Friday, November 11, 2011

I am sorry I have not posted the results but its not because I have not done them it is because I still have not received the batting samples from Innovative Craft Products. I wrote them again but still nothing, so frustrating! I just don't understand as I spoke to them on the phone and they seemed excited to be included in my project. I got all ready to test these products as I love making totes and purses I had a personal interest as well. If I come across these products at my LQS I may go ahead and purchase and test for bag/tote making as I know how many quilters enjoy making these (even though we already have so many) It's "sew" addictive!

Monday, September 19, 2011

New batting samples are on the way!

Have some new batting samples from Innovative Craft Products on the way for me to test, these were created for making bags, totes and purses (I am told they will give your tote/purse  projects that "Vera Bradley" feel) They are including a stiff, non-woven fusible product called Inn-spire that can be used to mold fabrics into a desired shape,which could be used to mold purses and bags or if you are an art quilter this might be right up your alley! Here is a link to the products:

I'll let you know what I think when I get my samples made.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Just finshed the batting samples for Matilda's own brand

I received 4 samples from Matilda's Own line a 100% wool batt, a wool/cotton blend, a wool/poly blend and I believe the last one is a Silk/cotton blend but I am not 100% percent sure and have put in a call to the person who sent them to me to make sure as I cetainly do not want to mislabel any samples. That puts the grand total to 87 different samples! These are from a line of batts from Australia, all are needle punched with a light scrim and no binders. For more info on the batting line see the link below-

Friday, March 18, 2011

More batting samples on their way!

Finally was able to make contact with Matilda's and have samples of their batting line on the way!!
Off to buy more muslin to prepare to make samples when the batting arrives!

Friday, March 11, 2011

NEW List of battings tested thus far 3/11/2011

Hobbs (12) 200 S Commerce Dr Waco TX 76710 1-800-433-3357

1. Tuscany Polyester- siliconized resin bonded

2. Polydown-Polyester siliconized resin bonded

3. Thermore-Polyester resin bonded ultra thin patented process

4. Tuscany Silk -90%/10% polyester lightly needle punched light resin bonded

5. Tucany Wool -100% resin bonded

6. Heirloom Cotton Fusible- 80% cotton 20% Polyester resin bonding contains a fusible chemical that fuses to both sides.

7. Heirloom bleached -80% bleached cotton 20% polyester lightly resin bonded

8. Heirloom Black- 80% cotton 20% polyester lightly needle punched resin bonded

9. Heirloom Premium -80% cotton 20% polyester un-bleached lightly resin bonded needle punched

*10. Heirloom Natural -100% organic cotton needle punched

11. Heirloom Bleached- 100%cotton needle punched

12. Heirloom Natural -w/ scrim un-bleached needle punched

Quilters Dream (9) 589 Central Dr. Virginia Beach, VA 23454 1-888-268-8664

13. Dream Poly- request loft 100% polyester needle punched no resin no scrim

14. Dream Poly- select loft 100% polyester needle punched no resin no scrim

*15. Dream Orient- select loft silk, tencel, bamboo and cotton blend needle punched no resin no scrim

16. Dream Green -select loft 100% recycled plastic bottles needle punched no resin no scrim

17.Dream Cotton -request loft 100% cotton needle punched no resin no scrim

18. Dream Blend- select loft 70% cotton 30% polyester needle punched ultra light scrim

19. Dream Cotton -select loft 100% cotton needle punched no scrim no resin

20. Dream Midnight -black request loft 100% polyester needle punched no resin no scrim

21. Dream Angel -request loft 100% flame retardant fibers needle punched

Mountain Mist (8) 2551 Crescentville Rd. Cincinnati, OH 45241 1-513-326-3912

22. Blue Ribbon- 100% cotton needle punched water soluble resin bonded

23. Cream Rose -100% cotton needle punched no scrim no resin

24. Cotton Blossom- 95% cotton 5 % wool resin bonded

25.Cotton Blossom- 95% cotton 5 % silk resin bonded

26. Mountain Mist -Light 100% polyester resin bonded

27. Mountain Mist Gold -50% cotton 50% polyester needle punched resin bonded

28. Heritage Collection Completely Cotton -100% cotton lightly needle punched resin bonded

29. Eco Craft -50% PLA (corn) 50% cotton carded resin bonded

Fairfield (12) P.O. Box 1130 Danbury CT 06813 1-800-980-8000

30.Poly-fil low loft- 100% polyester low melt bonded

31.Poly-fil Traditional Craft Batt- 100% poly needle punched

32.Poly-fil Hi Loft -100% poly low melt bonded

33. Poly-fil Extra loft batting- 100% poly low melt bonded

34. Fairfield Machine 60/40 -60%bleached Cotton/40%Poly needle punched w/ scrim

35. Fairfield Soft Touch -100% bleached cotton needle punched No scrim or seed waste

36.Fairfield Quilters -80/20 Blend unbleached 80%cotton/20% poly needle punched

*37.Fairfield Cotton Classic- 100% Organic cotton no scrim unbleached water based bonding

*38. Fairfield Bamboo Batting- 50% organic cotton 50% bamboo needle punched w/ scrim

39.Fairfield Fusi Boo- bamboo, rayon, cotton blend, Fusible, needle punched

*40.Fairfield Wool -100% wool, resin bonded, unbleached

*41. Nature-Fil- 50% rayon from Bamboo 50% organic cotton, needle punched w/ scrim

Fiberco (10) 1300 Eden Drive Ft Worth, TX 76117 1-800-828-3778

42. Simply Cotton -100% cotton bleached needle punched w/ scrim

43. Soy Soft- unbleached 50% cotton 50% soy needle punched w/ scrim

*44. Bamboo Blend -50%certified organic bamboo 50%Ultra-Clean ® cotton unbleached needle punched w/scrim

45. Simply Cotton -100% unbleached needle punched w/ scrim

*46. Earth Blend -50% Flax 50% cotton unbleached needle punched w/scrim

47. Simply Bamboo- 100% bamboo unbleached needle punched w/ scrim

48. Simply Soft and Safe- 100% Rayon needle punched

49. Poly Perfect -100% polyester needle punched w/ scrim

50. Soft & Elegant-80% cotton 20% poly unbleached needle punched w/scrim

51. Super Soft Cotton- 50% bleached cotton 50% slick poly needle punched w/scrim

Back to Back Alpaca(2) 5901 E McKellips Suite 109 Mesa, AZ 85215 1-480-445-9068

52. 50/50 Alpaca/ Cotton- needle punched unbleached

53. 60/40 Alpaca/Wool -needle punched unbleached

Moda (3) 13800 Hutton Dr. Dallas, TX 75234

*54. Luna Kyoto- 50%Bamboo 50% Cotton unbleached needle punched w/scrim

*55. Luna Loft -80% Cotton 20% poly unbleached needle punched w/ scrim

56. Soy Soft - 50% Soy 50% Cotton unbleached needle punched w/ scrim

The Warm Co (7). 5529 186th Place SW Lynnwood, WA 98037 1-425-248-2424

57.Soft & Natural-100% cotton unbleached needle punched no scrim

58. Warm Blend -50% cotton 50% poly bleached needle punched w/ scrim

59. Insul-Bright -100% hollow polyester needle punched through metalized insulating poly

60. Warm & Natural- 100%cotton unbleached needle punched w/ scrim

61. Warm & Safe- 100% Rayon needle punched w/ scrim

62 Soft & Bright -100% hollow Polyester needle punched w/ scrim

63. Warm & White -100% bleached cotton needle punched w/ scrim

Other (1) included in the Warm samples but NOT a Warm Co. product

64. 100% Cotton flannel -purchased by the yard at Joann’s

Whisper Color (1) 5709 Ravenswood Lane Carmichael, CA 95608 1-916-531-3163

65. Whisper Color -100% Bamboo unbleached needle punched thin scrim

Cedarview Farms (1) 1-519-864-4470 3028 Kimball Road Courtright, ON

*66. 100% Wool-open batt no scrim no resins

Pellon –Legacy (17) 1- 727-388-7171

67. Soy Blend -50% Soy 50% cotton needle punched w/ scrim

68. Bamboo Blend-50%cotton/50%bamboo blend, needle punched w/ scrim

69. White Cotton-100% bleached cotton, needle punched, no scrim

*70. Natural Cotton- 100% natural cotton needle punched, no scrim

*71. Wool- 100% super washed wool thermal bonded w/ binder fibers

72. Natural 80/20 Blend- 80% cotton/20% poly, needle punched bonded, no scrim

73. 100% Polyester- Bonded (pre-test on dark fabrics for bearding) no scrim

74. 100% White cotton w/s-100 % bleached cotton, needle punched with scrim

75. 100% Natural Cotton w/s-unbleached, needle punched with scrim

76. Natural Blend 80%cotton/ 20% polyester, needle punched to a light scrim

77. Light Blend-50%bleached cotton/50%slick polyester, needle punched w/ scrim

78. Dark Blend-70% bleached cotton that has been dyed black, 30%.Polyester needle punched, with scrim

*79. Flax Linen Blend-50%cotton/50%flax (linen, needle punched w/ scrim

80. FR Rayon-Fire resistant 100% rayon, needle punched w/light weight scrim, shrinkage 4-6%pre-soaking recommended

81. Ultra Thin Poly-(998) 100% siliconized micro denier polyester fibers

82. Pellon Fleece-(988) 100% polyester needle punched

83. Thermolam Plus-100% polyester, needle punched designed for home dec & craft projects

Matilda’s Own (4) 458 Danbury Rd A-18 New Milford, CT 06776 203-395-4720

84.Wool/Cotton Blend 60%wool40%cotton needle punched w/scrim

85.Wool/Poly 60%wool 40%polyester needle punched w/scrim

86.Wool 100% wool needle punched  w/ scrim

87. Silky Cotton 60% Silk 40% cotton needle punched w/scrim

I have marked a few w/ a red astrix that I plan to use in future projects that I found noteworthy during the testing process.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Straight cut fuse

I heard back from Jeanne she said "The trick with using straight cuts is to glide the heat of the iron across the batting tape without adding any down pressure" So I am going to try again using her advice  soon and I will let you know how I do and I will hand needle that sample as well-until then

Content Information

I heard back from Jeanne about the Heat Press Tape she promptly replied to my e-mail request and informed me the tape is 100% polyester. She also said you really have to do some testing of your own depending on what brand of iron you are using. Here is what she said-
"The fabric content is polyester. The product has a 2 second fuse with the tempature of 250 degrees. Although our irons aren't calabrated in degrees, I have found that the synthetic setting  is a good start for 100% polyester and the rest of the batting contents can go up to the wool setting. In testing, we also found that each iron company has different tempature settings for synthetic to wool. So, the metal sole irons must be tested with the product and a paticular chosen batting content. The teflon sole irons are not as hot and do not present the same problem. Some quilters are using the applique sheets on 100% polyester batting, especially the light fluffy batting that most charities are using today."
Thanks Jeanne for your quick reply and all that great information!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Have you ever needed to put two pieces of batting together to get the size you needed?

I attended a quilt show this past Friday and found a product I decided to test and include in my batting lectures. The name of the product is "Heat Press Batting together" by Jeanne Harwood Designs ( I paid $8.00 for a 10 yard roll of 1 1/2 " wide tape. There was no fiber content information on the packaging or on the web site so I have written and requested this information and I will post it as soon as I hear back from them.
 I tested the fusible cloth tape on a soy/cotton blend (50%/50%) using a straight cut, butting the edges together and fusing using the recommended iron settings. I was less than pleased with the gap that was visible where the two pieces of batting don't quite meet up. I tried this fusing process again this time I pre-ironed the batting giving it three good bursts of steam with my steam generator. My thinking here was maybe the fibers were drawing up from the heat during the fusing process and causing the gap. I did not have any more success than the first effort. I went ahead and  sandwiched this between two layers of 100% cotton muslin and quilted it using a 3/4" diagonal grid on the machine using a walking foot and 100% cotton Aurafil thread. I then serged around the edge and washed the sample and threw it in the dryer, hoping maybe the gap would somehow pull together and go away in the washing/drying process, it did not. Here is a photo of the finished sample. I have it taped to the window so you can see the light through the gap.
  Now maybe I am being too much of a perfectionist here. If you were making a quilt with darker fabrics you probably wouldn't even notice this.

I decided to do the test again this time I pre steamed the batting and then I over lapped the edges of the batting and used my rotary cutter to cut through both layers making a wavy cut. This is the method I have always used to join batting, a curved seam join, but with hand stitching. Harriet Hargrave recommends this method in her book "From Fiber to Fabric" see page 120
(I am using Pellon Flame Retardant Rayon Batting scraps in this test.) I found it much easier to get the curved edges to fit against the other with no gaps. I have them slightly apart in this picture so you can see the cut. Then I butted them together and fused the join. I sandwiched this sample the same as the first
and quilted and serged the edges and washed and dried the sample same as the first. This photo shows the results. I have my finger on the Heat Press tape so you will be able to find it as I had a hard time locating it. As you can see there are no gaps I was able to achieve a nice clean join. The laundering process did not affect the join or shift the edges apart. I have not tried to hand stitch through this product yet. It is so thin and light weight I can't imagine it would offer resistance to needling unless the bonding agent (fusible) does. Here is a close up of the tape, fusible side up.

As you can see it is very sheer almost tricot like. So I found this product to be quite a time saver when you need to quickly and effortlessly join two batting pieces and in today's economy we might find that to be a real money saver allowing us to use up every piece of batting and not waste any scraps. I would however recommend pre-steaming the area to be joined and using a curved seam.
Would I use it in a heirloom Baltimore Album quilt? Personally, no but I wouldn't piece my batting in that instance either, nor would I use any fusible product such as fusible batting. They haven't been around long enough to stand the test of time. Who know how these "glue/binding" agents will break down in time or what effect they will have on our cotton fabrics. Please note these binding agents are also present in some thermal bonded battings if you have concerns about these agents you may want to avoid them too. I know the quilters in the past were probably thrilled to have colorfast fabrics in their day but would be horrified if they saw the affects some of the mordants used to make them colorfast had on the fabrics, eating away at the fibers until there was nothing left.
For using up batting scraps in everyday utilitarian quilts I say thumbs up! Thanks Jeanne for bringing us this time saver! 
A video demo of this available on Utube at

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Pellon Legacy Line is done

Well I did finish the Pellon Legacy line on the day of my last post. There are some nice ones in this line and some are being carried in Jo Ann's now on the bolt, which is nice because we can grab them at the last minute (I NEVER do that do you??) and use a COUPON!
So nice to have the sewing studio back in order and have that off my list of things to do . I have to admit after making 83 166 (83 times 2 cause there is one washed and one un-washed sample for each brand) samples and binding each one I am slowing down. But all it will take is for some new fiber combos to hit the market and my fingers will be itching to try them.
If anyone sees any new batting on the market anywhere please let me know so I can get my hands on it!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

I am SEW ashamed to admit...

that I STILL have not gotten through the Pellon Legacy line. I am working on it at present and had to get up and take a break.(not my favorite thing to do -machine work that is, and this work is so repetitive and boring it is quite difficult to stay focused and on task!) I figured I better get upgraded here too as I have been negligent in keeping up with my blogs again too!!! I WILL finish these samples today!!
 I have been doing some more fiber research and found some interesting facts I thought I would share with you-
Soybean fiber which I thought was a fairly new discovery was in fact invented by Henry Ford in 1937  and was termed as soy “Wool". Henry Ford also made a suit and necktie from soybean fiber (see photo of him in said suit) and used this unique fiber in car upholstery. Soybean like wool was also a victim of the war and the cheaply available man-made fibers.
The new current method of making soybean fiber was invented in 1998 and was promoted in 2000. The advantages of soybean fiber being blended with cotton (50/50) is said to: Enhances the comfort, luster, moisture-permeability, quick-dry and drape properties of cotton. I do have some concerns with the color of the soy batting products showing through the fabrics of our quilt tops as it has a distinctively darker color than un-bleached cotton, with a some what yellow/orange tinge in every brand I have tested. I was really surprised to see what other raw materials fiber manufacturers are using to create new up and coming fiber products Corn (PLA)-there is already batting available made from this, Milk (casein), hemp, banana
and sea weed (called Sea Cell) who knows what other new blends the future of quilt batting will hold. Alright I better get back to work... those samples won't sew themselves!