The batting is a very important element of your quilt.
It will determine if your quilt is soft and fluffy, or thin and more crisp.
You have many choices when it comes to batting. If you want a
fluffy quilt, you want to get a very thick cotton/polyester batting.
This is usually for quilts made of squares or other simple piecing.
types of quilts are usually tied because of the difficulty of machine
quilting them. However, there are some sewing machines that do a
good job of quilting thick batting. My Janome 1600P will sew
through the thickest of batting without making a pucker on the back or
This is more of a professional sewing machine. It will only do
straight stitching or free motion. It makes the most beautiful
stitch because the hole in the plate is very small. This is a
wonderful machine if you like to do machine quilting, or at least, get
it done quickly. It is very fast.
When I purchase batting, I do not like to buy it in plastic wrap.
I find that no matter how long I leave it out of the package, or even
put it in the dryer, I can never get it to lay flat. I buy it on a
roll, like in the picture at the top of the page. That way I can
also make sure there are no seams in the batting.
Most serious quilters do not make puffy quilts. They like thinner
batting that is easier to quilt, both at home and for professional
longarm quilters. You can see the quilting designs much better
with thinner batting. Thick batting hides quilting stitches.
Many quilters like Warm and Natural batting. It is a good product,
similar to using a wool blanket. However, I find it too stiff.
I like a softer quilt.
The polyester in batting gives it strength, and the cotton gives it
warmth. Most batting is sold with a mixture of both fibers, with a
little more cotton than polyester.
You can put a blanket between your quilt top and backing. However,
be careful of inexpensive batting, especially if it is not bonded.
You may find that it "beards" on you. The fibers of the batting
will come up to the top of your quilt, between the threads of your quilt
fabric. This is also a problem with using inexpensive fabric with
a low thread count.
The last thing you need to remember is to read the label on your
batting. It will tell you how close you need to make your stitches
if you are machine quilting, or how close to make your ties. Most
quilts need to be secured around every 4 inches. One of the
advantages of Warm and Natural binding is that it is more like 6 inches.
You can tie a quilt with anything that you can get through the layers,
from embroidery floss to thread. I made one quilt that my husband
tied for me using a pair of pliers to pull through the heavy
Keep all of your leftover pieces of batting. You can use them in
small projects, and as stuffing for craft projects.
As a side note, you can use a rubber band and place your batting around
a swiffer pad to dust, or wet mop, depending on the batting.