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Thread: How Many Stitches Per Inch?

  1. #1
    Junior Member txstitcher's Avatar
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    DH is learning to hand quilt. (I am ecstatic as I only like to piece.)

    What is standard stitches per inch for industrial stitches?

  2. #2
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    I'm confused as what you mean by industrial with handquilting. Starting off usually 8-9 stitches per inch. 12 per inch is expert.

  3. #3
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    I'm also confused on this one!!
    I agree with sewcrafty though- 12 is considered expert. I've always thought it's better to have them consistent (even), no matter how many per inch.
    Also needle size can make a difference, the higher the needle count, the smaller the needle. I use size 10 and my stitches are pretty small. But not expert lol
    It takes practice, just like everything else! :)

  4. #4
    Super Member TonnieLoree's Avatar
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    I'd be lucky to get 3 per inch. I tried this once and failed miserably. :-(

  5. #5
    Super Member janedee's Avatar
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    its the 'quilt police' that dictate how many stitches per inch - do what you are comfortable with as long as they are more or less the same size I don't personally think it matters

  6. #6
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    I agree - eveness is much more important than the lenght of the stitches. Skills will improve with practice and the stitch length will change.
    Hand quilting is like hand writing - every individual has it's personal style!

  7. #7
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    the consistancy is much more important than the number of stitches per inch- they tend to get smaller and smaller as you get better- even 5 stitches per inch is fine as long as the stitches all look even/balanced.

    industrial sewing(done in factories on big noisy machines) and hand stitching are two very different animals, no one understands what you meant by the industrial part of your question...
    unless you are wanting your hubby's quilting to look like it came from JC Penney's???

  8. #8
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    sorry-started the day double posting again

  9. #9
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    Having them evenly spaced and about the same length is the important thing. Anyone counting stitches per inch has too much free time IMHO.

  10. #10
    Senior Member lvaughan's Avatar
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    I have read that 12 stitches per inch is what a hand stitcher strives for. I can't imagine being able to achieve that, I have been ripping out a quilt I stitched on my longarm at 12 spi and it is difficult to get out much less put in by hand.

  11. #11
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonnieLoree
    I'd be lucky to get 3 per inch. I tried this once and failed miserably. :-(
    DITTO!!!!!!!

    ;)

  12. #12
    Super Member sewingladydi's Avatar
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    I just strive to make the stitches even. That is more attractive to me than teeny, tiny stitches.

    I think there isn't anything cuter than a well-done big stitch quilt.

  13. #13
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    I have been handquilting for 40 years. I was involved in a quilt documentation project in the 80s where we hired curators from the DAR musuem in Washington DC to look at the quilts. The first thing I learned from them is to count the stitches on the top and the back. At that rate I average between ten and twelve per inch. Even if your stitches are bigger being even and consistant is the most important part. A lot depends on the density of the fabric and the thickness and density of the batting.

  14. #14
    Super Member Jennifer22206's Avatar
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    For me, I'd strive for consistency rather than a certain number of stitches per inch. I've only been handquilting a little while, and I get about 5-8 per inch on a great day.

    That being said, I'm really starting to love the look of the "big stitch" quilt.

  15. #15
    Junior Member txstitcher's Avatar
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    To clarify industrial stitches, my quilting instructor said that "working" quilts were sometimes quilted with industrial stitches -- stitches larger than those stitches on "fancy" quilts.

    She said industrial stitches were just longer stitches.

    Hope that helps.

    Thanks for all the replies. We won't worry with stitch count now! :)

  16. #16
    okiepastor's Avatar
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    That is WEIRD--to use the term "industrial" for that--usually called primitive or country stitching! :>)
    In MO., the old quilters(yep,the dreaded QUILT POLICE!) derided those big stitches as "toenail catchers"

  17. #17
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    I agree with all fine Quilters on the board, the more you practic the smaller the stich. 12 to the inch takes time, the needle has a lot to do with it also.

  18. #18
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by txstitcher
    To clarify industrial stitches, my quilting instructor said that "working" quilts were sometimes quilted with industrial stitches -- stitches larger than those stitches on "fancy" quilts.

    She said industrial stitches were just longer stitches.

    Hope that helps.

    Thanks for all the replies. We won't worry with stitch count now! :)
    The most important thing for me is top enjoy what I'm doing. My stitches differ from the first needle stitch to the last and am I going to worry about it absolutely not! I'll sometimes even do a practice sandwich to try to get in the rythym.

    I'm enjoying what I'm doing and that's what counts.

  19. #19
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    If you say that you must do 12 stitches per inch then he will give up. I have seen few hand quilters that could achieve that. And.....as been said above it depends on how you count - what you see or top and back.
    Strive for evenness first then work to smaller titches.
    A good pracetice piece is 1/8 or 1/6th inch gingham check. Gives a good guide for even stitches.

    Also appears to be mixing apples and oranges.....Is the post about hand or machine quilting.

  20. #20
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    the word "industrial" is confusing since it is followed by "hand quilting"

  21. #21
    Super Member justwannaquilt's Avatar
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    Use the word Utilitarian or Utility or big stitch quilting it wont confuse them!

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