Sunday, March 06, 2016

Slow Sunday Stitching - In the Ditch?

Mrs. Bobbins
Are you part of the "stitch in the ditch" club? This is a cute cartoon by Julia Icenogle with a play on words. Can you see that they are all doing some hand quilting? I used to do a lot of quilting "in the ditch" (aka... the seams). It is the easiest way to determine where to quilt. There are no lines to draw, and no patterns to design. You just put your stitches in the seam line.

But I rarely do that anymore. I figure if I'm going to put in all that effort, I want to be able to see my stitches... all of them, and not hide most of them in the seam line.
My hand quilting designs are usually either: 
1) store bought stencil, 2) a cardboard stencil I made, 3)  a free form design drawn on the fabric, or 4) stitching 1/4" beside the seam line
This is what I am quilting this week - my oldest UFO hand quilting project. I am drawing a square in a square block in the space between the stars. You can see my favourite quilting needles in this photo - John James big eye size 10.


And inside the small star blocks I am quilting a smaller square in a square pattern. This is what I see when I'm quilting.... my right hand in that very attractive claw shape, rocking that needle up and down, putting in more stitches (but not hiding them in the ditch!)

What are you stitching today? I will be hand quilting, but remember this is a link up for all kinds of hand stitching, not just quilting. We had an amazing variety of hand crafting shown last week and it's pure delight to visit each of you. We love to see updates on your long term projects and celebrate your progress with you!


15 comments:

Carla A Few Of My Favorite Things said...

We just had this discussion on a facebook group. I hate stitching in the ditch although I do find I need to do a bit of it sometimes. I agree if your going to hand quilt you want to see those lovely stitches!

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

I agree...I'd rather see the stitches :)

SandraC said...

I like the kind of quilting you mention, but I have to admit I do like stitching in the ditch, as well, to get a nice tailored look.

Shasta Matova said...

I don't like stitching in the ditch either. Besides the fact that you can't see it, it points out the places where the corners aren't sharp as they should be or the fabric is not pressed in the correct direction!

teacupsandstitches.com said...

Clever cartoon that I have never seen. Your stitches are lovely and should be visible. It can be tough stitching in a ditch when there are seams.

Karen in Breezy Point said...

You are right to make sure all those painstaking stitches show!

Sarah said...

I have to admit I have never hand quilted any of my patchwork projects. I'm a machine girl! That said I adore hand embroidery so really should give it a go! Your quilting always looks beautiful, so why hide it!

Jeanna said...

I stay in the ditch most of the time :)

What kind of thread do you use for your hand quilting?

tubakk said...

Stitching in the ditch, ha-ha.

Robin said...

Stitching in the ditch is so hard when it comes to the joining seams. I stitch both ways; in the ditch when I don't want to be bothered with marking and with a pattern when something special is needed.

Jennifer said...

Your quilting is amazing.

Stephie said...

I'm working on my oldest ufo this evening too! And it's 1/4" from the seam for me (which is making a right mess of it because when I hand pieced it I didn't actually bother to trim the fabric to 1/4" - you live and learn!!) Have a lovely evening Kathy :)

Janet O. said...

Love the cartoon. : )
I started ditch stitching on my Mom's quilts as a young teen. It is a hard habit to break.

audrey said...

I only stitch in the ditch with machine quilting! Like you, I want to see the stitching!

Theresa said...

I'm not great at hand quilting but I agree. I like to see the stitches.