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Thread: Quilting...can it be overdone?

  1. #1
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    Quilting...can it be overdone?

    Recently, I started wondering if a quilt could be "over quilted". I love the new techniques and abilities that the new machines allow us to produce but I have noticed that sometimes, I can't actually see the pattern in the quilt because of the quilting.

    What do you think?

  2. #2
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    yes, a quilt can certainly be 'over-quilted' if the quilting over powers the quilt-
    quilting should enhance- not take over- and sometimes people seem to just get a bit 'carried away' and they fill a quilt up with so much quilting that it winds up being stiff as a board- and the quilt itself is lost somewhere under all that thread.
    but it is a personal choice too- some people like very dense quilting- others like a large--easy quilting style-
    but no matter what kind of quilting a person likes it should enhance the quilt
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  3. #3
    Senior Member Hinterland's Avatar
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    To each their own. I prefer more quilting, but since I mostly hand quilt it's hard to overdo it - I do like to get finished at some point.

    The quilting should complement the top. Most quilters who enjoy doing "over the top" quilting leave lots of room for quilting designs, so the quilting doesn't overpower the pieced design.

    Janet

  4. #4
    Super Member Pat625's Avatar
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    If I ever over quilted I would be in a lot of trouble....I only hand quilt!

  5. #5
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I appreciate your thoughts, buts its like piecing. Some like to work with larger pieces , some like really tiny pieces. Can piecing be overdone?! Can color be overdone?! Too many colors or too few?! Its all in what the creator intends for the piece ! and did the final work meet their expectations.

  6. #6
    Super Member 0tis's Avatar
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    I think its really a matter of choice - but I think sometimes the quilting goes overboard - it really depends on the pattern and the quilter - I would love to do one of those really cool dense quilts - but I don't have the artistic ability to even attempt it. I think it depends on the reason the quilt was made - like utilitarian quilt, art quilt/wallhanging, or contest quilts - I have seen quilts that are just a large easy stipple and that is all it really needed and its beautiful - but I do admire the ability of the quilters to do the dense quilting and I think it is very impressive and adds alot of "wow" factor - but it isn't really necessary to make the quilt "beautiful" - at least in my own opinion.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Sally J's Avatar
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    I think it's like all things with quilting, to each their own. I don't do lots of fancy quilting just because I do it on my home machine and because I want the quilt really soft. I admire those "fancy" quilted pieces but just don't have the skills, or really the desire to try it.

  8. #8
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    It's YOUR quilt...you quilt it so YOU like it...I don't quilt mine too heavy because I like them to be soft and cuddly.
    If you feel like you're special...it's 'cause you are!
    Momto5

  9. #9
    Senior Member ShabbyTabby's Avatar
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    I personally don't care for dense quilting as it does make the quilt stiff. If it's just for show it's okay but to use to cuddle in, I want it soft and easy to drape. I very much admire the beautiful quilting some of the LA's do and I know I would never be able to accomplish anything close to it. It's to each his own. It's your quilt so make it to suit YOU.
    Families are like old quilts....although they tend to unravel at times...each can be stitched back together with love.

  10. #10
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lori S View Post
    I appreciate your thoughts, buts its like piecing. Some like to work with larger pieces , some like really tiny pieces. Can piecing be overdone?! Can color be overdone?! Too many colors or too few?! Its all in what the creator intends for the piece ! and did the final work meet their expectations.
    Exactly.

    Some pieces look better with less quilting, some demand more. And not everyone will agree on each piece
    May your stitches always be straight, your seams always lie flat, and your grain never be biased against you.

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  11. #11
    Power Poster joyce888's Avatar
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    I have seen some quilts that I couldn't tell what the pattern was because of all the quilting. But since it's a personal preference I don't say anything negative.
    Joyce

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  12. #12
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    For me personally, yes. But I don't like to notice the quilting. I want to see the piecing and if I see the quilting first it is overdone for MY TASTE. But like everyone has said, it is theirs and they can do what they want.

  13. #13
    Super Member burchquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShabbyTabby View Post
    I personally don't care for dense quilting as it does make the quilt stiff. If it's just for show it's okay but to use to cuddle in, I want it soft and easy to drape. I very much admire the beautiful quilting some of the LA's do and I know I would never be able to accomplish anything close to it. It's to each his own. It's your quilt so make it to suit YOU.
    I agree. While dense quilting can look nice, sometimes I think it makes the quilt too stiff.
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  14. #14
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    It depends on the usage. Compare a whole cloth quilt designed to be a "bedspread" with a baby quilt to wrap around a newborn. Apples and oranges. Or a wall hanging where the thread painting is the quilting - to a charity quilt for the homeless - still apples and oranges. I don't think you can compare quilts other than to say they appeal to you or they don't.
    Last edited by TanyaL; 04-19-2012 at 03:54 PM.

  15. #15
    Power Poster RedGarnet222's Avatar
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    I read a machine quilting book once that catagorized quilts. There are the ones that you quilt lightly for "dragger" quilts that are drug around everywhere. Then there is a moderately quilted quilt for gifts and special type quilts. And then there is the quilts meant for shows that are quilted to the "OMG!!" state.

    I love the quilting I have seen here that has taken quilting to an art and I ever so wish I could do that. LOL!
    RedGarnet222

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  16. #16
    Super Member Sandee's Avatar
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    I agree with it that it's a choice. If you want it softer, less quilting. But I LOVE all the quilting patterns I've seen on the QB, & I can totally understand wanting to do alot of it on every quilt, too. Variety is wonderful!

  17. #17
    Power Poster Sadiemae's Avatar
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    I am sure there are lots of people who think my quilts are overquilted. I don't really worry about it, because I want to practice and cannot afford to make more items just to practice on.
    Sadiemae

  18. #18
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
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    I have a book that shows the same quilt with different designs of quilting..... It is amazing that the quilting makes such a difference. Some quilters have a gift of knowing exactly the amount and design to use for a given quilt. That book has opened my eyes.... I really think hard about how I'm going to quilt my projects now...... the quilting can make an average quilt a stunning one.

  19. #19
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    My personal preference is for minimal quilting because I want it soft and snuggly. Also I am not yet to a skill level to do fancy stuff. Once I reach that skill level, I'm sure I will want to showcase that skill. In which case I will likely still want soft and snuggly for any quilt intended for regular use. Wall hangings, tablerunners and the like will probably be another story.
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  20. #20
    Senior Member lfletcher's Avatar
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    I believe quilting can be overdone. I have seen quilts at shows that are as stiff as cardboard. The skill of the quilter, however, was exceptional and I was amazed at the quilting, but the piecing was lost. It is a matter of preference and how you are going to use the quilt matters too.

  21. #21
    Super Member hperttula123's Avatar
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    I prefer heavier quilting. There is something about the texture of it after it is washed. I could run my hands on it all day long. Some of my smaller projects, I purposely quilt really heavy just so I get that. If the thread matches the quilt, it doesn't take away from the quilt itself. That's just my opinion.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member IAmCatOwned's Avatar
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    Oh, yes, it can be overquilted. If you overquilt, you lose the loft and thus the warmth of the quilt. Not an issue if you want say, a coverlet or a wallhanging. Lots and lots of quilting looks fabulous, but unless you want a summer quilt, you have to do less.

    I have seen some very heavily quilted quilts at quilt shows and I can't say that I've ever seen one so quilted that you can't see the pattern of the quilt. Maybe it was the quilter's thread choice rather than the quilting?

  23. #23
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    Many,many of the long arm quilting I see on the Board I'd call way overdone.
    It looks like quilting for the sake of quilting - having no relationship to the quilt pattern itself.

    I've yet to see a handquilted one that I'd call overdone.
    Last edited by gollytwo; 04-20-2012 at 07:35 AM. Reason: amplification

  24. #24
    Super Member justflyingin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sally J View Post
    I think it's like all things with quilting, to each their own. I don't do lots of fancy quilting just because I do it on my home machine and because I want the quilt really soft. I admire those "fancy" quilted pieces but just don't have the skills, or really the desire to try it.
    I'm with you here.

  25. #25
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    I like soft quilting so you can see the design in the piecing. Sometime they are way over quilted. But it is truly what you like.
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