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Thread: Hand quilting and batiks?

  1. #1
    Senior Member teddysmom's Avatar
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    Hand quilting and batiks?

    SOMEWHERE I heard SOMEONE say that batiks are difficult to quilt by hand. Any idea if this is true?

  2. #2
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I know my hands hurt after trying to do some needle turn applique on a quilt that was batiks. I can't imagine trying to quilt an entire quilt by hand... Oh my hands just ache thinking about it.
    I suggest you make a small sandwich out of some scraps and give it a try. Often what some find difficult , someone else has no problem.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Hinterland's Avatar
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    Many hand quilters say batiks are hard to needle, but I've never had a problem, with one exception. I wouldn't use Warm and Natural as the batting. I also have no problem appliquéing with batiks.

    The only time it was hard to quilt, was when I had to hand quilt with batiks on the top and the backing. I could have used a jackhammer to get the needle through the sandwich.

    If you try it, keep the tension a little loose in the hoop.

    good luck!

    Janet

  4. #4
    Senior Member carolstickelmaier's Avatar
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    I just hand basted a king size batik quilt.....hands are so sore I can't hold a pencil....I will admit I used a larger needle as I was basting but to help the needle go through the batik I had a bar of soap near by. Rubbing the needle on the bar helps it slide much easier. By the way it took two days to baste. My stitches were approx 1/2 inch as I wanted to do special quilting on it....make a long story short....I machine tied the whole thing! Not happy but I don't mind the look and it is DONE! So would I do it again? Never say never but right now the answer is a resounding NO!

  5. #5
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    I have never had trouble hand quilting batiks. I have had more trouble hand quilting warm and natural batting.

  6. #6
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Batiks have a tighter weave than other fabrics, so it can be more work to get a needle through. For needle turn applique, it can also be harder to get a smooth curved folded edge. However, harder doesn't mean impossible.

  7. #7
    Super Member nygal's Avatar
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    I've never hand quilted batiks but I can tell they do "feel' different than regular cotton fabrics.
    When it seems like the world is falling to pieces remember that the pieces are falling into place. We are nearing closer to the End Times.

  8. #8
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    Batiks on front only, backing a different cotton.
    No Warm and Natural batting, I use wool preferably.
    Change my needle fairly often.
    Just echoing the consensus of others.

    Jan in VA
    Jan in VA
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    peacefully colors my world.
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/members...bums19552.html

  9. #9
    Senior Member Skyangel's Avatar
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    I have a Hawaiian Applique wall hanging top that my mother did in the 70s and recently gave me to finish. It's brown and gold so I wanted to add a bit of color. I added a batik border, and then the same batik on the back and basted it for hand quilting. I even went and took a class with Luxine Neuman (The Thimblelady) to learn her technique. When I started quilting, it looked so flat and my stitches were not penetrating the back except for a thread or two. I went and talked to the ladies at the shop where I took the class (One of the employees is now certified to teach her method) and the consesus was that it was because of the batik backing - batiks are more tightly woven and harder to penetrate with a needle making small stitches. I tore out all my stitches (bummer, I had completed a large section of the center) and have replaced all the batik backing with plain cotton and a thin soft poly batting (the first on was cotton, not sure if Warm and Natural). It's basted again but I haven't started quilting it. I would never try hand quilting a batik again (other than the borders on this piece).

  10. #10
    Super Member Gladys's Avatar
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    Thanks guys for all this information. I'll remember it.

  11. #11
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    I'll be the exception to the rule. Recently finished an over-sized twin log cabin. Top and backing different batiks. Warm & Natural batting. Hand quilted. Didn't notice that it was any more or less difficult or painful than any other quilt that I've hand quilted. And I hand quilt all my quilts. I do use Roxanne needles - #10 or #11 - and Thread Heaven. I also use a Thimblelady thimble and push with the pad of my finger vs. the top. Not sure if that helps or not but it's what's comfortable for me.

  12. #12
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    I've never seen this tip on here, so I apologize in advance if I'm just repeating something. If I am having trouble getting the needle through the fabric, I rub it through my hair and it seems to penetrate like butter. I think it's the static in the hair.
    Sue

  13. #13
    Senior Member Hinterland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJ Quilter View Post
    I'll be the exception to the rule. Recently finished an over-sized twin log cabin. Top and backing different batiks. Warm & Natural batting. Hand quilted. Didn't notice that it was any more or less difficult or painful than any other quilt that I've hand quilted. And I hand quilt all my quilts. I do use Roxanne needles - #10 or #11 - and Thread Heaven. I also use a Thimblelady thimble and push with the pad of my finger vs. the top. Not sure if that helps or not but it's what's comfortable for me.
    Are you using the Thimblelady technique, too? She keeps the quilt sandwich so loose she can probably quilt through anything!

    I push with the finger pad, using a Roxanne thimble. I use John James or Foxglove Studio size 11s.


    Janet

  14. #14
    Senior Member cowpie2's Avatar
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    I just finished hand quilting an all batik quilt (front and back) and did not notice any significant difficulty quilting. Of course I echo quilt and do not go over seams and I'm careful about batting that I use. This one was Hobbs 80/20. Hobbs wool is even nicer for hand quilting.

  15. #15
    Senior Member QuiltingCrazie's Avatar
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    I just hand quilted a quilt that was batiks, warm and natural and cotton on the back. No issues quilted no different then my others.
    *Rachel*

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