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Thread: Quilts from wool -- REALLY??

  1. #1
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    Can you really make quilts from wool fabric? This might help ease my guilty conscience! Years ago (like 25-30 years) I bought really nice wool to make suits for myself. Well, the suits never got made, I don't need them anymore, and the fabric sits in my cedar chest.

    I did a search on this site on "wool", and it looks like I should wash and dry the wool, and then just quilt away. Is that correct? Use whatever batting and whatever backing?

    I didn't find any pictures of wool quilts in my search. Can someone post one? I have at least 5 fabrics, which don't really coordinate (one brown, one green, one blue, etc), and I can't see a finished quilt in my mind's eye.

    What are the attributes of a quilt made with wool. I'm thinking it would be a lap-size, used for warmth while watching TV, vs. a quilt used on a bed.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    I don't know about wool quilts. I have seen pictures, but haven't made one and don't know anyone who makes them. I bet they would be warm, though. You'd have to use wool batting, too, probably.

    Hope someone can answer your question. Good luck!!

  3. #3
    Super Member raptureready's Avatar
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    Since wool has a tendency to be heavy quilts out of it are usually made in the same manner as a denim quilt---in other words, very simple blocks such as squares or rectangles sewn together. They can be quilted but are usually tied. Since wool is very warm you won't need much batting so if you use any at all, it should be very thin. Wool is usually more loosely woven than cotton so you might want to take a bit larger seam--up to 1/2" and make sure that your stitch is just a little smaller than usual. A lot of times she used an old sheet blanket or flannel sheet for the batting.
    At least that's what Mom always did. She made them bed size though. Old drafty farm house in central Illinois almost required them to survive. LOL

  4. #4
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Yes, quilts can be made out of wool. But, remove it from your cedar chest! Cedar Chests will stain fabrics and quilts over time.

  5. #5
    Super Member quiltwoman's Avatar
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    Our local fair had the most beautiful red/gray WOOL quilt submitted by a Mennonite church. It won an award. I"m sorry I don't have a picture of it. It was really beautiful.

  6. #6
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    I have seen quilts made out of wool. I personally don't use it, I am allergic but they are nice and warm :-)

  7. #7
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    I saw a quilt made of wool like men's suiting interspersed with home decorating fabrics such as silk, suede and velvet. There were decorative stitched through the blocks. It was backed with berber fleece. It was gorgeous. Someone gave me a whole lot of approx. 6" square wool samples of men's clothing and I got some decorator fabric and now trying to come up with a design. I don't want to cut the squares any smaller. It is all laid out on the dining room table right now. Any suggestions are appreciated.

  8. #8
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    there is an older boom (1970's) believe the title is The Wool Quilt. Is available on Amazon or Ebay. Gives all kinds of info about using wool.
    Many many many years ago my aunts made wool lap robes as the cars were unheaqted. They were just squares.
    This has been discussed here before and most agree that very thin batting should be used if wool is alwo on the back. However, I would tend to use another fabric that simulates wool but is thinner. And yes, they make wonderful warm quilts. Just have to respect the nature of the fabric such as fraying etc and perhaps make larger seams.

  9. #9
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    My grandmother made wool quilts for men's suiting fabric samples that she was given, and they stayed on our beds for years. I still have one. I don't use it, but it is packed safely away. The wool is in good shape, but the flannel backing needs to be replaced. It's a technique I'd like to try.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Liz aka Helen's Avatar
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    How about using is as the backing for a lap quilt or as the batting. My DM GM had a quilt that was made that way - wool as the batting. Its very heavy but very warm and no itchy stuff.

  11. #11
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    I think I have one...got it at an auction. It's super heavy, but really warm.

    I'll go take a picture of it for you.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  12. #12
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    oh my goodness there are TONS of wonderful wool quilts!!!
    visit Sue Spargo's web site...visit primative gatherings; visit the Cotton Patch Quilt Shoppe in East Tawas, Michigan, she has lots of BOM's to look at for inspiration...over the weekend i will get mine out and take a picture, i guess i need to do that anyway..
    and yes, wash your wool in hot water with a small amount of detergent...i usually reset, agitate it for a good 20 minutes and make sure the water is HOT. then into a hot dryer...when it comes out it is ready for all kinds of wool projects -- i love working with wool!

  13. #13
    Member llcox's Avatar
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    Google "penny rugs" There are lots of beautiful ideas.

  14. #14
    Senior Member sandilee's Avatar
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    I have 2 pure wool quilts that DH's grandmother made, probably back in the late 1930's-40's. I use to use them but have them packed away.
    They are 9 patch and tied.

    thanks for the infor on the cedar chest. Thats where they are stored. Better check to make sure they're o.k.

  15. #15
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    Wool sold now for applique and quilting is very expensive. Don't get rid of any 100% wool skirts, blazers, or slacks. It will be bought up quick on ebay or here.

  16. #16
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    You can get a great deal on wool clothing at your local Good Will or Thrift Store....at least in the South. We don't wear a lot of wool any more...until this cold winter LOL!! We tend to have lots of the basic colors in skirts, blazers and men's suits. A lot of fabric for the price!!

  17. #17
    Super Member sewingsuz's Avatar
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    Wools and velvets is what the crazy quilts use to be mad of I think.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Highmtn's Avatar
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    Although this thread is old, maybe someone will see this.

    I have had a wool quilt in the back of my mind for about 10 years. My mom had started cutting out wool squares many moons ago. She passed in 1999, and someone took the bag from their house. I am the only quilter in the famil and I was pretty blue that that happened. I sulked over it for a long time. But but but.... last weekend our local Goodwills ran a sale that anything you could fit into their giant bags you could get for 50% off. The light came on and I hit two different Goodwills. I nabbed 14 gorgeous old (but very clean) wool suit coats in various colors. All for under $40. They are sooo heavy...lol

    I'm going to ck out the links provided, and see what I can do. To begin with I have to disassemble the jackets, and the added perk is ALL the gorgeous buttons on the suits. I wonder if I can make the double breasted lapels into some sort of crazy suit like prairie points....lol
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  19. #19
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    I did a wool wallhanging about 50 X 50 years ago. It was from coat remnants that my aunt gave me. They were in bright blue, magenta, green and black tweed. Since the colours suggested an Amish look I did the large square in a square pattern. It still remains one of my favourites. I used 1/2 inch seams that I pressed open and I hand quilted it with larger stitches. It has been hanging as a piece of art for years and I vacuum it for cleaning. Since the colours are darker and it is wool I will not chance washing it.

  20. #20
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Oooh, I have about 5 wool quilts on my to-do list! I live near a wool mill, so getting remnants is easy. I have quite a stash of various weights of wool, from the heavy felt-like wool to lightweight suiting. I plan to use the heavy wool to piece a simple backing for a denim quilt I made for my DH to take hunting. He needs warm and heavy for that!

  21. #21
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    We had wool quilts on our beds when I was growing up. The water would freeze, the pipes would burst, but we were always warm as toast until we had to get out of bed. No one left the heat on at night. It wasn't needed because we were warm in bed under the wool quilts.When we got up we put on wool clothes. Our home was heated with 2 floor furnaces and only the areas close to the furnaces stayed warm. If the economy gets worse lots of us may have to go back to no heat at night, wool quilts, wool clothes, keeping our houses about 55 degrees to cut back on expenses. Life used to be a lot cheaper in the 30's and 40's. Also no AC in the summer. Sounds terrible to me now.
    Last edited by TanyaL; 03-05-2012 at 10:21 PM.

  22. #22
    Senior Member coldquilter's Avatar
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    I would love to make a quilt out of wool. I think it's so great for warmth and durability. Have fun and just do some nine patch or something easy.
    Michelle

  23. #23
    Super Member raedar63's Avatar
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    I went to a quilt show sunday and I would say 40 percent of the entrys were wool. The primative wool quilts have been huge at the last few shows I have went to. The penny rugs and primative wall hangings are also very popular.

  24. #24
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quilt1950 View Post
    Can you really make quilts from wool fabric? This might help ease my guilty conscience! Years ago (like 25-30 years) I bought really nice wool to make suits for myself. Well, the suits never got made, I don't need them anymore, and the fabric sits in my cedar chest.

    I did a search on this site on "wool", and it looks like I should wash and dry the wool, and then just quilt away. Is that correct? Use whatever batting and whatever backing?

    I didn't find any pictures of wool quilts in my search. Can someone post one? I have at least 5 fabrics, which don't really coordinate (one brown, one green, one blue, etc), and I can't see a finished quilt in my mind's eye.

    What are the attributes of a quilt made with wool. I'm thinking it would be a lap-size, used for warmth while watching TV, vs. a quilt used on a bed.

    Thanks!
    Five different quilts leads to a "turning twenty" or 10 minute block or a D9P, or just as plain 9 patch.
    Perhaps purchase one more close to solid colored piece and make a snowball block, the the corner patches pulling the pieces together.

    If you hand wash, be very careful not to cause the fabric to felt.

    Or quilt away then take finished quilt to a dry cleaners

    Find a pattern that makes you happy. The wool doesn't care how you put it together.
    Bad Spellers of the World
    U N T I E

  25. #25
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    At one time I had a wool quilt my grandparents had used on their bed. It was wool, over wool, over wool. I have no idea how old it was but where it was worn one could see inside and there were 2 quilts inside. When it began to be worn out they just added another top. It was tied with wool yarn. AND VERY heavy Sorry I don't have a picture.
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