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Thread: question about feather quilts

  1. #26
    Super Member quilterella's Avatar
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    If you have the patience to collect enough downfeathers (the really small ones), you measure the size of your bed: king, queen, etc. Add 6ins, make a large pillowcase, leaving approx 12in on oneside to stuff the feathers. After you have it stuffed, stitch your open area closed. The hard part is whether or not you want to hand quilt this to stablize it. You are making a duvet basically.

  2. #27
    Super Member Deborah12687's Avatar
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    My mother and grandmother always made feather pillows and they used pillow ticking. It is actually good for making any pillows as it is a heavyer fabric. You only use the down feathers not the wing feathers. I couldn't sleep on feather pillows as I would get ear aches.

  3. #28

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    oh how this takes me home to england my parants have gone but this memery willstay for ever
    thank you

  4. #29
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    Oh, the sweet memories of sleeping in my grandmothers featherbed (chicken feathers). Thanks for bringing those memories back.

  5. #30
    Super Member Edie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amma
    Don't they just use the smaller feathers for "down"?
    Maybe someone would be interested in purchasing the larger feathers? I bet you could sell them on ebay to someone :D:D:D
    My husband and I have had down blankets for years. Down is the soft feathers under the coarser feathers. You don't want to use the coarser outer feathers for a down quilt. The nice thing about a down quilt is that they keep you warm in the winter and cool (don't ask, I don't know why either) in the summer. You can check at garage/rummage sales and find some old ones, and have them redone in new ticking. I make duvets out of two twin sheets for the case on the blanket, sew on three large snaps and VOILA! just saved about $75.00! I get four twin flat sheets and I have enough duvets for one on and one in the wash! We each have our own feather blanket (in a double bed) and cocoon ourselves! If it were me, I would make channels, stuff the channels and close up the blanket. I would then turn the quilt and make "boxes'. I have learned over the years that the boxed blanket keeps the down in place and they don't wander either to the top or to the bottom. Channeling, alone, would cause that problem. You can wash the blankets, dry them in the dryer. It takes quite a while. You can't really hang them out, because they are settled and will take a million years to dry. You can wash down pillows the same way. We generally get our federbetten from Germany.
    They have the best! We think! Edie

  6. #31
    Power Poster Lacelady's Avatar
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    I have a featherbed, bought from QVC. They state that they wash the feathers up to 15 times to get them really clean, whereas the industry standard is 4 times.

  7. #32
    Super Member MaryKatherine's Avatar
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    A duvet IS eseentially a quilt.

  8. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by B. Louise
    I can't resist posting these dimensions for a feather bed: "It was nine feet high and six feet wide, soft as a downy chick
    It was made from the feathers of forty 'leven geese, took a whole bolt of cloth for the tick
    It'd hold eight kids 'n' four hound dogs and a piggy we stole from the shed
    Didn't get much sleep but we had a lot of fun on Grandma's feather bed."
    Thank you, John Denver.
    I love that song, too.

  9. #34
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    For the larger feathers, there is definitely a market for them in the crafting world, especially among the historical re-enacting community.

    We have friends who are trying to raise the 'pretty' chickens, ducks & geese of various varieties for that specific purpose. For them the eggs are just a bonus.

  10. #35
    Super Member Moonpi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrsjdt
    we have an artist in our area who paints wildlife scenes on turkey feathers...just amazing. Maybe the same on goose feathers?
    I used to use goose wing feathers for faux finishes, like doing marble veining. I have seen spiderweb "brooms" made of turkey wing feathers.

  11. #36
    Super Member Moonpi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrsjdt
    we have an artist in our area who paints wildlife scenes on turkey feathers...just amazing. Maybe the same on goose feathers?
    I used to use goose wing feathers for faux finishes, like doing marble veining. I have seen spiderweb "brooms" made of turkey wing feathers.

  12. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by barbbrad
    My husband and I own a outfitting business and bring hunters up from the states to hunt geese and ducks, would I be able to use the feathers that we get to make a quilt and how would I do that? :)
    We have a feather blanket/quilt that we bought in Germany. It is actually too warm for us here in SC. but was great when we were still in Mi.

  13. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by B. Louise
    I can't resist posting these dimensions for a feather bed: "It was nine feet high and six feet wide, soft as a downy chick
    It was made from the feathers of forty 'leven geese, took a whole bolt of cloth for the tick
    It'd hold eight kids 'n' four hound dogs and a piggy we stole from the shed
    Didn't get much sleep but we had a lot of fun on Grandma's feather bed."
    Thank you, John Denver.
    I loved that song!

  14. #39
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    The "feathers" aren't used...the "down" from the chest and belly areas are used. They are small and softer.My mom made all her feather pillows and feather beds for 5 beds, I don't ever remember any mites, bugs or other critters in the feathers she used.

  15. #40
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    Brings back memories when I was little and would go the farm, they had the feather beds and I was always told not to get on it, I would mess it up, but I was a little girl and you know what I did. It was so cozy. Butttt, if you allergies they are not the best thing for you, pillow or what ever. Little mites or what ever the dr. called them love the feathers.

  16. #41
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    The feather beds we had when I was a kid were covered in blue-striped ticking, which was kinda like canvas.
    My mother took the last one apart to make pillows for each one in the family, including spouses.
    Years later I took the two for my husband and myself, and made them into one big pillow for our only son when he was about ten years old.
    He loved that pillow and it went with him into his marriage. His wife was very tolerant for a lot of years, but the time finally came...

  17. #42
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    My grandfather had a mattress factory when I was young. He had a big machine he put the cotton or feathers in and it ran and I guess sterlized them. Then he sewed a ticking out of striped heavy ticking and then hand sewed with heavy yellow thread around the edge. People brought their old mattresses in to be refreshed. He added new to their old and made a new cover. He had an old Sewing commerical machine he sewed the ticking on. He did all this while totally blind. Amazing.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by amma
    Don't they just use the smaller feathers for "down"?
    Maybe someone would be interested in purchasing the larger feathers? I bet you could sell them on ebay to someone :D:D:D
    Have you ever heard of stripping feathers? My mom told us about doing that. The result would be much like down. Featherbeds and pillows were made. I slept between featherbeds many times. I didn't like them but you were definitely warm. Mom had several of DGM featherbeds,. We used them and as each of us married, they were used to make us pillows. Even each of the DGC received one when they were born.

  19. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by clem55
    I think the insides were heavy , like pillow ticking, and grandma just kept adding feathers until it was thick enough. After the ticking was fullo, it was stitched closed and then a duvet was put over it. That way she could take the duvet off and wash. The feather bed itself was just aired oiut and shook real good each time it was used. I d0on't remember that it was tied anyplace, because we use to shake the heck out of it to get it fluffy all over.
    Thought I was the only one who remembered that. LOL Don't remember that they were tied either. I'm certain that they were not, but I could be wrong. (senior moment?)

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by msariano
    I once bought 2 feather pillows. They were very nice but once in a while, a feather would poke out and stab you in the cheek. I guess you have to cut the hard part of the "vein" of the feather up high, else it will poke through the fabric.
    What an interesting idea. I'd like to know if you do follow-up making feather quilts--I bet your process is a good story.!
    That's where the stripping comes in. Everything is stripped off the vein. Believe me, it takes a lot of feathers and it isn'e something you will make in a short time.

  21. #46
    Super Member JoanneS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barbbrad
    My husband and I own a outfitting business and bring hunters up from the states to hunt geese and ducks, would I be able to use the feathers that we get to make a quilt and how would I do that? :)
    I made jackets and a sleeping bag with feathers from FrostLine kits many years ago. You have to have very tightly woven cloth to hold the feathers in - the kits used a very tightly woven nylon.

    I have down comforters from Germany. They are made of VERY tightly woven cloth, too. The down is in compartments about 6 inches squares, so it doesn't bunch up at the end of the comforter. I made duvet covers for them from sheets, so that I have to wash them less often. I air them outside on the clothesline occasionally. They can be washed and dried in machines one at a time - using Orvus as you would for quilts. Put a couple old tennis shoes in the drier with it to help fluff it.

    Thus, I wouldn't recommend making quilts using feathers unless you find fabric that is much more tightly woven that the cotton we use for quilts. Feathers have a way of poking their way OUT - even out of my 'fetterbetten'!

  22. #47
    Super Member quilt3311's Avatar
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    We had feather beds and feather quilts growing up. No heat in the upstairs of the farm house. The Feather beds were made with ticking and then stuffed with feathers. Feather quilts were done by using a tightly woven cotton fabric, tunnels were stitched and each tunnel was stuffed with feathers. Flannel sheets and a heavy wool quilt topped everything and we were kept warm and snug, even when it was below 0 and the wind was howling outside. During blizzards the snow would sift in around the windows as there were no storm windows in the upstairs.

  23. #48
    Senior Member GloBug's Avatar
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    You can make feather ticks. It is a tubelur tipe quilt, after the caseing is made one end of the tubes are left open for stuffing.These are very warm,and perfect for a hunting lodge.covering a tick with a washable cover is a good idea as the feathers do not wash well.
    Gloria :thumbup: :thumbup:

  24. #49
    Super Member cjaye44's Avatar
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    My daughter has a feather mattress, feather pillows and a down comforter on her bed. She likes to burrow. When I visit her I use her bed since she stays up much later than I do..I have to throw the pillows and the comforter to one side...I feel like I'm being smothered.

  25. #50
    Super Member skydiver70's Avatar
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    Are you talking about feather beds? I remember those when I was growing up. Mother made them from duck feathers/down. She used what they call pillow/feather ticking as the outside. The feathers have to be washed and air dried to sanitize them. She would make it similar to a pillow case except it would be the size of the bed you were making it for. She would sew all the way around, leaving an opening large enough to put in the feathers. Then when it was the firmness you desired, you would sew the opening closed. They still sell the ticking, but I don't know if they sell the really wide ticking anymore. I re-covered one of Mama's feather pillows and she used it at the nursing home. She never did like any other pillow. I bought the ticking at Wal-Mart.

    We would have these on our beds in the winter time especially, underneath the bottom sheet (of course we didn't have fitted sheets back then). (Oh my am I that old.....Yeh!!!)

    I found one for a twin bed at Mama's home when I was cleaning up recently. Of course it is no longer usable since it was made years ago and has been upstairs so long.

    They were so soft and warm to sleep on in the winter.

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