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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    I do like a hoop for hand quilting as it keeps the back from getting wrinkles in it. I hoop an area taut and then gently press the center down a bit so there is enough give in the hooped area to load my needle with a rocking stitch.

  3. #3
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    if your quilt is well basted you can quilt without a hoop. I do it that way, largest i have done is a double size quilt. I find it is easier than using a hoop.

  4. #4
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    I have a friend that does lovely hand quilting without using a hoop.

    She does it one stitch at a time.

  5. #5
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    I get a better result with a hoop. Could you borrow a hoop to try it out and then decide?
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  6. #6
    Junior Member CurliQ's Avatar
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    I don't use a hoop. My stitches are much more controlled without one.
    ~Sharon

  7. #7
    Super Member leaha's Avatar
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    I do not use a Hoop I just do lap quilting like Georgia Bonesteel I have a hoop a frame and a couple of other gadgets for hand quilting, and do not use any of them, just be careful you do not quilt in your jeans or what ever you are wearing, lol been there done that!
    dare to dream

  8. #8
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    I like using a hoop as I work two handed, one underneath and one on top and pass the needle between them. I can balance the hoop so it stays in place and I don't need to be hanging on to it as a stitch. I do needlepoint and cross stitch the same way.
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

  9. #9
    Power Poster Boston1954's Avatar
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    I have always used a hoop, but there are many who can do it without.
    Life is not a movie. No one is going to yell "CUT" when you make a mistake. - Anne L. Fulton

    I am from the South....39 miles south of Boston.

  10. #10
    Power Poster sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    I prefer no hoop... but I don't hand quilt all that much.
    http://www.etsy.com/shop/sewbizgirl
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  11. #11
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    I baste on my machine in a 4 inch grid with water solvable thread on top,regular thread in the bobbin. I lap quilt without a hoop. If I use a hoop...I stitch 10 stitches to an inch( also using a spoon). Without a hoop..I do 8 stitches to the inch. I’m not a show quilter,so 8 stitches are fine with me.
    Life may not be the party we planned for,but while we are here we should dance!

  12. #12
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    LOL my attempts are looking more like 3 stitches to an inch so far! A little more practice needed, regardless of hoops...

  13. #13
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    Hang on, do you count the stitches on both sides? In which case it's 6! Phew

  14. #14
    Super Member KalamaQuilts's Avatar
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    stitches per inch isn't law, consistency is
    the shorter the needle the more stitches you will get. that is why quilting or betweens are so short. Just keep rocking the needle.
    I learned to embroider first, with a little hoop, then went to needlepoint with a bigger hoop
    so hand quilting seemed hoop natural!

    I have an 18" oval and a 12" round, like both. It will be what you get used to I expect. Good basting will be key either way.

  15. #15
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    If you don’t have a hoop try it without ( you might be better off basting with Needle and thread instead of pin basting- I generally use large, long stitches and baste in a grid about 2” apart) if you find it difficult to quilt without then maybe borrow a hoop from someone to try it out. If you like the hoop better invest in one. Some people love using a hoop, some prefer a floor frame and some just hold the quilt on their lap. It’s all a personal choice.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

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