Longest quilting distance

anitastitchFebruary 5, 2013

I know that most battings have a suggested quilting distance, like 3 1/2" or so, but do any of you ever push the limit there? Either in machine or hand quilting?
For beginner quilters, quilting rather large quilts, would it be pushing the limit to have 7" squares left un-quilted and quilt in the sashing only?

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Why kind (brand) and type (cotton or poly) of batting are you using? With some kinds of batting, 7" wouldn't be a problem. Others might have trouble holding up.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 1:45PM
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As Jennifer says, it will depend on the brand and type of batting you are using. All manufacturers will give you a maximum recommended distance at which their batting will work best. If you have the brand name you can get an idea by a simple internet search or call to the shop where you got it to have a clerk check. If you allow too much distance between quilting, you might be 1) unsatisfied with the general appearance or 2) worse than that, the batting can shift causing a lumpy quilt as the batting seperates and tears. If you don't feel comfortable straying much from the sashing seams, there is a rather easy solution I've used more than once and found to work fine, both for performance and appearance. After you've stitched around the sashing, get some heavier thread like perl thread, or cotton yarn, or even doubled quilting thread and do one small, simple hand knot in the direct centre of each seven inch square. That takes very little skill, goes very quickly and can even make the quilt look cuter and more 'hand finished'. There is no quilting "law" who says you can't mix finishing techniques. Far from it.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 3:06PM
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If you're going to put a lot of effort into making a nice quilt, I think you'll be happier quilting those 7" squares. I guess you could always do the quilt without quilting them and see what you think. You don't have to do anything elaborate...even an X in the square or a smaller centred square. Tying the centres, as Calliope suggested would also be a good option.
Or if you're concerned about the time it will take, why not set it up in a q-snap or set of frames and invite some of your quilting friends in for a quilting bee?
My first quilt was a double and I put a lot of handquilting in it. It took me a very very long time but I'm so glad I did it.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 3:46PM
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With polyester batting, I make flannel blankets w/ 6" squares that are tied and they hold up well through the wash. I don't think it would work so well w/ cotton batting.

I've also used polyester batting on blankets made from panels - where the panel is wall-hanging size with border fabric added. The print was just too pretty to quilt all over, so I did a bare minimum to hold the layers together and it has laundered well over the years w/o the batting shifting/scrunching/clumping. In the pic, I just stitched in the gold borders and I did not stitch at all in the borders which were around 18" wide.

Here is a link that might be useful: bird panel

    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 9:43AM
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