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Topic: Do I really have to sew in the ends of my threads when machine quilting?  (Read 3092 times)
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« on: December 21, 2010 01:07:23 PM »

Hi there,
New to machine quilting. Very lazy. Have been hand quilting because it is easier (but slower!)
Question 1
Can I do a bit of a forwards, reverse type stitch and cut the threads off close to the quilt? (like when sewing garments?)
My mum says I need to get both threads on the back side, tie a knot and then use a needle to run them in to the batting.
This sounds like a crazy lot of work, especially if I do a motif in the centre of blocks and need to cut threads and start again in the next square across.

Question 2
If i start quilting at the edge of the quilt, in the extra batting/backing at the sides, and quilt across to the other side, what happens when the extra batting and backing get cut off before attaching the binding?
Will the quilting unravel?

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« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2010 12:38:06 PM »

My quilts will start to get a little lose after I cut the edges, but once I sew on the binding, you never notice and the binding seam holds all the threads in. I sometimes just go back over my stitch and if it's right on, you barely notice. I think it depends on how much of a perfectionist you are. I have never tied my threads in a knot and agree with you that that sounds like a lot of extra work. I also think if you are using that clear quilting thread, it wont knot very well either.

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« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2010 06:26:55 PM »

most machine quilters lock their stitches by taking a couple of stitches in place and then taking a couple of very teeny tiny stitches before moving on to the rest of the quilting.

Once the binding is sewn into place the threads should be secure.

« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2010 02:45:42 PM »

One benefit of weaving them in is that they won't get tangled when you do more quilting. 

The class I took showed us how to pull the lower thread up using the top thread, then knot it, then use a needle to weave it under the fabric.  Realistically, I just did this on my swatch quilt from the class.  All the projects I've quilted at home, I do the lock stitch (my machine has a button to do this) or sew backwards trick.

I probably won't win any quilting awards, but at least I finish my projects in a decent amount of time.   Tongue

I've got a handful of vintage patterns up for trade/swap (1950s/60s): Monograms, embellished bags, men's robe, lace work, spats/bags, bell bottom, mod dress.  PM if interested.
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2010 07:21:02 PM »

Try some quilter's self-threading needles that have a slit in the eye so you can just pop the thread in instead of trying to thread through the eye.  It makes it so easy to hide those loose ends and looks much better without little threads sticking out from your quilt. 

I still do some tiny stitches to tie it off, pull the back thread through to the front and then use the self-threading needle to hide the ends.  If I had to tie a knot and then try to thread a regular needle, nothing would ever get finished!

« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2010 01:12:06 PM »

Thanks everyone!
I have tried to minimise the loose ends by only ever stopping the line when I run out of bobbin thread. (unavoidable!) So I have used three bobbins so far, making 6 times I need to run the thread in. A few times when I had a dinner break, I left the quilt in the machine with the needle down and kind of bundled the whole thing up so I could move it off the kitchen bench where I was quilting it, just to avoid cutting that thread!

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