Machine Quilting Or Hand Quilting: Which Is Better?

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June 14, 2018 By Jenny Dawson

Machine Quilting Or Hand Quilting: Which Is Better?

Quilting is more popular than ever before in America; there are around 21 million quilters in the US, and it is currently a $3.7 billion industry. If you want to try quilting but you’re not sure if you should hand sew or use a machine, there are a few things for you to consider. Both methods are fairly different, so it is important to choose the method that works best for you – especially if you want to make lots of beautiful quilts for your loved ones!

Should You Hand Sew?

Hand quilting is the traditional way of making quilts; every single quilt that you ever see in a museum is hand quilted. While this method isn’t as popular now as it once was, there are still lots of people who enjoy hand quilting. However, quilting with a sewing machine is a newer method, and this can make it easier to produce complex, beautiful designs that are hard to complete by hand. Machine sewing is also much faster, so many people prefer to use a sewing machine.

When to Use A Sewing Machine

Most quilters use a combination of hand sewing and a sewing machine to create perfect quilts. After all, technology has made life much easier, and a sewing machine can really speed up the process of quilting! If you have never sewn before you should get a sewing machine for beginners, as this will make it easier for you to get to grips with the machine – but you won’t need to use it all the time. 

If you are trying to work out if you should use a sewing machine or not, there are a few things you can consider to help you decide. For instance the size of the quilt; if it is bigger than 50” x 50” it will take a long time to hand quilt, so a sewing machine could be a good option. You should also look at the fabrics you are using; some fabrics like cotton are easy to hand sew, but other fabrics like silks and batiks can be much harder.

Using a Combination Of Hand Sewing and Machine Sewing

If you want you can combine hand sewing and machine sewing so that you get the best of both worlds. A machine is a much faster way to make a quilt, but if you want to add small details (such as beads, sequins or an applique), many sewers say that they find that hand sewing delivers a more precise and accurate result. So if you are trying out a complicated design with lots of small details, you may want to use a combination of both methods. 

It is important to find a quilting style that works for you. After all, you should enjoy your hobby, whether you decide to use a sewing machine or hand sew quilts for the people in your life!


12 Fun Facts About Quilting, Chicago Now

Quilting the Old-Fashioned Way, Washington Post

Technological Advancements have Made Life Easier Than What It Was In The Past, The Essay Blog

Best Sewing Machine For Beginners, Stitch And Sew

Red Renaissance Caps, Briwaf

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Written by

Jenny Dawson