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Thread: Does Batting Revert to Its Original Size when Washed?

  1. #1
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    First time quilting. I am starting to quilt the first of six quilts that need to be finished by May. While laying out the batting for the first one, it was too short and yet as I smoothed it out over the backing, it began to stretch out and now it is long enough to provide the extra that is needed beyond the quilt top. It is still over 2 inches shorter than the package size states. I didn't pull on it, just smoothed it. Does batting return to its original size when it is washed as part of the quilt? This batting is JoAnn 100 % Premium Polyester Soft N Crafty Traditional Batting which was needlepunched. The package says nothing about shrinking (polyester doesn't right?) It does say it is washable. I would really appreciate this information because I don't want to ruin all of the quilt tops I have worked so hard on for months. They are for my grand and great-grand children. The next quilt top will be getting Warm and Natural. I bought queen size to make sure it would be big enough for a 75x60 inch quilt. Thank you for your help. I did use search and didn't find any posts pertaining to my question.

  2. #2
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    Polyester batting won't shrink. Smoothing it out as you did does not mean it will shrink back to what it was unsmoothed.

  3. #3
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    I agree with Prism, it shouldn't be a problem, unless you've smoothed it out to the point that it's less thick in some areas than in others, and even that probably won't matter to a child.

  4. #4
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    I agree with prism & dunster. I've stretched poly battint when it was an inch or so short without a problem. Once it's quilted the quilting stitches will hold it in place without a problem. Like dunster said, just be sure you didn't get it too thin in one place.

  5. #5
    Super Member Vanuatu Jill's Avatar
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    I have always used polyester batting (mostly from Joann's) on quilts while living overseas in the tropics-never had problems with it shrinking or ruining the quilts when washed. I have also had to "smooth", not stretch, on occasion when trying to squeeze every inch out of it (had no place to buy it there) and found no problems. I'm sure your quilts will turn out fine and your lucky GK's and GGK's will love them!! Lets see pics of what you have done!!!! (please)
    I might add, since I have been back in the U.S., I have used Warm and Natural and although I love the feel and "evenness" of it, it is a bit hard to hand-quilt, which is what I usually do.

  6. #6
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    Thank you all for your replys. :) I feel much better now and am looking forward to getting started. I will post pics after I have quilted each one. I want to add some fancy stitching designs in some of the tops before quilting.

  7. #7
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    Poly batting because its not knit or woven will not revert back. The fibers are not truly secured to stay in the original spot. They will stay where you put them , the quilting is to prevent any felting of the fibers or bunching in the wash. The best poly battings have long fibers. Short fibers can bunch up a bit, thats why the manufacture puts a recommended quilting distance.

  8. #8
    linz83's Avatar
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    Having never used poly batting I have a question...

    If you use unshrinkable batting, will your cotton quilt top still shrink?
    how does that work? ? ?

  9. #9
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by linz83
    Having never used poly batting I have a question...

    If you use unshrinkable batting, will your cotton quilt top still shrink?
    how does that work? ? ?
    It depends on the fabric and if you pre-shrunk. Using a poly batting and non- prewashed fabric can give a little more lift to those crinkles that come from the fabric shrinking. It can alos be a warmer quilt than a cotton batting. The more air trapped in fibers the warmer the quilt.
    Some cottons shrink very little , batiks do not typically shrink as hot water has been used in the process. I've nver seen a flannel that did not shrink.
    Some quilt makers want the quilt to stay as flat as the day it comes off the machine, and take great care to preshrink everything. For the most crinkle use a cotton batting and do not pre-shrink it. The packages will indicate how much shrinkage the expect. Now if the fabric manufactures would do the same!

  10. #10
    linz83's Avatar
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    Ok so your saying If I do not pre shrink my cottons and use poly batting, it would just make my quilt poofyier- (i know its wrong but somehow it looks right ) ??
    could it start to tear and pull at cottons?
    I have only ever used warm and natural batting but I have seen poly batting is much cheaper.
    also, since your sooo smart, . . .

    if i have a regular lqs quilt top and put the 100% cotton flanel from joanns for backing, would it be lopsided? or would back shrink alot more? could it end badly?

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