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Thread: The Cotton Theory Technique

  1. #1
    Junior Member kittykatz2001's Avatar
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    Hi all, I am scheduled to take a Cotton Theory class on Sat. 22nd. I have been fascinated with this technique ever since I saw their booth at the Houston Quilt Market 2 years ago. What are your opinions, tips, etc. about it. I am really looking forward to the class.

  2. #2
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    I've never tried it but have watched the videos on QuitersTV several times. Do they end up feeling stiff? I've never seen one in person.

  3. #3
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    I started one of these several years ago at a class. I am almost done. It is in my UFO's, that I plan to work on this year. I used a lot of my scraps.

  4. #4
    Senior Member lindagor's Avatar
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    I got Cotton Theory Book 1 and 2 for Christmas and I made a table runner. I wasn't thrilled with the result, but I am willing to try again.

  5. #5
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    I enjoyed my class. Yes, the final product is a little stiff if you quilt as closely as she says, but it's quilt as you go and it's reversible. Those two things help me put up with the stiffness. Also, since the quilting is a major reason the item is stiff, later on you can quilt your project less densely and it won't be so stiff.

  6. #6
    Super Member sewingladydi's Avatar
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    I prefer quilt as you go, but I haven't done the Cotton Theory method. I saw it demonstrated on a Sewing with Nancy program and it just seemed too involved to me

  7. #7
    Super Member sewingsuz's Avatar
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    All that i can tell you about Cotton, is it is the coolist thing to wear in Arizona.

  8. #8
    Junior Member Newby0709's Avatar
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    I made Attic Windows with a Cotton Theory pattern. I'm not good with colors but I gave it a try.
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-28801-1.htm

  9. #9
    Junior Member kittykatz2001's Avatar
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    I have felt of a table mat after it was made in the booth in Houston but so many people had handled it that it felt heavy but soft. I will find out Sat. in class.

  10. #10
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    have fun! relax, and enjoy learning the process :thumbup:

  11. #11
    Member sew_it_up's Avatar
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    I bought a book a couple of years ago. I made 2 pot holders back then. I found the book again in 2009. My children all received "kitchen stuff" for Christmas 2009. I made more of these potholders plus a variety of others. The Cotton Theory potholders were much more difficult and time consuming than the others.

    I tried to post some photos but was unable to load them.

  12. #12
    Junior Member kittykatz2001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckcowl
    have fun! relax, and enjoy learning the process :thumbup:
    That's what I plan to do. I think I will like it. I tend to like tedious. Am I nuts or what?

  13. #13
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    too time consuming, wastes fabric and leaves all those seams out in the open....won't hold up to wear and washing...those seams are just too vulnerable.

  14. #14
    Super Member gmaybee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kittykatz2001
    Hi all, I am scheduled to take a Cotton Theory class on Sat. 22nd. I have been fascinated with this technique ever since I saw their booth at the Houston Quilt Market 2 years ago. What are your opinions, tips, etc. about it. I am really looking forward to the class.
    I have taken several classes with Betty and love the technique. I teach at our LQS and this is one of the classes I teach. I would love to go to Wisconsin and take a retreat there with Betty. Check out her site (Quilt yard) and all the pictures of her place. I have a lot of her books.

  15. #15
    Senior Member AnnieF's Avatar
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    I took a cotton theory class and did not enjoy it at all...apparently my old sewing machine was not up to the challenge of sewing all of those layers together. Never tried it again when I purchased a new machine.

  16. #16
    Senior Member MomtoBostonTerriers's Avatar
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    kittykatz2001,

    I love Cotton Theory. I am a new quilter, so I figure if I can make a quilt with Cotton Theory, anyone can. It does indeed take a lot of time to cut out the front and backing pieces of each quilt, and the quilting takes a while, but when all the pieces are completed, the quilt is finished! No sending it off to a long arm quilter, no wrestling it all over the room to get it quilted.

    I've seen quilts made by expert quilters at Cotton Theory Camp, and they are to die for -- just like going to the Houston Quilt Show and being in awe of those quilts. I'm not in that league, but it is inspiring to know that Cotton Theory quilts can be very complicated and beautiful, but are also something that newbies like me can handle.

    I have found that the quilts are NOT stiff and anyone who produces a stiff quilt is not doing the Cotton Theory seams correctly. The seams are not "open," but are beautifully finished with your choice of fancy stitches.

    I hope you enjoy your class. As with anything in quilting, start with a small project and practice until you get the hang of it.

    Here are a few of my beginner Cotton Theory products.

    Close up of one of the scrappy blocks.
    Name:  Attachment-163518.jpe
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    Placemats -- made many sets of placemats for Christmas gifts.
    Name:  Attachment-163563.jpe
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    I made this from a kit, but I adapted it so I could use the Cotton Theory technique.
    Name:  Attachment-163565.jpe
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    A scrappy quilt that I designed for a University of Florida friend.
    Name:  Attachment-163566.jpe
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Size:  72.6 KB
    Attached Images Attached Images

  17. #17
    Junior Member kittykatz2001's Avatar
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    [quote=MomtoBostonTerriers]kittykatz2001,

    I love Cotton Theory. I am a new quilter, so I figure if I can make a quilt with Cotton Theory, anyone can.

    Ohh, so glad to hear some positive things. I guess this is one of those techniques that you either love it or hate it. That seems to be the way PP is. Which is another thing I would like to learn. Even tho it's been 5 years since I've started this I still feel like a beginning quilter. I had 2 1/2 years during that time that I was not able to quilt.

    Am healthy now so anxious to get back to it. I am starting with my scraps, now a class and have, like any other quilter, quite a few that need finishing. Seems like a good start for a new year to me. If I can only stay healthy.

    Everything I have made have been given away or are wip. Except for one that I cannot find a photo of right now.

  18. #18
    Super Member quiltinghere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MomtoBostonTerriers
    kittykatz2001, I love Cotton Theory. I have found that the **quilts are NOT stiff** and anyone who produces a stiff quilt is not doing the Cotton Theory seams correctly. The **seams are not "open," **but are beautifully finished with your choice of fancy stitches.
    I agree with you. You're quilts are BEAUTIFUL.

    My first quilt was a Queen Cotton Theory quilt Log Cabin using just a zig-zag stitch. I've been using it for quite a few years and it's as soft and warm as can be! I don't know how it could be considered a waste of fabric. All strips are cut ahead of time...where's the waste?

    I loved the fact that the quilt was being finished as I sewed. Hmmm maybe I should make another one...then I'd have 2 completed quilts :)

  19. #19
    Junior Member kittykatz2001's Avatar
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    [quote=MomtoBostonTerriers]kittykatz2001,

    I love Cotton Theory. I am a new quilter, so I figure if I can make a quilt with Cotton Theory, anyone can.

    The finished quilt I saw at their booth in Houston was a Log Cabin and I thought it was the most beautiful thing..........I went back to get a quilt kit, about 3 hours later and yep, you guessed it, they were sold out!! Oh well, I like picking out my own fabrics anyway. Your quilts are just gorgeous!! I am hoping I like this technique. I want a Log Cabin..............

  20. #20
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    I tried it and HATED it...it is probably the only project that I did not finish AND threw away in about 20 years of quilting...my opinion? RUN the other way (but again, thta is only my opinion, experience)

    Laurie

  21. #21
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    There was a 'cotton theory' instructor posting on this site a while back and she posted gorgeous pictures of placemats and quilts.
    I made a few placemats and like anything new it was tedious to learn the process. But I did like the finished placemats.
    Like anything else'stiff' has different meanings to different people. I like to QAYG and my fam all says they are too stiff! They want every quilt limp and drappy! :roll:
    Please post pics of your class project when you get finished, it may change the mind of some people!

  22. #22
    JoyG's Avatar
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    I love cotton theory quilting. It is very easy to do and you get to use alot of those decorative stitches on your machine that you never have tried. Also you will learn to "wobble" stitch and after that you will catch yourself wobbling all the time. Seriously, cotton theory makes beautiful quilts, wallhangings, placemats, etc. and contrary to popular belief they are not stiff. Hope you enjoy your class.

    Front of Mule Quilt
    Name:  Attachment-139770.jpe
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Size:  83.9 KB

    Back of Mule Quilt
    Name:  Attachment-139771.jpe
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Size:  93.8 KB

  23. #23
    Super Member quiltinghere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoyG
    Also you will learn to "wobble" stitch and after that you will catch yourself wobbling all the time.
    Ok :) I'll ask -

    What's a wobble stitch?

  24. #24
    Senior Member krabadan's Avatar
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    i've made 5 bed-sized quilts -- two queen -- using this method and really like it. I've taken the liberty of spacing the channel quilting wider and use a decorative stitch. It is great not having to deal with the bulk of the quilt until the very end.

  25. #25
    JoyG's Avatar
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    Me too! Makes the possibility of actually quilting your quilt yourself without having to spend the money on a longarm machine. The pictures below are an example of taking a traditional block and assembling it the Cotton Theory way to show that you can take any block and turn it into a Cotton Theory Quilt. Our quilt guild always has a mystery quilt pattern and I finished mine using Cotton Theory to quilt.

    Front of Guild Mystery Quilt
    Name:  Attachment-117867.jpe
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    Back of Guild Mystery Quilt
    Name:  Attachment-117869.jpe
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