Signature quilt

Back in August of 2014 I started a signature quilt. (see that post here

and here is another old post about signature blocks from 2011

Here is the top that I finished in Sept of 2014


I decided that it needed to be finished so I added borders and then (I don’t know why) decided to try to machine quilt it, which for a hand quilter is unusual.  There is a school of thought that says “better done than perfect” but that was really not the reasoning here.  I did want to finish it but I also wanted to give my treadle machine a try.    I found a copy of the original manual for the machine and there was a short section about machine quilting and since reading it I have wondered how that would go.

here is the machine

DSCN8664DSCN8666Well I learned that it can be done….but I also learned that with this machine and the feet that I have, it really in not the best choice.     The Free machines have feet that attach to the machine differently than Singers.  That being the case I have not been able to locate a walking foot that will fit the machine.    Here is how the feet attach for this machine. (the machines listed all had this style but have all changed for the newer models)


I have been unable to locate a walking foot or a darning/free motion foot that attaches this way. I am still looking ….there are many available for the side clamping machines .


So lacking a walking foot or a quilting foot and not being able to lower the feed dogs (they can be covered or removed) makes for a challenging quilting experience.   It was hard!   really hard!!    I used the foot the manual for the machine said to use but the result was much less than perfect.   There is no reason that a treadle machine wouldn’t be a good machine to do machine quilting as long as you can find the right feet to do the job correctly.   I will try it again when I find the right foot or figure how to modify one to fit the machine.

I think I’ll mainly stick to hand quilting but it was good to try ….. next time I might try the Singer 301…..I have the correct feet for that and it might be fun.

Here is the quilt


Teddy says HI


Happy  Quilting




25 thoughts on “Signature quilt

  1. Lane says:

    Hey Tim. That is called a greist attachment. The feet are known as greist feet. There is no walking or darning foot that I’ve ever found. And I’ve been searching for years. But if you do a search for free motion quilting on a Eldredge two spool machine, you’ll find a video by a lady that made a darning foot out of a paperclip. I use one and it works great! My best. Long time reader. First time commenter.

    • timquilts says:

      Yes and I have a box full of greist feet….but I l might have to try the paperclip idea ….Or modify one of the greist feet in some way……Ill never use the many I have …..who needs 6 different sizes of edge hemmers LOL

  2. Peg Cooper says:

    Tim, you are truly amazing and ever so patient!

    Hi Teddy, cute boy.

  3. lorieast2 says:

    Nice top, Tim! I can feel your frustration at trying to quilt it without the proper tools. I imagine that, if anyone can do it, it’s you, even if you end up having to Macgyver a solution! (And yes, I’d admit to being surprised that you wanted to machine quilt it EXCEPT for that new machine.)

    (Hi Teddy! *ear scratch* *belly rub* *head pat*)

  4. Michelle in Houston says:

    Treadle has info on changing a back clamp presser bar to a side clamp. It involves purchasing a new presser bar and replacing the back clamp bar with a the new presser bar. Bottom line buy the side screw bar and put that one in instead.

  5. Sandra Henderson says:

    You are the most tenacious, hard working / quilting man I know. Keep in keepin on! Go Tim, go!

    On that note, I have to tell you a story…
    I went to a cemetRy when I last went home to Louisiana to flowers out for family and I noticed a shiny, new headstone… Of course, it’s the country and not many can be buried there, so I went over…
    I first noticed a suitcase engraved in the front. Upon closer inspection, she was a centurian. It said, u DWR the suitcase, ” GO GRANNY! GO!”.
    I wish I’d known this woman.

    You are that kind of man. So young.
    Keep on doing what you do. Just be careful and not get tangled up in the web…
    I love that you are so down to earth and not about money.

  6. Sandra Henderson says:

    Take out the part (u DWR the suitcase) , typo, sorry

  7. Hey Teddy! Tell Tim I said ‘Hey’….

  8. Sara says:

    Send a message to the treadle on yahoo site and you will get answers from everyone! Amazing and knowledgeable folks!

  9. Nancy says:

    In the meantime, til you can modify the treadle I would go with the 301. Wonderful machine. I have two and the slant needle walking foot. Good luck. I love your treadle cabinet.

  10. Lorij says:

    Hi Tim and Teddy. I like that machine very much. Cabinet too. Give Teddy a snuggle for me.😊

  11. Rose in Vt says:

    Tim: That quilt is very striking. You’ve been quilting long enough to know that as the years pass and the pain you felt machine quilting it lessens, that you’ll still have a wonderful quilt to show for it! To top it off, you learned a bit more about your machine. It’s all good.

  12. Amie says:

    No lie,I have 28 treadles and I use them all. The Free is one of the smoothest machines bc of how the gears and bearings are. The are some great treadle groups on FB. If you use the zipper foot on the Free,its feeds very evenly like a walking foot. That said,if you canfind a Singer Industrial 31-15 treadle it has a 12″ throat and takes Juki high shank feet. I have 2 of those!


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