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Newbie quilt question - using embroidery outline stitch for neat hand-quilting?

Newbie quilt question - using embroidery outline stitch for neat hand-quilting?

Old 10-28-2019, 06:13 AM
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Default Newbie quilt question - using embroidery outline stitch for neat hand-quilting?

Hi all, I知 a new quilter working on a sisters choice table runner kit. The piecing has come together nicely and I知 finally at the stage of quilting. I知 hand quilting it. I am nervous that my quilting stitches are too messy and uneven and I知 wondering if any of you ever use embroidery outline or stem stitches (which are very neat) to quilt instead of standard quilting stitches when quilting by hand. I have a lot more experience with embroidery.

I searched the web and can稚 find much on this topic. I mostly see advice about adding embroidered designs to quilt tops. I知 instead thinking of using a standard embroidery stitch in place of the standard quilt stitch. It seems I could do an outline stitch with 50 weight quilt thread and it will turn out neater than using a quilting stitch.

Teresa
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Old 10-28-2019, 06:43 AM
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First of all welcome to the QB from SE Michigan! The purpose of quilting a project it to stabilize it all and all parts of the quilt. The embroidery you are suggesting is a great idea. You may still need to go outward from your focal point of the embroidery. If you are concerned about how even your stitching is this might help. There is a product called "Tiger Tape", when I first began hand quilting I used it to insure my stitches were even. the tape is marked is such a way that you will get a nice and even 12 stitches per inch or 15 stitches per inch, depending which one you buy. I still have a large roll of it here. I am now using it to teach my GD how to quilt even stitches. Here is a link for it:
https://www.amazon.com/Tiger-Tape-4-...2273681&sr=8-7 I hope this helps you some.
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Old 10-28-2019, 07:06 AM
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I would not recommend using embroidery stitches for quilting unless it is a simple running stitch like Sashiko which essentially is the quilting stitch and used quite a bit in big stitch quilting. I think a stem stitch would overpower your piecing if used as a quilting stitch, especially if you use a heavy perle cotton thread or floss. Also many embroidery stitches are not meant to be viewed from the back and some of them aren't very pretty from the backside. Remember that your stitches show on the back as well as the front. And one last thing to mention, with embroidery stitches you are going through a single layer of fabric or maybe a couple of layers if you are embellishing applique. The embroidery stitches you are very comfortable with may become very uncomfortable when trying to do them through multiple layers of fabric (when you go over seam allowances) and batting. I would think it would quickly become an effort in frustration.

Just use a regular hand quilting thread and go for it. No one will ever notice that your stitches aren't all perfect or the same length, including you, once the piece is completed. What you view as imperfect when you are working on it and viewing it from inches away won't be noticeable once the piece is completed and viewed from a normal distance of a couple of feet. The only way you will get good at hand quilting is to just do it. Don't be afraid to mark your topper so you have lines to follow or use masking tape. You can also use the tiger tape that juliasb mentioned but I never did. I did use 1/4" masking tape a lot to quilt 1/4" away from my seams.

Last edited by feline fanatic; 10-28-2019 at 07:09 AM.
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Old 10-28-2019, 07:17 AM
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To add to comments, look up big stitch quilting... you might be able to do that . When I started quilting I used the blue painters tape to make lines so my quilting was straight if I wanted that
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Old 10-28-2019, 09:45 AM
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I took the masking/painters tape one step further. I cut a piece about 12 inches long and using a fine Sharpie pen marked the tape every 1/4 inch - the length I wanted the stitches to be. The stitches were going to be very visible so I not only wanted them to be straight but I also wanted them to be even. This worked a treat - just make sure the Sharpie ink is completely dry before you start stitching!
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Old 10-28-2019, 03:43 PM
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I just saw a video where a lady took a sharpie and marked the 1/4" increments directly on her thumb!! I guess you never lose it that way!
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Old 10-28-2019, 04:46 PM
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Thanks everyone for your suggestions. I just bought some tiger tape. Wish I had know about that earlier.

You’ve all given me the confidence to go ahead with regular quilting stitches.
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Old 10-28-2019, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by feline fanatic View Post
I would not recommend using embroidery stitches for quilting unless it is a simple running stitch like Sashiko which essentially is the quilting stitch and used quite a bit in big stitch quilting. I think a stem stitch would overpower your piecing if used as a quilting stitch, especially if you use a heavy perle cotton thread or floss. Also many embroidery stitches are not meant to be viewed from the back and some of them aren't very pretty from the backside. Remember that your stitches show on the back as well as the front. And one last thing to mention, with embroidery stitches you are going through a single layer of fabric or maybe a couple of layers if you are embellishing applique. The embroidery stitches you are very comfortable with may become very uncomfortable when trying to do them through multiple layers of fabric (when you go over seam allowances) and batting. I would think it would quickly become an effort in frustration.

Just use a regular hand quilting thread and go for it. No one will ever notice that your stitches aren't all perfect or the same length, including you, once the piece is completed. What you view as imperfect when you are working on it and viewing it from inches away won't be noticeable once the piece is completed and viewed from a normal distance of a couple of feet. The only way you will get good at hand quilting is to just do it. Don't be afraid to mark your topper so you have lines to follow or use masking tape. You can also use the tiger tape that juliasb mentioned but I never did. I did use 1/4" masking tape a lot to quilt 1/4" away from my seams.
What she said!
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Old 10-29-2019, 02:46 AM
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May I suggest, when you have finished, take lots of pictures, with close up and ruler. You will treasure it in the future, when you see how far you've come!
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Old 10-29-2019, 03:06 AM
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I am mostly a hand quilter. Used the Tiger Tape for my first one or 2 projects. Found it to be a big help. As others have said, when your table runner is complete, the uneven stitches won't even be noticed.

Another suggestion is to have a 'scrap quilt' piece - maybe 12" square - that you could do a few stitches on to get your rhythm going and then switch over to your actual project. Useful sometimes when you have a day or 2 between quilting sessions.
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