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Thread: What's a good price to pay for backing?

  1. #1
    Member 2 Much Fabric's Avatar
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    What's a good price to pay for quilt backing?

    Are they all about the same, or are there some brands that are better than others?

    Does it really make a difference? (You'll probably never reverse a quilt, anyway.)

  2. #2
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    I had a tendency to go "cheap" on the back so that I could get the good stuff for the front. But I started thinking that when it is washed maybe the back will wear out quicker so I feel I should get the good stuff for both.

  3. #3
    Power Poster Mousie's Avatar
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    I tend to not be as fussy about how "pretty", the backing is, but I do want it to hold up, as well as the front.
    I actually, bought quite a bit of muslin, not too long ago, to use for backings on some of my smaller stuff. Don't know If I will use as a backing for a quilt that goes on a bed though. I like some color to those.
    If I used it on the front, I might.
    I tend to be a bargain shopper, but starting to 'up', what I will pay for fabrics, bc I am noticing so many, 'cheap', made fabrics. It's very disappointing to spy a pretty one, only to get a closer look and see all those grainy lines, and then run you hand under the single layer, and see your fingers through it :roll:

  4. #4
    Lisa T's Avatar
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    I have been using vintage sheets for the backs of my quilts lately. I don't care so much for the newer sheets. They are either cheaply made or so thickly woven that the needle makes a "puck" sound when it goes through. But the older sheets, as long as they are in good shape, are so soft and they last forever. I have been able to find a lot of cute ones for only $4 or $5 at Goodwill.

    I have used newer flannel sheets also and they work really well (so soft!), but once again, the cheap ones are no good so unless you get them on clearance or at a thrift store, you really don't save much.

    The other thing I do is look at the lqs in the sale room- here it's 40% off- and often I can get enough for a back. That way I know it's not going to unravel or tear easily. Cheaply made fabric is so prevalent now. GRR!! If a quilt is going to be a "special" one, with a lot of time or money in it, then I will use one of the fabrics that I used on the front, cost be darned!

    I would guess I spend about $40 on a back, unless I find a sheet that works at Goodwill, then it's only $4 or $5. (Been doing more of that lately!)

  5. #5
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    I pay just as much attention to the back of my quilts as I do to the front. Just because something doesn't show at first glance is no reason to scrimp on it. I would call a "good price" the best you can afford for a fabric you believe adds to the overall beauty and quality of the quilt you are making at the time.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Shelley's Avatar
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    Here's MY rules and why I use them (remember, there are NO quilt police!)

    1) No percale sheets. Why? They are too tightly woven, the threads break instead of parting when the needle goes through. Yea, you can find some that don't, but for me, life's just too darn short and I want my quilts to last.

    2) Flannel sheets are fine, as long as I can load with the stretch lengthwise on the frame and have the top going the right direction for the chosen design. Why? It allows for the stretch to be consistent (while I try to minimize the stretch). Puckers are just to easy to happen if the stretchy direction is horizontal to the bars.

    3) No batiks, UNLESS it is the 108" wide specifically made for machine quilting. Sewbatik.com carries it. See rule number 1. Batiks are usually a very tight weave. It doesn't seem to matter as much on the tops, but it can become a hugh mess on the back.

    For my own quilts, I look for busy fabrics so that I don't have to worry too much about what happens on the back. I really do love the SewBatik fabrics for the big quilts, and for the small ones I use Quilt Shop quality fabrics on the 40-50% off racks. As long as it'll look ok, it works for me.

  7. #7
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I use quilt shop quality fabrics that I happen to have bought on sale for the backs of my quilts. I want the back to look good and be as durable as the front with the same amount of shrinkage etc. I have been very fortunate to have been able to purchase some large pieces of very good fabrics from $1 to $3 per yard. Whenever I can catch a sale like that, I stock up and buy the 6-12 yard pieces in colors I use most.
    My backs may not necessarily "match" my tops but I have been able to geth them to "go" well with them.

  8. #8
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    On the back of my last quilt, I found some 108" fabric at JoAnn's for $8 or $9 a yard. I think, I bought 2 1/2 yards of it for a queen quilt. And I had quite a bit left over for my scrap pile.

  9. #9
    Super Member LucyInTheSky's Avatar
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    I'll stock up on bargain fabric that I'll use for backing. About a year (more..?) ago Quilt in a Day had a sale where you bought 10 yards for $25 in a certain color way. So I bought a bunch of those, and the pretty ones go onto quilt tops and the not-as-pretty ones get pieced to become backs.

    It's difficult to pay $25-30 for backing fabric when I could spend that for another quilt top

  10. #10
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    As much as possible, I use pieces left over from making the top. That includes extra blocks that I didn't use on the top. I want the back to be the same quality as the top, and I prefer that it use the same fabrics. Most of my quilts are scrappy, so if I have a large piece that I would like to have on the back I will incorporate some of it on the top too.

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