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Thread: To reverse stitch or not

  1. #1
    Senior Member klarina's Avatar
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    To reverse stitch or not

    Hello

    I was wondering what expert quilters recomend regarding if there is a need to reverse stitch a couple stitches at the beginning and end when you are piecing your blocks or not?

    Pros and cons?
    Baby Lock Ellisimo-^-Baby Lock Ellageo-^-Brother PQ1500s-^-1947 Featherweight.
    Janome 19660-^-Baby Lock Serger-^-Singer Serger-^-Accuquilt Go & Brother ScannCut.

  2. #2
    Super Member snipforfun's Avatar
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    No need to backstitch. Those ends will be included when you sew them to the piece. However if I am using a poly thread (all the time!) I sew off the ends about 1/2" as poly tends to unravel. Another reason to not backstitch is that it makes it harder to rip out if necessary (often!)

  3. #3
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    I have not done it when putting blocks together. Never had a problem, but I do sometimes when I have to piece borders or bindings. I feel like it makes just a bit stronger, in my mind anyway.
    Life is not a movie. No one is going to yell "CUT" when you make a mistake. - Anne L. Fulton

    I am from the South....39 miles south of Boston.

  4. #4
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    ​I don't back stitch on blocks but I do back stitch on the outer edge of my rows to prevent the edges from unravelling.

  5. #5
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    No need if you lower your stitch length. All it does is waste time and create bulk in the seams.

  6. #6
    Member Esmerelde's Avatar
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    Not when piecing. I do when quilting, attaching bindings etc.

  7. #7
    Super Member Christine-'s Avatar
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    It depends on the seam I'm sewing. Sometimes I feel it needs a bit of anchoring, like at the end of a row of blocks
    Bernina 640, Singer 201-3, Singer Centennial 15-91, Tin Lizzie 26" long arm

  8. #8
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    not needed because when the blocks are joined and then the borders are added all beginning/ending seams will be stitched over securing them
    Judy

  9. #9
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I backstitch two stitches at the start and finish. To resew a seam that has pulled open after you start a row is a hassle. Two stitches won't add enough bulk to notice. I tried using the shorter stitch length but it was better just to backstitch for me.
    Got fabric?

  10. #10
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    As a newbie, I've got several of my current project's 9-patch squares that aren't entirely square. And if I square them, they'll be too small. So I've left them unsquare, and on the parts that aren't long enough to reach a full 1/4" seam (by this I mean REALLY close so that the stitch line is almost on the edge of the fabric), I find that backstitching that portion and then running forward again creates a nice sturdy stitch that is not likely to create a hole in that spot down the road. I know it's creating bulk in the seam, but I'd rather have bulk than a hole later on.

    Otherwise, I'm not locking in my stitches at the beginning & end.
    Last edited by Teeler; 04-04-2013 at 05:42 AM.

  11. #11
    Super Member ontheriver's Avatar
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    The only place I reverse stitch is on the borders or whatever pieces will be on the outside edge of the quilt. That way if it is pulled while I am quilting or putting on the frame I do not have any areas that come undone. The rest is held together when the blocks are put together.
    Jeanann

    Theres nothing wrong with me a little chocolate won't fix.

  12. #12
    Super Member Luv Quilts and Cats's Avatar
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    I lock both at the beginning and end. Yes, it is a pain if I have to rip out a seam. But I like the sturdiness of locking the seam.
    Luv Quilts and Cats
    Never underestimate the healing effects of beauty. - Florence Nightingale

  13. #13
    Power Poster mighty's Avatar
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    I do most of the time only because I can not seem to break the habbit! I do not think it is necessary but did it for so may years I seem to be on auto!! LOL

  14. #14
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    I only backstitch when putting the top together and getting ready for quilting.

  15. #15
    Senior Member klarina's Avatar
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    Thank you for all such great tips.

    I have a clearer idea now on when to and when not to backstitch.

    Right now I'm doing 5" I Spy quilt combining prints with white 5" charms. It will be a full size quilt. I got two sets of 50 5" charms ea. at the quilt shop. For the rest of the charms, I'm using my own stash to hunt for fabrics with I Spy prints. This is really fun.
    Baby Lock Ellisimo-^-Baby Lock Ellageo-^-Brother PQ1500s-^-1947 Featherweight.
    Janome 19660-^-Baby Lock Serger-^-Singer Serger-^-Accuquilt Go & Brother ScannCut.

  16. #16
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
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    No I do not reverse stitch and have never had any problems
    Brother XL-3500i, SQ-9050, Dreamweaver XE6200D, Juki MO-2000QVP

  17. #17
    Senior Member Cagey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Esmerelde View Post
    Not when piecing. I do when quilting, attaching bindings etc.
    Same here - got lazy on one quilt and didn't do this. Paid the price.

  18. #18
    Super Member Buckeye Rose's Avatar
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    Total waste of time for me. I use a smaller stitch than default and chain stitch my blocks. When the quilt top is all together I staystitch the outside edge to reduce any chance of stretching or seams pulling loose.

  19. #19
    Super Member decky's Avatar
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    I was told to set my stitch length at 2 by a well known quilter, so doing this you do not need to back stitch at either the beginning or the ending.

    Pat in MN

  20. #20
    Super Member Janice McC's Avatar
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    I don't backstitch during piecing but I just put a binding on today and took a couple of bs's at the beginning, end, and corners of the binding. I don't find the blocks come apart so I'm ok with the way I do it.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Jennie and Me's Avatar
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    I so backstitch a lot of the time.(hard to teach an old dog new tricks!) I wore out one BS button on my Viking. When I took it in for a repair they looked at me like I'd grown another head because I backstitch. I just like the added security of knowing that the stitches are locked. Whatever floats your boat, I say!

  22. #22
    CRO
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    Senior Member CRO's Avatar
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    If your machine has the fix button wouldn't this work just as well?

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