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Thread: quilting and decorative stitches

  1. #1
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    How many of you use the decorative stitches available on so many machines in your quilting? I've pretty much decided to go with a Juki straight stitch machine, as I want to be able to piece, stitch in the ditch, and free motion quilt. So, from those of you who actually use those stitches, what, how, and when do you use them in your quilts? Also, can you do those decorative stitches with a walking foot? I just want to know what I might be missing if I go with a straight stitch machine. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Senior Member redrummy's Avatar
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    I have just started experimenting with machine embroidery, so I am testing out the fancy stiches. I like the one that looks like a vine with leaves on it, and have tried a few others.

  3. #3
    k3n
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    I quilted zig zag either side of the ditch with my walking foot on a lappy and on a runner - figured since I struggle to stay in the ditch this would be a good option! Looked pretty good but of course took longer and more thread. Will try to find a pic...

    table runner
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  4. #4
    k3n
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    sorry - doesn't show up very well! and my Mum's got it now so can't take another pic...

  5. #5
    Super Member belmer's Avatar
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    I use my decorative stitches alot on my quilts especially around the borders to give that extra character to your quilts.
    They also look terrific on Crazy quilts. and Yes you do use a walking foot.( at least I do.)

  6. #6
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    I started taking a class to learn to use the decorative stitches on my embroidery machine. We are making a quilt with applique on each block and different stitches on each one. I love it. I also use them for decorating towels for different holidays.

  7. #7
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    I use the decorative stitches on my regular sewing machine for the quilting a lot on baby quilts :D:D:D
    The Serpentine stitch along the seams works well, as you do not have to stay in the ditch, and it does not show if you are a little off when quilting in grids either.
    Any of the decorative stitches will work, as long as they are a more open design, and you can elongate them. I usually widen them a little too...as wide as I can and still use my walking foot :D:D:D Elongating and widening them, seems to help them stitch more smoothly as there are more layers than in regular sewing :wink:

  8. #8

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    Decorative stitches are seldom used in piecing a quilt. Even when machine quilting a straight stitch is used. I never could understand why they put so many decorative stitches on a quilters machine. Makng a crazy quilt is about the only time I think they would be used.

  9. #9
    Super Member carrieg's Avatar
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    In the doll quilt I'm making, I used a decorative stitch in the sashing. I use some of them, but I don't do FMQ yet either. Some of the quilts for Project Linus get a decorative when I sew the binding on.

  10. #10
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    I have used decorative stitching on small projects using a walking foot.
    Husvarna Viking recently came out with a new and improved dual feed walking foot that will allow the user to use the decorative stitches that go backwards and forward. Opens many new opportunities for embellishing quilts.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Somebunny's Avatar
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    I love my decorative stitches available on my machine. I dress up clothes, especially for kids, all the time! I love to use them on my quilts. It adds that special "WOW" affect. Once I take a scrap and experience how it stitches out, I'm off and away! Use those stitches! A person can get very creative with the simplest stitches also. Try combining them also.

  12. #12
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    I love to use the decorative stitches on my Bernina when machine quilting my Linus quilts. It gives a little extra flare and like someone else mentioned in makes quilting in the ditch much more accurate. I also believe it helps hold the piecing together. I like to use varigated quilting thread as it also looks more decorative. I use a walking foot if I am quilting. The decorative stitches really dress up any sewing project. We have those small memory foam pillows on our bed. I made pillowcases for them as the queen size ones that came with my sheets are way to big. I used a decorative stitch about 4 inches in from the opening just to make the pillowcases look a little special.
    For anyone who wants to participate in the " one million pillowcase project" you could decorate a store bought pillow case with embroidery, decorative stitches or some appliqued motifs etc. I do something like that for my grandchildren and great nieces and nephews for special occasions.

  13. #13
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    I use some of my decorative stitches - the more open/less dense ones to sew on my binding as I don't do hand work anymore.

    I use the dec stitches [again, the less dense stitching ones] a LOT in bobbin work: where you put prettier and thicker threads in the bobbin for a great look. You just sew 'upside down' in that the bottom is up when you do this technique. Looks really WOW with something like a Razzle Dazzle thread.

  14. #14
    Senior Member carol45's Avatar
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    I stitched about samples of all the decorative stitches on my machine onto 8.5x11" sheets of fabric and I marked next to them which stitches they are. You can fit a lot of these onto a single sheet. Now when I want to use them for a project I just look in these reference sheets until I find something suitable. Of course, the size of the stitching can still be varied, but it is useful to have it available like this, rather than to just try to figure out what it will look like when it's sewn.

  15. #15
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    This is a great idea Carol. The tiny picture of the decorative stitches usually don't do them justice and they look so much better stitched out.

    I'm going to do this..thank you. :roll: :roll: :roll:

  16. #16
    Super Member knlsmith's Avatar
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    I have 5 machines, the 2 I use the most are my Janome 8077 from Hancocks, it has pretty stitches, and my Janome 1600 P-QC, from dealer, it is a fast traight stitch machine. I use the 1600 for piecing and FMQ. And I use the 8077 for decorative stitching and piecing.

  17. #17
    Junior Member Elizabeth-Liz's Avatar
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    I use the decorative stitching on my machine to quilt the few quilts that I have quilted so far.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by k3n
    I quilted zig zag either side of the ditch with my walking foot on a lappy and on a runner - figured since I struggle to stay in the ditch this would be a good option! Looked pretty good but of course took longer and more thread. Will try to find a pic...
    very pretty. thank you for sharing.

  19. #19

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    I use my decorative stitches a lot. They are especially useful for applique. In addition to the decorative stitches, there are some utility stitches that are included with the pretty ones. One of my stitches is two stitches forward and one back, which does well for embroidering lines on applique pieces. The longer I have my machine, the more I use the decorative stitches. You could probably get by without them, but I'm glad I have them. More than I thought I would be.

  20. #20
    Super Member blahel's Avatar
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    if the Juki has a bigger throat space I would definitely get that. I have a machine with lots of stitches and so far mostly use the straight stitch. You could always get another embroidery machine if you decide you want to do decorative stitches..If I had my choice over again i would get a workhorse one that will sew over anything and would be quite happy if it only sewed straight stitches.

  21. #21
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    I surely would NEVER want to give up my variable zig-zag stitch on my machine. Sometimes using a very narrow zig-zag stitch is great for applique - it gives it a more primitive look.

    The triple stitch is great for that hand embroidered look without all the work. I love it since I don't do hand work anymore due to arthritis and such.

  22. #22
    Super Member Deecee's Avatar
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    I use the decorative stitches on my machine when doing applique (blanket stitch, zig-zag, satin etc.) and the fancier flower, leaf, star, bells etc. stitches when decorating wedding memories, wall hangings and have used the clasp stitch (*) instead of straight quilting in areas.

    I find I am using these stitches more often than I used to.

  23. #23
    Super Member Oklahoma Suzie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by k3n
    sorry - doesn't show up very well! and my Mum's got it now so can't take another pic...
    It's beautiful.

  24. #24
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I use a straight stitch Juki TL98QE and have no need or desire to use decorative stitches on my quilts. It has a larger throat and I can quilt a queen/king. It works for me.

  25. #25

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    If I bought another one today, the Juki is exactly what I would buy. But I do quilting - and it has everything I need. I wasted money buying a top of line machine, and never ever use all that it came with, including the very expensive software that I purchased to go with it :(

    Wish I would've saved my money now...but I didn't realize it when I bought it. I sure would today! You're being very wise.

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