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Thread: Ever "too much" quilting?

  1. #26
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    Gorgeous! Please consider outlining those cats! Then you could do a "meandering" stitch over the rest of the quilt. I've always been told you just want to have the batting sewn every 4 to 6 inches to hold it in place. Please let us see the finished results.

  2. #27
    Super Member jdavis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justwannaquilt
    I personally don't like a lot of quilting on MY quilts. I have seen some very beautiful quilts that are COVERED in quilting though! I wonder if they are more for show? I think the more dense the quilting is the stiffer the quilt becomes, I wouldn't want to lay under a "blanket" of thread. I might hang it on my wall though.

    To each their own though right?
    This pretty-much sums up my own thoughts exactly!

  3. #28
    Super Member mar32428's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moreland
    It seems as Long Arm Quilting becomes more and more accessible, the amount of quilting seen on laq quilts has exploded. I have to sometimes wonder if the quilting is trying to outdo the piecing/fabric/design. I am not a laq and I am not taking potshots at those of you who are, but I just wondered if anyone else ever thought about this. I am not convinced that having quilting on every piece of the fabric that is visible is necessarily the "best way"--I tend to feel like it becomes "one upmanship" between piecer and quilter.
    Do you think as we get past the initial rapture of now being able to quilt as much as we want to/can, that there will be more balance? Perhaps I'm the only one who thinks it is often out of balance???
    I always thot that in the beginning, quilting was intended to hold the layers together in a discrete manner or design. It seems to me that later on the quilting is almost outdoing the design and I don't care for those quilts. Why would we have shadow stitching if not to enhance the design?

  4. #29
    Super Member grann of 6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moreland
    It seems as Long Arm Quilting becomes more and more accessible, the amount of quilting seen on laq quilts has exploded. I have to sometimes wonder if the quilting is trying to outdo the piecing/fabric/design. I am not a laq and I am not taking potshots at those of you who are, but I just wondered if anyone else ever thought about this. I am not convinced that having quilting on every piece of the fabric that is visible is necessarily the "best way"--I tend to feel like it becomes "one upmanship" between piecer and quilter.
    Do you think as we get past the initial rapture of now being able to quilt as much as we want to/can, that there will be more balance? Perhaps I'm the only one who thinks it is often out of balance???
    I agree. I don't know anything about LAQ and will never have one in my lifetime, but some of the quilts are gorgeous. I just think that it has kind of gotten out of hand. I prefer to do every part of my quilt, not send it out to someone to trust in their judgement on something that I have worked many hours doing. I guess it goes back to my upbringing, and that my mother was forever saying, "If you want something done right,do it yourself." That is not to say the LAQ's are doing it wrong, but that they can't read my mind and I can't always put into words exactly what I want. Sometimes I don't even know till I do it and don't like it.

  5. #30

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    I guess I am the oddball because I hand quilt and have a thing against the quilting frenzy overkill I see in a lot of quilts. I did a deer quilt and what I did was to outline the animals as this sort of puffed them out a bit, and used green to meander through the trees, and just used the fabric itself as a guide to quilting. Blocks I did in the usual 1/4 inch from each seam. I did machine quilt in the ditch, but tore it all out as I handquilted as I found it puckered badly with the machine. I have a Janome 6600 and find it difficult to actually machine quilt on it unless I use a fusible batting. Any suggestions out there as to how I can machine quilt without going bonkers over the puckering???

  6. #31
    Senior Member foxxigrani's Avatar
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    I agree, but then I am with some of you, to much quilting takes away from the piece. You look at the quilting instead of the quilt. I personally don't like a lot of quilting. But to each his own(or her). As far as the leopard, yes I think also SID is perfect for that piece, and may I add that is beautiful, and a beginner? Wow...

    Rita

  7. #32
    Super Member quiltmom04's Avatar
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    I think that there needs to be a balance between the quilting and the use. The more quilting there is, the stiffer it feels. I would think those extrodinary quilted mastrpieces would feel like a heavy piece of cardboard if really used as a cover. I think a bed quilt should have a lot less quilting to make it 'snuggly'. That being said, I'm absolutely in awe of the quilt artists like Sharon Schaumber and Diane McCuen, who can produce such fabulous work.

  8. #33
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    Just last week the Fons and Porter show which aired here on our PBS featured a Long Arm Quilter who demoed quilting that was way "over the edge" as far as I am concerned. Some where in that program I heard it took her two months to quilt her quilt. Just not for me!!!!!!

  9. #34
    Super Member Lucy90's Avatar
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    I'm with not quilting too much. I have seen some beautiful quilts and they are over quilted and actually hard and not soft to the touch. I would not want to cuddle up with it or even have it on a bed.

  10. #35
    Super Member Farm Quilter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SharonAnne
    I am glad for this discussion because as a new quilter, I have been baffled about the quilting part. Granted, I have yet to take a class, but I have done a lot of looking at pictures on this board. I love each and every one of the quilts/projects I have seen, and the quilting of feathers, curliques, etc is exquisite, but still, I am afraid to do it. As an example, I am attaching a picture that I still do not know what to do with. I think it is beautiful "as is" and am scared to ruin the simplicity and beauty of the cat by running thread all over him. Small projects such as potholders and placemats can "take" and often demand a lot of stippling, but I want this quilt to be natural. So, my dilemna is - should I or shouldn't I do anything but SID on this one. Can't make up my mind, thus this has sat as a UFO since February, 2010. I don't need it until Christmas, so I still have some time to deal with it. And this is my problem with all my projects. Is less more? Is more too much? Does this come with experience or is it a personal like/dislike thing? Thanks for listening and for your potential comments. Oops, how do I put my photo here?
    I would outline the tigers and some of the leaves in the tiger squares. In the blue, I would copy some of the flowers with leaves. All the rest I would do in the ferny leaves shown on the fabric. I frequently take the designs in the fabric and translate them into the quilting I do, both on my own quilts and on customer's quilts.

    When I quilt for customers, I will suggest different designs for their quilts if I think what they are asking for will detract from the beauty of the piecing. Most of my customers now just give me a price point and let me do what I want. It's nice to be trusted, sometimes scary since beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but my goal is to always enhance the beauty of their piecing with my quilting. I'll be the first to admit, I love McTavishing!!! Rarely do it on customer quilts because it is very time consuming and expensive for them and uses a TON of thread! Wholecloth quilting is the time for my quilting to shine, on pieced quilts the quilting should just let the piecing shine!

  11. #36
    Super Member Maride's Avatar
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    I think each quilt "speaks" for itself. Many designs are made to use a lot of quilting, like if there are big empty blocks separating pieced ones. There a quilter can demonstrate her abilities. Other quilts have such complicated piecing that minimal quilting is required to concentrate on the piecing. I believe that if the quilt is well made, you look at it and notice the piecing, and then have your eye drawn to the quilting, unless is a whole cloth, of course.

    Let's not forget that quilting is an art, no matter if it is done on a domestic or a long arm. It is almost like drawing, but harder. What I frown upon is long arm quilted items done with computarized machines, where all you do is mark the boundaries and go to lunch, competing in the same category as a regular long armer, who made hers free hand or marked.

    I always prefer to quilt rather than piecing, but I do it on my domestic machine.

  12. #37
    Senior Member Shelley's Avatar
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    LA quilter here - and just my opinion. I'll duck and run when done!

    If a quilt is stiff after quilting, the problem is the combination of the quilting AND they type of batting used. You can 'quilt to death' wool batting and it won't get stiff.

    Some quilts require lots of quilting because of piecing issues. If a quilt isn't square and straight, we can sometimes get them there but it takes a lot of 'controlling' stitches. I've had quilts come in with 5 extra inches of border - on each side. I can disguise that, but I have to guilt it a lot to make it look like it's supposed to.

    The quilting is supposed to be a balancing act. If I have a heavily-pieced-busy-fabrics quilt in front of me, I can't add much in the way of quilting to that quilt - so I usually suggest an allover. If I have a quilt with lots of blank spaces, we can do some really cool stuff - with the customer's permission.

    I have a group of ladies that piece in the studio one day a week, and sometimes they make the same quilt. One lady always wants 'less quilting' - until she sees what her friend gets with 'go for it'!!

    We just had our county fair. There were some beautifully pieced quilts with quilting on them that just made me want to cry. These quilt could have been award winners, but the poor quilting and lack of quilting detracted from the top.

    I'm ducking and running now!!

  13. #38
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    For those of you who do not send out your quilts or LA your quilts, you may want to sign on to a couple of the LA lists/boards. It will open your eyes to the LA quilting world whether you want to do that or not. Most of the time the customer calls the shots. The LA quilters love it when the customer says do whatever you think is best. So when looking at the quilting as over top, remember it's what the customer wanted probably. The drape of a quilt is also dependent on the batting type. It's not just the quilting. HIH Thank goodness everyone has their choices of what to do on their quilts. LOL

  14. #39
    Junior Member ledraj's Avatar
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    I think the quilting is really beautiful and shows great skill. However, I like the old fashioned look of the quilt
    puffing up between the quilting, therefore there is too much quilting on a lot of quilts I see. I prefer less quilting and more of the patchwork to be the star.

  15. #40
    Senior Member irma tapia's Avatar
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    What is SID?

  16. #41
    Super Member grann of 6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by irma tapia
    What is SID?
    Stitch in the Ditch

  17. #42
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    I am a hand quilter mostly but have had a few quilted on the laq and love how it is heavier than hand quilted. But I have always taken great pride in my handiwork and will continue to do so. What is happening now is that I have so many quilt tops I will take forever to hand quilt so Am going to let a friend who is needing some income because her DH is not well or working. I always look at the quilt first and then the stitching so not distracted by the amount of quilting. I enjoyed reading this post.

  18. #43
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shelley
    LA quilter here - and just my opinion. I'll duck and run when done!

    If a quilt is stiff after quilting, the problem is the combination of the quilting AND they type of batting used. You can 'quilt to death' wool batting and it won't get stiff.

    (snipped stuff here)

    We just had our county fair. There were some beautifully pieced quilts with quilting on them that just made me want to cry. These quilt could have been award winners, but the poor quilting and lack of quilting detracted from the top.

    I'm ducking and running now!!
    Come back here!! LOL

    I agree with the batting making more difference in the stiffness of the quilt than the quilting does to a point. I'm betting the people complaining about too much quilting making the quilt stiff are using Warm and Natural. That batting gets stiff as a board if you quilt it very close.

    Then there's micro quilting. There's a gorgeous wall quilt being shown in quilt shows in this area that has trees and a stream with a bridge over it. It is intensly quilted and quite stiff. But that's the way the maker intended for it to turn out.

    I saw a Vintage Valentine quilt in the quilt show that the quilting pretty much ruined the quilt. Vintage Valentine is a gorgeous, album style applique quilt and the maker did an all over, smallish meander.

  19. #44
    Senior Member irma tapia's Avatar
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    Duh.......thanks

  20. #45
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    I'll second (3rd, 4th) the statement that the batting is what makes for a very stiff quilt when heavily quilted. I free motion my own quilts, and I tend to do pretty heavy coverage (it's what I like) but I do not have stiff quilts -- they get crinkly-- again what I like. But they have a very nice drape.

    I'll use all kinds of different batts -- what ever is on sale. But I always do a trial before I take on the whole quilt, so I have a sense of how it will feel, shrinkage and crinkling after washing and drying, etc.

    Something I see often on quilt blogs, usually with enthusiastic beginners, is heavy quilting in one area, and completely unquilted in other areas -- to my eye it's not a very pleasing effect, specially after some real world use. I also cringe at very wide borders left completely unquilted. I've been guilty of that one when I was hand quitlting and just ready to be done with a project. But the real purpose of a wide border (other than to meet the bed size requirement) is to showcase some mad quilting skilz, not to just hang there looking limp and neglected.

  21. #46
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    Here's my two cents worth... Please allow the beauty of your pieced quilts to shine through; do not let them be quilted to death, however you choose to quilt them.

  22. #47
    Super Member Butterflyblue's Avatar
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    This may sound whiny, and I have nothing against long arm quilters (personally or that the option exists), so I apologize if this strikes someone the wrong way.

    I went to a local show, and probably 80% of the quilts there were quilted by one particular longarmer (I know, because they credited her). The work was beautiful, don't get me wrong. But I felt like it gave an unfair advantage to some of the quilts that were actually quite plain otherwise. It seems like the person with either enough money to own a longarm or enough money to hire out all their quilting has an advantage at shows over the person who quilts their own on their machine (which I do, but I'm just not good enough yet to compete with professionals) or handquilts (because so few have the time to quilt as densely as a longarmer can. And it seems like who has the "best quilt" as determined by placing in the show shouldn't depend on who has more money.

    I guess I feel like the fair thing to do would be to have separate categories for quilts that are hand quilted, home machine quilted, and hired out. Maybe some shows do that. I've really only been to the one.

  23. #48
    Senior Member Shelley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Butterflyblue

    I guess I feel like the fair thing to do would be to have separate categories for quilts that are hand quilted, home machine quilted, and hired out. Maybe some shows do that. I've really only been to the one.
    Most shows do separate those things out. In the big machine quilting shows, they even split out between the hand guided systems from the computer guided systems.

    The goal is to have the quilting match the quilt, to have it complement the top. Too much quilting is just as bad as a beautifully pieced, intricate top that has been tied with yarn. (You don't want to get me started!!)

  24. #49
    Super Member quilt3311's Avatar
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    I think the densely quilted quilts are mostly for show or to hang. I've seen some stunning examples of this and think they are mainly for entering a show.
    I've done heavy quilting on a few, but do not use those as bedding.
    When I do bedding, I pretty much put the same amount of quilting on as I would if I were still able to hand quilt the quilts.

  25. #50
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    I am a mid arm quilter (Part time) and I have the same feeling. I have been to shows and I think the "too much" quilting is beautiful. It is in another class, art quilts. For me, I like to look at them, but as far as me doing them, or wanting them, I'll do the ones that want to let the fabric and the design shine through. The excess quilting makes the quilt very stiff usually and not one that you are going to want to use. They are the ones that will be hung on the wall and admired from there. That type of quilting isn't meant for every quilt. I do admire the LAQ who can do that kind of work and do it so beautifully.

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