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What’s The Difference Between Quilting And Sewing Machine?

What’s The Difference Between Quilting And Sewing Machine

Quilting is stitching two layers of fabric to create a quilt while the sewing machine is a simple machine to sew clothes. The history of early decorative quilting dates back to the 14th century. On the other hand, from the time of the caveman, sewing tradition is present.

Many features differentiate a quilting machine from that of a sewing one. For instance, a quilting machine is specified for stitching two fabrics while the sewing machine is used for the stitching of fabric.

The important feature that distinguishes quilting machines from sewing machines is a workspace, extension table, optional feet, and an open-toe version in some quilting machines.

These features are discussed in detail in contrast to the sewing machine. 

Space requirement

Workspace in quilting machines is far more spacious than the space provided by the sewing machines. A quilting machine is a tool that gives a great space because of its large throat.

If the machine is long, then the throat will also belong because it is directly proportional to its length. However, the sewing machine will not provide this feature.

Large space requirement is not a need for minor tasks such as home décor and easy sewing. But for quilting and other large projects, it is necessary to have a large area for work. In contrast, the sewing machine does not offer such a spacious area for work yet they are useful in the domain of simple sewing.

Extension Table

The other significant feature that differentiates a quilting machine from that of a sewing machine is the presence of an extension table.

An extension table is a requirement of a quilting machine. Having an extension table in small projects is definitely a luxury, but for a large project or heavy task, it is a necessity.

For a quilting machine, it is necessary to have an extension table so that different broader tasks can be performed. However, this accessory is absent in a simple sewing machine, which requires less area to get adjusted.

Speed and stability

Sewing speed and stability are also important. In this era of advancement, time is money. The better the speed and stability, the better the outcome.

From this perspective, the quilting machine performs rather better in terms of speed and stability as the latest technologies are equipped in it. On the other hand, a sewing machine lacks that much speed and stability and falls back in this regard.

Variety of Stitches

A sewing machine is best for simple sewing, but you cannot ask for variety from a sewing machine. However, this requirement is fulfilled by a quilting machine as it has diversity in the number of stitches.

Around 200 built-in stitches are offered by most of the quilting machines. These different types of stitches give wide exposure to variety and form new beautiful designs.

To add spices of style, color, and decoration to your sewing, a quilting machine is there to add them up. While the sewing machine doesn’t let you enjoy this option, so, that’s another consequence of keeping a sewing machine.


For better and fast sewing of clothes or for quilts, an inch foot is a valid feature. All quilting machines come with this option.

Following are the foot options given in different quilting machines:

  • The Quarter Inch Piecing Foot

It allows a high-quality result in both large and small projects even in narrow seam allowances. It also offers great accuracy even in difficult quilts of multiple layers.

This feature gives great precision from top to bottom.

  • Darning or free motion foot

This foot minimizes the number of skipped stitches and ensures proper stitches. Also, it protects your finger with great efficiency and accuracy. Additionally, it also enhances visibility while stitching because of the open-toe version that comes with this foot. 

If you are new in the profession of free quilting, this feature will not only protect you but will also make your free quilting easier and a lot of fun.

  • Walking foot

When you have heavy projects or multiple layers of fabric to get done, this foot is your help to do work easily. Furthermore, it is also of great help in slippery fabrics.

It can come as an optional accessory in some quilting machines.

It is the second pair of free dogs that will assist you in any project. It boosts up the speed of your task.

Open toe 

This unique feature is not offered by every quilting or sewing machine. However, it is of great significance if you are someone with low eyesight. It increases the visibility through which the user can see the stitching easily and more precisely.

Clear view help through this open-toe version to increase clarity. With a lot of colors and designs, this feature gives a spark to your product that is being stitched. Plus, this feature is mostly present in quilting machines rather than sewing machines.

Feature Comparison Between Quilting Machine And Sewing Machine

Quilting machine

  • Optional foots
  • Open toe
  • Variety of stitches
  • Excellent for quilts
  • Great at speed and stability
  • Safe

Sewing machine

  • Only one or two optional foots
  • Doesn’t have a variety of stitches
  • Work fine for quilts but good for other minor tasks
  • Fine speed and stability
  • Safe

Need of Quilting Machine: 

If you are a quilter and you have worked doing quilting, then a quilting machine is appropriate. Quilting machine offers quilting with a higher level of accuracy.

Need of Sewing Machine: 

Minor tasks can be done easily with a sewing machine. It lacks some features but still is convenient for small décor, single stitching, and fast DIY fashion hacks of clothes.

Wrapping Things Up: 

Sewing machines have an older history. However, quilting machines are an advanced form of sewing machines. It is obvious that quilting machines have more features as compared to sewing machines.

Additionally, if you have minor tasks such as small décor items or simple cloth stitching, the sewing machine will work great. But if you have other major tasks like quilting, combining multiple fabrics with a heavy quilt, then a quilting machine is an excellent option that you can have.

That would be all regarding the major differences. Feel free to ask any relevant questions, and we’ll be more than happy to help you.

Good Luck!!

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