Is it possible to quilt (straight line quilting) without a walking foot? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 09-24-2010, 03:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess the title says it all.

Is it possible to quilt (straight line quilting) without a walking foot?

If not, is there any other kind of quilting that can be done without a walking foot. My hand stitching is abysmal.

Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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#2 of 12 Old 09-25-2010, 01:05 PM
 
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The short answer is... it depends.

I have done some quilting without my walking foot. But it was with quite thin batting and 100% cotton material. You will probably have to go slower than you could with a walking foot and baste your layers together really well. That being said... there have been times when I couldn't quilt without my walking foot... I tried but it made things all bunchy. I prefer not to use it as I find it kinda annoying but I do use it if I have to. My advice would be to try it on a small sample of the backing, batting and material that you want to quilt. Good Luck

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#3 of 12 Old 09-25-2010, 05:16 PM
 
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sure you can. the walking foot will usually make it go more smoothly and the quilting may be neater, but I almost never use the walking foot when I quilt.
Maybe I should, though because my quilting is usually kinda messy.

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#4 of 12 Old 09-28-2010, 02:37 PM
 
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Sure.

Although, the larger the quilt, the more difficult it can be. I find that the bigger the surface I'm quilting, the more likely I'll get wrinkles and folded-over bits.

But for the thin, baby-sized quilts I do, my machine's standard foot works just fine.
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#5 of 12 Old 09-28-2010, 02:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thank god! tbh, I didn't realize when I was picking out fabric how expensive this project was going to be. between cutting mat, rotary cutter, new needles fabric and thread--wow! These are going to be some expensive blankets!

Knitting (my main 'hobby') seemed much more affordable. I'd really rather not buy a walking foot if I can help it-- they are like 30 bucks! I did pick up batting on sale-- yea!

I can def. see how quilting (at least piecing tops) can be additive. Honestly have fiddling with 'must sew' clothing items for so long, I'm shocked at how enjoyable and satisfying the piecing is.

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#6 of 12 Old 09-30-2010, 04:56 PM
 
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It's definitely addictive. For me, it's not so much the process I enjoy ( but getting a finished quilt out of it. I get so focused on finishing that I'll stay up 2-3 hours past when I'd planned to go to bed.

The problem for me is, I make them to sell, and every single one I make, I want to keep.
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#7 of 12 Old 09-30-2010, 07:19 PM
 
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Well, if you sew already, and have scraps, scrap quilts are much cheaper than the kind you buy everything for! I do a lot of scrap quilts, so it doesn't feel like such an expensive hobby for me (though I'm sure if I added the numbers up, it would be an eye opener).

I have quilted both with and without a walking foot. I don't know if I'd do a twin size or larger with no walking foot, but for a baby/throw size it's doable. Practice on something smaller though. And I find that cotton batting shifts less, too.

What machine do you have? I have a Kenmore, and got a set from the Sears website with walking foot, free motion quilting foot, and a little open-toe "craft foot" for about $25 (plus shipping). If you plan to keep quilting, think of it not as a cost for this project, but a sort of "capital investment", and it won't seem so bad.
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#8 of 12 Old 09-30-2010, 07:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by butterflyblue View Post
Well, if you sew already, and have scraps, scrap quilts are much cheaper than the kind you buy everything for! I do a lot of scrap quilts, so it doesn't feel like such an expensive hobby for me (though I'm sure if I added the numbers up, it would be an eye opener).

I have quilted both with and without a walking foot. I don't know if I'd do a twin size or larger with no walking foot, but for a baby/throw size it's doable. Practice on something smaller though. And I find that cotton batting shifts less, too.

What machine do you have? I have a Kenmore, and got a set from the Sears website with walking foot, free motion quilting foot, and a little open-toe "craft foot" for about $25 (plus shipping). If you plan to keep quilting, think of it not as a cost for this project, but a sort of "capital investment", and it won't seem so bad.
I think if I look, I'd be able to find a much more reasonably priced on online. However-- if I can at all avoid it, I'd like to not spend anything more.

I as for scraps-- are your scraps mostly quilting cotton (I can see how they would add up quickly!), or are they from clothing etc. I was considering making a rule that my backing must come from my clothing stash, which is mostly knits, but I'm not sure if that would quilt well. I was lucky enough to by a queen sized package of warm and natural for 10 dollars, so I can get both my baby quilts out of that.

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#9 of 12 Old 09-30-2010, 07:49 PM
 
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Well, I make a lot of my and my children's clothes out of cotton or cotton blends, so a lot of my clothing scraps are quilting cottons. I've never tried to use knits in a quilt, not sure they're stable enough. For a backing though, it might work, because the woven front would stabilize it.

Hardcore quilters will say never use poly blends, but I do quite often, it doesn't make that much difference, and in fact I've used rayons and even 100% polyester wovens. But the 100% poly has raveled a bit with washing, so I'm not sure that was a good idea. But it was also my first quilt and so it is possible the seam allowances were on the scanty side.

I've also used flannels in quilts, and have a bag of flannel scraps I intend to make a child's quilt out of.

Oh yeah, some people do use knits in quilts, for tee-shirt quilts, but I've never done one of those, and you have to do some things differently, I think.

Edited to add: If you want to make backing from stash, you can also piece smaller pieces together for the backing. I've done that several times, and the effect can be really nice.
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#10 of 12 Old 09-30-2010, 10:33 PM
 
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I have quilted every single one of my quilts (over a dozen) without a walking foot. I have taken a lot of quilting classes. Start out with your batting and backing larger than necessary, then cut it down (square up) after you are done quilting the layers. You'll lose a bit of both layers (middle and back) without a walking foot. It doesn't show with patterned fabric on both sides. On smaller quilts, it doesn't show at all.

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#11 of 12 Old 10-01-2010, 01:37 PM
 
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For knits you may need a different type of needle. My machine won't do knits, period.
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#12 of 12 Old 10-01-2010, 02:31 PM
 
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You do need a special needle for knits. I forget the exact name, perhaps "ballpoint". Serger needles tend to work well. My machine has specific settings for knits/stretch fabrics, but I usually use the serger for knits whenever possible. I have used the regular settings on my sewing machine for knits, too. The needle is key. Also, knowing what you are using the item for and how to achieve the proper stitch for the purpose. Thread matters, too.

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