Open Toe Walking Foot
What is an open toe walking foot?
Luckily, I have kept my older, closed toe walking foot and I can show you a picture of the difference between the two.
This first photo shows my older version of this sewing machine foot.
Notice all the metal between the two 'toes'.
If you are trying to stitch in the ditch or follow a draw quilting line, there is just too much extra foot in the way. It's harder to see exactly where the needle is entering the fabric.
And for ditch quilting in particular, your eyes need to be on where the needle is in relation to the ditch or the 'well of the seam'.
The photo to the right shows an 'open toe' walking foot.
Notice how much easier it'd be to see the needle... you can see everything between the two 'toes' of the foot. There is no metal, no plastic interfering with your view of where the needle pierces the fabric to make a stitch.
Which do I prefer?
The open toe is far and away my favorite walking foot to use. But, buying a new one can be pricey. The last one I bought was around $80 and they do wear out.
If you are not ready to spend for this improved version of a walking foot, perhaps you could use a Dremel to 'file' out part of the metal between the toes to give yourself a better view of the needle. I have not done this myself, but have friends who have. You'd need to know how to use your Dremel.
I hope this helps. Good question!