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Thread: Free motion quilting on Front or Back

  1. #1
    Member hisgrace1's Avatar
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    Free motion quilting on Front or Back

    I'm wondering does anyone free motion on the back of the quilt face up? I'm using a solid backing and it seems like it would be easier than the front that is mainly white

  2. #2
    Super Member GEMRM's Avatar
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    You can stitch whichever side of the quilt you want as long as you can be assured your stitching will be where you want it -ie if you need to be careful to stay within a border, you might need to mark that on the backing if you're stitching with the backside up.

  3. #3
    Junior Member Gayle8675309's Avatar
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    I've never fmqed with the back side up before, but I don't see why it wouldn't work.
    Gayle

  4. #4
    Super Member Doggramma's Avatar
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    Excellent idea. I think I'm going to try that.
    Lori

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  5. #5
    Super Member Teddybear Lady's Avatar
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    I've always done it on the front but that's all I've seen on the examples and tutorials. Just wondering how doing it on the back would make it easier. I'm all for easier! I always dread it until I get started, then I'm okay. I think too much and get stressed instead of just tackling it and doing it. haha Let us know what you decide and be sure and post pictures. I'm always learning something on this board.
    Debbie

  6. #6
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    ​Some people put a large floral on the back and outline quilt the flowers for their quilt design. If it is easier to quilt from the back, go for it.

  7. #7
    Super Member ArtsyOne's Avatar
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    No rules - I've done both, depending on whether I'm trying to stay within borders or just do an all-over meander.
    A fabric stash is always missing that one fabric needed to finish the quilt on which you're working.

  8. #8
    Member hisgrace1's Avatar
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    Thank You all...I thought about applying a stencil with a pounce pad on the back and going for it....I will let you know....I am having so much fun with my new Pfaff Expression 4.2....I just wanna quilt quilt quilt......

  9. #9
    Senior Member luana's Avatar
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    It works just fine from the back. They even make a preprinted muslin with lines for quilting. When it is quilted, you wash it and lines lines are gone. I did a Quilt of Valor on the back with meandering and stars on white muslin. Looked great. Good luck and have fun.

  10. #10
    Senior Member sewplease's Avatar
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    This made me think of a book...it may be out of print now:Quilting Back to Front: Fun & Easy No-Mark Techniques.

    Laura

  11. #11
    Super Member katier825's Avatar
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    I've done it. It works well as long as your back stitches are as good as the front (no eyelashes). You just have to be careful that the underside is flat when you get to the edge since you can't see it.

  12. #12
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    I've done it both ways- quilted from the back when seeing the stitches on the top was very difficult- and my quilting design was not going to dictate needing to stay in certain areas (all over edge to edge design-not dependent on staying in certain areas) sometimes it just makes sense to flip it over & quilt as desired.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  13. #13
    Super Member carolaug's Avatar
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    I have seen both done and have done it on a sample. If you use thicker thread, or yarn you would need to flip it. The thicker yarn or thread goes in the bobbin.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by sewplease View Post
    This made me think of a book...it may be out of print now:Quilting Back to Front: Fun & Easy No-Mark Techniques.
    The book is by Larraine Scouler and published by C&T Publishing, Inc

  15. #15
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    I almost always quilt from the back. I use golden threads paper with a needle punched edge to edge design as a stencil and pounce it onto the quilt. It is easier to find a chalk color that shows on a backing then on the front where I am more likely to have a mix of lights and darks.

    For some threads like Superior Rainbows I get much better results this way because they are in the bobbin instead of the top and break less easily.

  16. #16
    Senior Member SusanSusan33's Avatar
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    I heard of doing it but haven't tried it yet. It seems like a good idea if it'll be east to get "lost" on the front and forget where you've quilted already...

  17. #17
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    I have done that before. Just make sure all you tensions are set correctly. If I ever get the courage to put blinky on the back of a quilt, I will stitch that on top with doing quilting on my Bernina !!
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  18. #18
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    You should ALWAYS FMQ on the front!!!! --the quilting police ;-).

    Do what makes you happiest. Sometimes the bobbin-side of the stitch isn't as pretty, so make sure your bobbin is behavin'. But otherwise, there are no rules.

  19. #19
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    Just a side tip about the Golden Threads paper. You can find the exact same paper at art supply stores for about half the price.

  20. #20
    Senior Member sewplease's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaA View Post
    Just a side tip about the Golden Threads paper. You can find the exact same paper at art supply stores for about half the price.
    Thanks for mentioning this! What name/kind of paper should we look for?
    Laura

  21. #21
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    I can't think of any reason for not doing it. It would be very interesting for sure. I have thought about doing it several times but just haven't quite gotten it done. I have learned to do starts and stops that are not obvious on either the front or back. If you use the same color thread on the top and bottom it should not create a problem. Be sure to let us know how it goes.

  22. #22
    Super Member Monika's Avatar
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    I've done it and is works out fine. Once though, I changed my mind about how I wanted to quilt it AFTER I had pin-basted on the front and had to re-baste it on the back. I suppose that would be a plus for spray basting......you could more easily change your mind.

  23. #23
    Super Member fireworkslover's Avatar
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    I've done both ways. If I'm using a matching thread on black or near black, I'll often fmq with the back up, since that is usually a print fabric and I can see where I'm going easier. Try it both ways and do whatever works best for you. Try out some sample sandwiches and see. If you can make your sandwiches out of the same fabrics as your quilt, you'll be able to see what it'll look like on your quilt.

  24. #24
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    Sometimes it is hard to trace the design with a stencil, dark and lights in the print. I just tried exactly what you are asking a few days ago. It worked fine, but I think some designs will come out with the design reversed. (not sure)
    Mother yourself just as you would your own children, you will be surprised how much better you feel...Debbie Marie

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