I offer quite a few different battings. And it can be confusing. But to help with that, here are my thoughts...
There are lots of wonderful batting manufacturers such as The Warm Company, Hobbs, Mountain Mist, and of course my favorite, Quilters Dream. Most battings are very nice, but there are some that I have come across, that are not.
So before I get into the types of quilts and the battings that work best with them. I would like to steer you away from battings that give me problems while quilting. These are…
- Poly-fil Hi-Loft 100% Polyester batting by Fairfield. I have found this batting to be really rough. And I get an enormous amount of thread breaks while quilting no matter what thread, needle size or speed I use. Also the finished quilts feel stiff no matter how much or how little they are quilted. I am to the point that I will not use this batting and will return it to the customer.
If you want a squishy, huggable quilt, my go to battings are either wool or the Orient/Bamboo by Quilters Dream. It really doesn't matter so much how densely a quilt is quilted, but much more so on what batting you choose. Also wool and Orient/Bamboo have a beautiful drape. And wool won't wrinkle. So if you are sending your quilt to a show or plan to store it folded and don't want it creased, wool would be a good choice.
For an heirloom look, my choice would be cotton. But beware, cotton makes for a stiff quilt. So if you like dense quilting you would want to choose a different batting.
For a wallhanging I would use 2 layers of batting. Either 2 layers of 80/20 or one layer of either the 80/20 with wool on top, or a layer of Orient/Bamboo with wool on top. This will give a nice 3D effect for the quilting and gives a bit of a stiffer drape which is very nice for a wall hanging.
For a baby quilt that will be used and abused and you don't want to worry about how often you wash it, my choice would be polyester. I offer the "Puff" poly in white which is a high loft poly, and the regular poly in black. For a standard loft in white or natural, I suggest the 80/20.
For a quilt that's mostly black or really dark, you may want to go with a black batting. This can make a difference depending on the fabric weave density of your top and/or backing. If it's a loose weave the batting can poke through. And that will be much less noticeable/almost invisible if the batting is as dark as your fabric.
If you can't decide, the batting I use on most all quilts is the standard 80/20 in either white or natural. If you can't decide, or don't want to think about it :-), go with the 8020. That's always a good choice.
These are wonderful backings which make for a very squishy, huggable quilt. And I've quilted them onto quilts. They are wonderful. But be aware, if there are fluffy fibers on the wrong side of the backing, the side that touches the batting, those fibers will pull through the quilt top. You will see these fibers poking through your quilt top.
To avoid these pokies, make sure that the backing is a nice tight weave on the wrong side, the side that will touch the batting. Again, any fluff on this side will pull and poke through the quilt top.
One of the very popular services I offer is adding binding to your quilt. Either just stitching it by machine to the quilt top for you to hand sew onto the quilt back, or I can attach both sides of the binding for you.
You can prepare the binding for me to sew on, or you can simply include yardage and I will take care of everything for you.
But if you want to prepare your binding ...
1. cut the strips either 2 1/2" or 2 1/4" wide
2. sew the strips together on a 45 degree angle
That's it. DON'T press the strips in 1/2 lengthwise. It's easier for me to simply fold the fabric in 1/2 as I go, rather than fight with 2 edges that don't line up perfectly.
Yes, that's a great way to use up that extra fabric. And you'll know you have enough for the binding.
The extra backing fabric is so that I can attach your quilt back to my longarm rails. But why 5" you ask? That's a lot! Yes it is. But please trust me, give me that much extra. What if you don't have that much extra. Well, in a pinch, we can work with that as long as you have at least a couple extra inches all around. If that's the case, find some scrap fabric 5" wide and baste it to all 4 sides of your backing.
Yes, that's fine. I am happy to piece your backing for you.
Yes you can. In fact for my personal quilts I love doing that. But we will have to take that into consideration when deciding how to quilt your quilt. If there's a lot of piecing on the top and a lot of piecing on the back, the chances that those seams and/or intersections will lay on top of each other will be a problem. We can discuss this more when you drop off your quilt.