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Thread: Stitch in the Ditch Question

  1. #1
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    I am ready to start quilting a "wheel of mystery" or some call it "wandering ways" quilt. The instructions say to stitch in the ditch.
    I have only done stitch in the ditch on a straight line. These "ditches" are in a circle. Can I still use a walking foot if I am going around a curve or do I have to free motion?

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Super Member zyxquilts's Avatar
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    I think you can still use your walking foot - just go at a comfortable speed for you to make the curves without "spinning out" :wink:

  3. #3
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    i haven't had much luck using my walking foot in circles. i guess it depends on the size of the circle. when i tried it i got puckers/pulls on the backing. i might not have been doing it properly, though.

  4. #4
    Super Member mary quite contrary's Avatar
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    Unless you are really really good I'd stick with the walking foot and walk slow. You may have to lift your foot periodically to make the turns. Where are the pictures? :)

  5. #5

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    If you can free-motion, then that's the way to go for sure, but if not, then the walking foot still works. If you have a knee-lift, definitely use it. That will make it a whole lot easier.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mary quite contrary
    Unless you are really really good I'd stick with the walking foot and walk slow. You may have to lift your foot periodically to make the turns. Where are the pictures? :)
    Do you have a "needle down" feature on your sewing machine?

    When you lift the presser foot to turn
    the fabric, make sure the needle is in the fabric.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the tips everyone. I am not really, really good at free motion so I will use the walking foot and go slow. I do have a needle down position so will use that along with the knee lift.

    This could take a while but will post pics when I'm done. Thanks again!! :)

  8. #8
    Izy
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    Quote Originally Posted by raksmum
    Thanks for the tips everyone. I am not really, really good at free motion so I will use the walking foot and go slow. I do have a needle down position so will use that along with the knee lift.

    This could take a while but will post pics when I'm done. Thanks again!! :)
    If you have an open toe foot, and can reduce your foot pressure you can quilt carefully around curves, like I did in these pictures :D

    http://www.quiltingboard.com/posts/list/5759.page

    I would practice first :D

  9. #9

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    Open toe is great to see. My walking foot has one :)

    Ruth

  10. #10
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    Thanks Izy and Ruth. I do have an open toe and find it hard to see with the walking foot sometimes. I will try the open toe and yes, I will do a practice run. I have a few extra blocks so will use those.
    Thanks Izy, for the link to your pictures.

  11. #11
    Izy
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    Hope it helps you, I did most of my applique blocks in this way, as you can swing round the bends, either in the ditch or echo, happy stitching make sure you reduce the foot pressure, or you will cause dragging which will give you puckers :( :lol: :D

  12. #12
    Super Member mpeters1200's Avatar
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    What is a knee lift? My machine does not have a needle down option, but I only had to make that mistake once or twice before I started to look and make sure that sucker is down before I lift anything.

  13. #13
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    Hi,

    Personally I have a problem with stitch in the ditch. As a handquilter I never stitch in the ditch unless I am working on a whole cloth or "cheaters" cloth project. I always stitch at the least 1/4 inch to either side of the piecing seam. I always work under the assumption that the quilting will hold the item together should the seaming fail. When doing machine quilting should I actually stitch in the ditch I use a decorative or zigzag stitch that re enforces the seam by catching fabric on both sides of the seams.
    I have done repair work on quite a few very old quilts where the quilting was all that was holding the pieces on the quilt. A quilt that was handpieced or appliqued needs the extra support unless it is only going to be a piece to take out for show on special occasions.

    Just my two cents.

  14. #14

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    A knee lift is a bar that you can attach to your machine. You use your knee pressed against the bar to lift the foot which saves you having to take your hands away from your project and reaching behind the foot to lift it. Makes it a whole lot easier and quicker to quilt.

    Ruth

  15. #15

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    I don't stitch across the stitches as ditch stitch might imply but rather on the low side of the seam. You need to press the seam to one side to do this. I would not ditch stitch when the seams are pressed open, that only weakens the quilt.

    Ruth

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