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What is an open toe darning foot?

by Chris

What does the open toe darning foot do?


The darning or hopping foot is used for free motion quilting. The "open toe" version of this foot is what I use most for free motion quilting.

Open Toe Darning or Quilting Foot

Open Toe
Darning Foot

It allows you to see directly where the needle pierces the fabric when you are machine quilting because the front of the foot is open.

This is an advantage when stitching tiny background fill designs or if you're following a marked quilting line with free motion stitching.

A "closed" toe (shown below) is a continuous piece of metal or plastic that surrounds the foot. I find this version of a darning foot both harder to thread and harder to see through...even if the foot is made of clear plastic.

Closed Toe Darning or Quilting Foot

Closed Toe
Darning Foot
The closed toe is good for quilting over dimensional or loopy "stuff". There are no "toes" to catch in loops of thread or fabric.

Each of the two quilting feet shown have offset shanks. This makes quilting backwards just so much easier and I would suggest that whichever version (open or closed) that you use, that you make sure it has an offset shank.

Other articles you may be interested in:

How to Modify a Quilting or Darning Foot

Use a Darning Foot for Free Motion Quilting

Glad to be of help!


Julie Baird

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