Sewing Machine Feet for Quilting

There are always four feet by my side when I quilt. Whether I am piecing or in the actual quilting phase, these feet do the trick. No matter which brand sewing machine you use, they all carry similar feet. I happen to have a Bernina which I have used for many years. All of these feet should be available for your brand of sewing machine.  Read on for my reasoning for why these are the must-have feet for quilting!

And the feet are….drum roll please!


For piecing, a quarter inch foot is a necessity, a must have, a cannot live without. Piecing must be precise in order for the quilt top to fit together perfectly. Since quilters use quarter inch seams, this foot makes it easy to maintain that precision. The fabric lines up along the outer edge of either side of the foot allowing the needle to be in the perfect place for a 1/4″ seam. Piecing is where it all begins, getting it exact from the start is a major factor to a flat-lying quilt.


The next most important foot I recommend is the walking foot. This foot has a mechanism which makes the feet move up and down on top like the feed dogs move up and down below. This keeps both the top and bottom fabric in sync when you sew and eliminates fabric shifting and getting out of line. I don’t typically use this foot for piecing, but it can be used, especially for slick or thicker fabrics. This foot is a must for straight line quilting. The space this foot gives around the needle allows for use of decorative stitches as well.


If you like to quilt your own quilts, you will need a free motion foot. If you piece, and then send your top off to be quilted, you wouldn’t need this foot. However, I enjoy all stages of quilting and I wouldn’t be able to quilt without it. I prefer this clear foot. Some of the free motion feet are a metal circle. The clear foot makes it easier to see what I’m doing. If you haven’t yet learned to free motion quilt, I highly recommend taking a class and then biting the bullet and going for it!


My final favorite foot is the ruler foot. Ruler work is a fairly new style of quilting. The idea is to hold a ruler in place with one hand while moving the foot along the side of the ruler to hold the shape of the ruler. The foot does not move up and and down while you sew so it will glide along the side of the ruler easily. I first learned by taking this Craftsy class by Amy Johnson. She is a great teacher. It wasn’t as easy as it looks getting started. However, once you get the hang of it, ruler work opens up a world of possibilities for quilting.

What about you?

These are the four feet always at my fingertips when I quilt. What are your favorites?

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