What Baaatting Do You Like?

 

A picture of a sheep being shown at the Wayne County Fair in New York, August 2014

A picture of a sheep being shown at the Wayne County Fair in New York, August 2014

I couldn’t resist.

This furry friend had his picture taken at the Wayne County, NY Fair, which is held in Palmyra, NY, hometown of both Sue and I. I thought, what better way to talk about quilt batting then with a big wooly sheep.

About a month ago, Quilters Dream Batting sent me samples of their batting. I’m not sure why. I think I got on their mailing list when I went to Quilt Market, and also I design/make quilts. So I suppose that’s my answer. Anyway, there are some battings that I particularly like and some, not so much.

I must confess, I rarely do my own quilting. Margaret Leuwen, Sue’s sister and owner of Miss Marker’s Quilts, does almost all my quilting. She also provides all the batting. So I really can only tell you I like a particular batting because of its feel. I love the feel of a cotton batting and I’m quite sure that’s what Margaret uses for my quilts, which are wall hangings. Sorry Mr. Sheep. Of course, if we are speaking simply of softness, Quilters Dream has something called Quilters Dream Orient, which is a blend of bamboo, silk and botanic Tencel. It’s such a fine softness that it’s almost unfeelable, if that makes any sense at all. It’s silky.

I checked with O’Susannah’s to see which battings they offered and I spoke to the incredibly talented Sharon Bristol. She gave me some guidelines on selecting batting so I thought I would share those with you. From Sharon:

1. What do you want the end result to look like?
2. Will it hang on a wall?
3. Will it be used on a bed?
4. Will it be used by a child?

Those questions should give you a start.

A few of the battings that Sue carries are:
1. Warm & Natural
2. Quilters Dream Cotton
3. Quilters Dream Poly

Each of the above can have options such as different lofts.

Sharon offers these suggestions:

“If you are looking for a vintage look, use the Warm & Natural. It will shrink just a bit. If your piece is for a child, use the Quilters Dream Poly for washability. It really depends on the finished outcome of your quilt.”

I have provided a couple pictures of the sample card I received from Quilters Dream. A little further down this post I explain what each one is. I for one, really want to try a couple of these battings and just see how they work. Let me know if you try any of them and how you feel about them.

Quilters Dream Batting sample card

Quilters Dream Batting sample card

Quilters Dream Batting sample card

Quilters Dream Batting sample card

The following information was taken from the Quilters Dream sample card.

Quilters Dream Cotton. 100% pure cotton batting.
Beautiful 100% pure cotton batting.
Proudly grown and made in the U.S.A.
Incredibly soft yet strong, stitch up to 8″ apart.
No scrims, glues, or resins.
No need to prewash–minimal shrinkage.
Carded, crosslapped & needlepunched for strength.
Dreamy for hand & machine quilting.
Available in four lofts: 1. Request 2. Select 3. Deluxe 4. Supreme.

Quilters Dream Poly
Newest fine denier microfibers
Thoroughly modern choice with no shrinkage and very wrinkle resistant.
Stitches up to 12″ apart. Can be tied.
Not polyester as usual–silky & soft.
Wonderful for hand & machine quilting.
No resins, glue or binders.
Breathable and comfortable.
Also available in Deep Midnight Black in the Select Loft.
Available in three lofts: 1. Request 2. Select 3. Deluxe.

Quilters Dream Angel. Heavenly batting made 100% of flame retardant fibers.
Special engineered man-made fibers are inherently flame retardant–NO chemical added.
Fibers will not melt or flow when in contact with flame.
Passed California 60 test for open flame resistance.
soft and beautiful.
Stitches up to 6″ apart.
May be machine washed & dried.
Heavenly for hand & machine quilting.
Available in two lofts: 1. Request 2. Select.

Quilters Dream Blend for Machines.
70% cleaned natural cotton and 30% silky fine denier polyester blended in perfect harmony and then needlepunched onto an ultralight scrim base.
Perfect for machine quilting and tied quilts.
Strong  stable yet soft  drapeable.
Stitches up to 12″ apart.
no prewashing required.
Will not stretch, pucker or bunch. Perfect for short and long arm machines. Available in Select Loft.

Quilters Dream Green. Truly green batting made from 100% recycled plastic bottles.
New generation of soft cozy polyester fiber made 100% from recycled plastic bottles.
Clearly pro-environmental in both its raw materials and in the close-the-loop manufacturing process.
Each pound of Dream Green equals 10 bottles saved from burdening our landfills.
Except for the light green “natural” bottle color, the quality , function and drape are indistinguishable from virgin polyester batting.
Dream Green may be machine washed and dried with little to no shrinkage. Resists wrinkles.
Excellent for hand & machine quilting.
Stitch up to 10″ apart. Can be tied.
Available in Select Loft.

Quilters Dream Orient. Luxurious blend of bamboo, silk & botanic Tencel.
East meets west in this exotic blend of bamboo, silk, cotton and botanic Tencel.
Stitch up to 8″ apart.
No resins, scrim or binders-luxurious fibers only.
Incredibly soft, silky and luxuriously drapeable.
May be machine washed and dried.
Incredibly dreamy for both hand and machine quilting.
Available in Select Loft.

Quilters DreamWool.
A beautiful, consistent batting with the rich natural qualities of wool.
Made with a blend of fine domestic and merino wool.
Scoured & super-washed for superior cleanliness.
May be machine-washed and dried. No shrinkage.
Stitch up to 8″ apart. No scrim or resins.
Light and luxurious with wonderful warmth and a lovely soft drape.
Exceptionally comfortable and breathable.
Carded, crosslapped and thermally bonded for uniformity, loft, strength and resiliency.
Excellent for hand & machine quilting.
Perfect lofts for all of your quilted projects.

Quilters Dream Puff. Light as a feather and warmer than down.
Lusciously light & lofty batting. Dream Puff imparts volume and definition without adding weight.
Superior insulation with amazing warmth and breathability. Dream Puff’s special silky soft fibers are 1.5 times warmer than down.
Stitches up to 10″ apart.
May be machine washed & dried. Dream Puff will not shrink. Will not hold a crease.
Excellent for hand and machine quilting and for tied quilts, trapunto, comforters and wearables.
Resilient loft of 1/3 inch. Can be easily layered for even greater loft.

Quilters Dream Fusion. Fusible dream cotton batting.
Exceptionally soft and drapeable. Natural Dream Cotton Batting is infused with the softest fusible fibers.
The beauty in Dream Cotton with the convenience of a built-in fusible web.
Simply layer with fabric-iron-and your quilt top or bottom is layered seamlessly with your Dream Fusion Cotton Batting.
You can stitch or tie up to 8″ apart.
Finished quilt may be machine washed a& dried using cool water & cool dryer.
Excellent for machine quilting, embroidery, tied quilts, clothing, purses, bags and all your craft projects.
May also be hand quilted.
Available in Request and Select Lofts.

Quilters Dream Fusion Fusible Dream Poly Batting.
Exceptionally soft and drapeable Dream Poly Batting is infused with the softest fusible fibers.
The quality of Dream Poly with the convenience of a built-in-fusible web.
Simply layer with fabric-iron-and your quilt top or bottom is layered seamlessly with your Dream Fusion Poly Batting.
You can stitch or tie up to 12″ apart.
Finished quilt may be machine washed & dried using cool water & cool dryer.
Excellent for machine quilting, embroidery, tied quilts, clothing, purses, bags and all your craft projects.
Available in Select Lofts.

I would love to hear how you use battings like these, and what your experiences have been. –Betsy
Quilt away! Don’t forget to comment, share, pin and post!

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You are my sunshine, my only sunshine!

You make me haaaaapppy, when skies are gray….. Yes, dear blog followers, you make me happy. And now I hope this little post will make you or someone else happy, too.

As promised a few days ago, here are the directions for making this adorable piece of wall art that Sue made for her little granddaughter. It’s as easy as pie.

TRIVIA: “You are my Sunshine” was originally written in 1940 by Louisiana Governor Jimmie Davis and Charles Mitchell. Louisiana has two official state songs and, by golly, this is one of them! (Source: http://kids.niehs.nih.gov/games/songs/childrens/sunshinemp3.htm)

You are my sunshine wall art

You are my Sunshine easy wall art to decorate your children’s or grandchildren’s bedroom walls

Here are the instructions in 10 easy steps – straight from Sue…

SUPPLIES
16” x 20” artist canvas
White fabric large enough to cover the canvas
Yellow fabric for the sun
Frixion pen
Cosmos embroidery floss in colors of your choice
4 buttons
Batting – a piece large enough to fold over the canvas

DIRECTIONS

  1. Stretch the white fabric over the canvas and temporarily hold it there with masking tape.
  2. With your Frixion pen, draw your designs. Suggestions include flowers, trees, sailboats, dogs, cats, bunnies, birds, houses or whatever makes you happy. (Both Sue and I can strongly recommend taking a beginning art class. You will learn so much and gain a lot of confidence. My local library offers a Saturday Studio once a month which my husband and I attend regularly. They are wonderful and very inexpensive. Check you your library and see if they offer something similar.)
  3. Once you’re happy with your design, start stitching.
  4. The stitches Sue used were the running stitch, back stitch and French knots. There are many resources online for how to work stitches but if this is something you would like to see here on the blog, leave a comment and we’ll see what we can do to oblige.
  5. Appliqué your sun to the white background fabric.
  6. When you are happy with your stitching, add the buttons.
  7. Remove your piece from the canvas.
  8. Cover the canvas with your batting and then your stitched piece on top of that.
  9. When in place, staple it all to the back of the canvas to secure.
  10. Hang it up!

Do You Design?

Both of us do some pattern design from time to time. Neither one of us finds it too terribly difficult. I think one of the hardest parts of pattern design is getting it ready for others to use. However, if you are making a pattern strictly for your own use, it really isn’t that hard.

So, I have a question…have you ever created your own quilt or craft pattern?

If so, here are some other questions…

  1. What did you design?
  2. How did you go about it? Did you just sketch out a preliminary idea? Did you use graph paper? Have you just whipped something up as you went along (this would scare the heck out of me!).
  3. Where did you get your inspiration from?

In the next couple of days I’ll be blogging about the cutest piece of wall art Sue made for her little granddaughter for Christmas. Here’s a picture of the finished project. Sue made this in an evening and so can you, I’m pretty sure. By the way, “You are my Sunshine” is one of the first songs MY little granddaughter learned to sing. It’s a favorite.Image