Secure and Hide Thread Ends In Machine Quilting

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Choose Which of Three Methods Works Best for You!

Machine quilting is a popular solution for today’s busy quilters. A quilt can be quilted in a fraction of the time that hand quilting requires. But, what do you do with the thread ends where you stop or start in the center of a quilt?

Hand quilters are taught to tie off thread ends and bury them in the batting to hide them and prevent them from pulling stitches loose. Machine quilters are faced with a different situation.

Not only are there two threads instead of one at the beginning and end of every line of stitching, you’re faced with the issue of what to do with them. Many quilters will start and end a line of quilting with backstitching or very small stitches to secure it, then cut the dangling ends as close to the quilt as possible.

This approach can leave a quilt looking less than finished. Cut thread ends often look like little eyelashes sticking up from the surface of the quilt. And, either approach for securing the ends of lines of stitching can come loose over time.

The solution is to bury the threads, just as you would with hand quilting.

How to Sink Thread Ends from Machine Quilting

Kathleen Loomis of Art with a Needle provides excellent instructions for two methods of burying thread ends from machine quilting.

One method uses a needle threader to quickly get thread ends on a needle to pull through into the batting.

How to Sink Thread Ends from Machine Quilting

The second uses a separate needle and thread to capture and pull thread ends through to the center.

Leah Day provides a third option. Tie the thread ends into a little knot and pull the knot into the batting. She uses a cheater needle but you can use a needle threader if you wish. See Leah’s method in the video below.

All three methods serve to secure the ends and hide the thread tails for a polished finished look. Look through all three to find the right method for you.

Click here to read the “Sinking Thread Ends” article.




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