Straight Line Quilting

Pin Basting : Fresh Lemons Quilts

A quick post today to show that I have not been lazing around, but am truly working on finishing up my next quilt. I always procrastinate when it’s time to baste because I really just do not enjoy it. With small items like pillows, I spray baste. But when it comes to quilts, I just don’t get the same finish quality as when I pin baste. But I do know others that have great success with spray basting, so I always say you should do what works best for you.

Straight Line Quilting : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I had always planned on doing straight line quilting on this one. When I received the Bernina 750, I knew it didn’t come with a walking foot. I asked during my training if I could use the walking foot from my 440 with it and found out yes, I could. But I might not want to because the 750 has a dual feed system that can be used for straight line quilting.

I will go ahead and tell you that in my head I thought “SURE. Right. There is NO.WAY. the dual feed can compare to the walking foot when it comes to quilting.” You see, I love the walking foot on my 440. The first time I used it after buying that machine, it was like the clouds parted and the sun shined directly on me. πŸ™‚

Then, at quilt guild last week, my friend Catherine assured me that the dual feed on the 750 works great for quilting. Yep, I was still skeptical because I am really stubborn like that.

Straight Line Quilting : Fresh Lemons Quilts

So I thought I would do a little test. I set up my machine with the dual feed. I followed the recommended pressure foot settings for quilting from my manual. You can see on the screen above, I changed the pressure from 50 (the default) to -10, as recommended. I switched my needle to a 90/14 Machine Quilting needle and got to work. I stitched a line with the dual feed setup. Then I switched to my walking foot. Below, the dual feed line is on the left and the walking foot line is on the right.

Straight Line Quilting : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Ok, here it goes. I.Was.Wrong. Yep, the dual feed did an amazing job! And not so much the walking foot. I will say once I saw how good the dual feed was doing, I didn’t spend a ton of time tweaking my settings to try to make the walking foot look as good (messing with pressure foot settings and such).

*** Update *** This morning I spent some time testing settings again with the walking foot. With the right settings, the walking foot worked great, just as nicely as the dual feed. Below is a photo and the settings I used.

Fresh Lemons Quilts

Fabric and batting: Art Gallery Pure Elements Solid / Quilter’s Dream Cotton Request Loft
Dual Feed: Stitch Length 3.0 / Foot 1D / Foot Pressure -10
Walking Foot: Stitch Length 3.0 / Bernina Walking Foot / Foot Pressure 55

You can see the main difference is the pressure foot settings. I decreased it significantly from the default setting of 50 for quilting with the dual feed. I increased it just slightly for the walking foot. (This will depend on your type of fabric and batting. I use a very low loft batting.)

So there you go! Now I have the option of using both the walking foot AND the dual feed – I just need to check and double check my settings before getting started.

Straight Line Quilting : Fresh Lemons Quilts

So I’m going to spend much of today continuing with my straight lines. Over and over again. It always takes longer than I remembered, but it’s turning out great!



  1. Reply

    diana alexander

    April 29, 2014

    Ok…good for your for admitting you weren’t right πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to see this quilt!

  2. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    I was glad to read your post this morning, as I have had exactly the same experience with the dual feed on my 750. I had always been so happy with the walking foot when quilting with my 160, but I find that I can keep my lines straight more easily with the dual feed than with the walking foot. And by the way, thanks for all of your blog posts; I always enjoy reading them.

  3. Reply

    Liz Blois

    April 29, 2014

    This is so helpful in case I am ever able to upgrade my Bernina, its only a baby one.thank you

  4. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    straight line quilting is the only way I do machine quilting – of course as a hand quilter I don’t do a lot of machine quilting but straight line is the only way that is closest to what I like!

  5. Reply

    Lynne Tilley

    April 29, 2014

    I love the colors and the fabric pattern of this new quilt. I can’t wait to see it all finished. Wow on the dual feed! I adore my walking foot too. I wouldn’t have believed it either. πŸ™‚

  6. Reply

    Susan G

    April 29, 2014

    I also appreciate these task specific reviews of the the Bernina 750. Coming from someone whose word I trust and whose work I admire, they are invaluable.

  7. Reply

    Suzy Quilter

    April 29, 2014

    Such nice straight lines _ _ _ _ _ what do you use for a guide? There are no markings.

    • Reply


      April 29, 2014

      Hi Suzy! I just use the edge of my walking foot. I’m typically too lazy to mark anything. πŸ™‚ Also, I always start at a seam line that is (hopefully!) pretty straight. πŸ˜›

  8. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    Ohhh, thanks for this info! I have the 750 and never bothered to check the manual for settings for quilting — always just grabbed the walking foot. I’ll be giving the dual feed a shot. By the way, I love the quilt you’ve got in the works!

  9. Reply

    Camille Duridas

    April 29, 2014

    I have the Viking Designer One and am not familiar with the dual feed, any advice?

    • Reply


      April 29, 2014

      Hi Camille,

      The dual feed is a mechanism that feeds the fabric from the top, similar to what the feed dogs are doing from the bottom. If your machine doesn’t have the dual feed, you can still get great results with your straight line quilting. (I haven’t had dual feed the last 5 years). Make sure to use your walking foot if you have one. Also, make sure you don’t have too much pressure on your fabric, that will cause it to get bunched up and create puckers on the back of your quilt. You probably have some way on your machine to adjust the pressure, check your manual and it should tell you.

  10. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    I am more encouraged to give straight line quilting another go. thanks for the tips

  11. Reply

    Dana Henry

    April 29, 2014

    I am so excited over your “New” Bernina. It’s going to be my retirement machine!!!

  12. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    Wow that dual feed rocks! Love straight line quilting – this is going to be just lovely when it’s all quilted x

  13. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    I have the 750 also and I have used the walking foot for straight line quilting. I love the dual feed for piecing and I didn’t even think about checking the manual to adjust the settings!!! You are so clever! And THAT is why they are letting you “test drive” if for awhile. I suppose if you wanted to stitch lines farther apart then your foot, you would use the walking foot’s guide or mark your quilt. Have you thought of another way to get wider lines?

  14. Reply

    Janet Moilanen

    April 29, 2014

    I think the Janome Accufeed is similar to your Dual Feed on your Bernina. I too get better results than with a walking foot. It’s nice to be able to make adjustments to top & bottom feed when needed!

  15. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    That is awesome! ;p

  16. Reply

    Brenda Smith

    April 29, 2014

    Have you ever tried Hobbs Fusible 80/20 batting? It’s awesome. I never pin baste anymore. It changed my life! I just iron the top to the batting then turn it over and iron the back on. It’s not a permanent bond so you can lift up iron again or iron out any puckers before quilting. I have had a few quality issues with it not sticking occasionally so I pin in those spots if necessary but all in all THE greatest thing. I quilt for customers on my domestic machine and would never have the time to pin baste all those quilts.

  17. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    Maybe I should read the manual…I have the two machines you have, and have not had good luck straight line quilting with the dual feed. So, I retreated to the walking foot. I will try again with the suggested settings, and thank you for posting.

  18. Reply


    April 29, 2014

    This is really good to know. Maybe some day if I can get a new machine I’ll look for this. I have a very old Bernina right now and use a walking foot. Interesting the difference.

  19. Reply

    Lorna McMahon

    April 29, 2014

    Amazing the difference! You say you were wrong, but you were right to try them both. Now you are wise! Good luck with those lines. Intense! But they look sew good!

  20. Reply

    Angele Carter

    April 29, 2014

    I’m a sucker for straight line quilting. I can’t wait to see how this turns out. It’s very interesting to hear your thoughts on the sewing machine.

  21. Reply

    Serena @ Sewgiving

    April 30, 2014

    Wow that is quite a difference. I’ve just upgraded machines and have a new love for my walking foot, so I think I would have been sceptical too if I hadn’t seen your pic πŸ™‚

  22. Reply


    April 30, 2014

    Oh dear! Now I want a new Bernina sewing machine with a dual feed!

  23. Reply


    April 30, 2014

    Every post since you got that new Bernina is tempting me! That thing is amazing. All those yellow fabrics s\look so good together, I might have to go and make myself a yellow.

  24. Reply

    Catherine Redford

    May 2, 2014

    So glad you tried it! Did you use a 20D or the 37D? So many options await you:)

    • Reply


      May 4, 2014

      Hi Catherine! I used the 1D actually. Worked great! I just finished 170 lines and am quite sore now. πŸ™‚

  25. Reply

    Carol Linhart

    May 6, 2014

    I love straight line quilting…thank you for the inspiration…I would love to have a Bernina!

  26. Reply

    Barbara Sindlinger

    May 7, 2014

    I just got my 750QEE 2 weeks ago and I love it. I did use the dual feed quilt for a small art piece and it worked fine – I didn’t even change the pressure setting – I guess I should have read the manual. I have also used my walking foot from my 640 and it worked just fine too. I am following you on Facebook now so I can follow your journey with your 750.

  27. Reply

    Phyllis Moynihan

    May 8, 2014

    Thanks for the demonstration of straight line quilting. I really need to try it out. Also, thanks for the great giveaways!

  28. Reply

    Michelle in NH

    May 8, 2014

    Great review of the dual feed and straight-line quilting! As a new owner of an Bernina 750, I’m looking forward to your adventure exploring your new machine. Thank you!

  29. Reply

    Shaeon Kalmes

    May 8, 2014

    I have just purchased the 750QE. I have been looking where you found the changes to straight quilting with dual feed. I am looking forward to getting instructions on the machine. I am just getting acquainted until my classes are scheduled. But have not found anything in the instructions on changing pressure or needle.

    • Reply


      May 9, 2014

      Hi Sharon! To change the presser foot pressure, press the “i” icon on the screen, next to the picture of the stitch that you are currently sewing. Sort of in the middle of the screen. This is where a lot of the stitching settings are located. Touch the icon now that looks like a presser foot with a weight on top of it. Then you will get to the screen I show in the blog post. If you turn your dial, it will adjust the pressure.

      For changing the needle, you need to use a little tool that came with your machine to unscrew it. I’m sure they will go over that in your class. πŸ™‚

  30. Reply


    May 12, 2014

    I think I would miss the bar attachment on the walking foot for varied distances. Wish it could have be incorporated into the dual feed foot.

    • Reply


      May 12, 2014

      Hi CJ – there is a bar that you can slide through the foot when you dual feed as well. The foot I was using (1D) has holes in it and a tightener and the machine comes with a bar. Let me see if I can upload a photo into this comment for you. πŸ™‚

  31. Reply


    May 13, 2014

    Faith, when you straight line quilt, so you start with quilted line in the middle and work outward toward the end or do you quilt one end to the other? I usually stipple all over but would love to get the straight line thing happening! Thanks

    • Reply


      May 13, 2014

      Hi Adele – I start with a straight line in the middle and work my way out to the sides.

  32. Reply


    May 14, 2014

    I bought my Bernina 750 QE about a year ago and consider it a waste of thousands of dollars. It has never sewn a straight and even line. Shop where purchased has been no help at all. Obviously I have a dud as yours seems to work a dream!

    • Reply


      May 15, 2014

      I’m so sorry to hear you are having trouble with your machine Jacqueline! I see you are in Australia, I would encourage you to contact Customer Service at Bernina of Australia and talk to them about your machine and dealer concerns.

  33. Reply


    May 15, 2014

    I am a novice quilter and am not quite understanding your process. Do you start in the middle of the quilt at the edge of the fabric and work all the way down to the other edge or do you start in the middle and work from the middle to the edge of the fabric and then go back to the middle and continue sewing in the other direction?

  34. Reply


    September 15, 2015

    Just happened across this post (I visit your space often). I have a 750QE. I love the dual feed, and I love straight-line quilting. I’m just not very good at making my sandwich with the batting, backing, and top smooth and having it all come out in a lovely fashion. Practice… However, I appreciate immensely the comments about your experience with the 750. I shall try the settings you used and see if my quilts come out better. Thank you so much!

  35. Reply


    November 29, 2016

    When you do straight line quilting, do you just continue one after the other in the same direction? I’ve tried it and my quilts go off kilter. I find I have to do have in one direction and turn the quilt around and do the other half towards the opposite direction.

    Please share your secret to keeping quilts somewhat squared when doing straight line quilting.

    • Reply


      December 1, 2016

      Hi Maureen – Yes, I do half my quilts all in one direction, then flip the quilt and do the other half all in the opposite direction. Do you think your pressure foot is putting too much pressure on the quilt and pushing it a bit while you are quilting? I would suggest trying to lessen that pressure setting and see if you have a more successful result. πŸ™‚

  36. Reply

    Phoebe Ingraham

    May 27, 2017

    Thank you so much for this post! I read your blog regularly, and have your book. I retired 2 years ago and have been enjoying time with my 42 year old Bernina 830. A “vintage” machine that still sews like a dream! I have saved your posts on your new Bernina just in case I decided to go for the upgrade. I did buy a walking foot and was thrilled Bernina made one that worked on my older machine. It was, just as you said, like the clouds opened! Recently, I found a new Bernina 710 (there are a few still available) and could not resist the marked down price. I love it! Sadly, my walking foot doesn’t fit on this new machine, so I was concerned about only having the dual feed to straight line quilt. I’m taking lessons from my local dealer and she also assured me I wouldn’t need to purchase a new walking foot. Like you, I was not convinced. I found this post and cannot thank you enough for the visual comparison and instruction on 1- checking the instruction manual, 2-changing the foot pressure, and 3-your responses to questions! I aplogize for this very long response, but I’ve read several complaints on the expense of the Bernina from unhappy sewists. Your posts are both calming and instructional! I cannot thank you enough. I’m so happy with both my Berninas, but it takes practice, instruction, and patience to learn how to get the most from any new machine. Thank you, and thanks to Bernina, to allow great quilting bloggers like you to support us all!