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Thread: Which wadding?

  1. #1

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    My wife has just taken up quilting, making lap quilts, but she has yet to find a wadding available in the UK which she likes. Can anyone advise her on what's best for machine quilting, that doesn't require pre-washing and that doesn't produce tiny balls of wadding on the reverse side of the quilt. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Welcome! We have many members from the UK who will be able to advise you.

  3. #3
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    I'm not in the UK, but I thought I'd share my thought about batting--
    My all time favorite is Hobbs wool. It's on the pricey side, but it quilts beautifully. I have a flannel quilt with wool batting on my bed that gets laundered regularly and have not had any problems. There was a tiny bit of shrinkage when it was laundered the first time, but not much. I also like Hobbs 80/20 and I use it often. I don't pre-wash or pre-soak any of the batting I use. The little bit of shrinkage isn't a bother to me. I kind of like the old fashioned look. I launder my quilts in a washing machine with cold water and I dry them in the dryer on a regular setting.

  4. #4

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    Thanks for that. I think we can get Hobbs in the UK.

  5. #5
    Super Member icon17's Avatar
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    Welcome, From the USA.

    Wadding in your country and Batting in ours just to make things clear are one and the same. 8-)

  6. #6

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    Thanks for that. My wife did tell me.

    I just checked the price of Hobbs Wool in the UK and that's way too expensive unfortunately.

  7. #7
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    there are more UK members who will come and help soon i'm sure.

  8. #8
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Hobbs and Quilter's Dream are among the best brands. Hobbs 80/20 is one of my favorites. When I Googled, it looks as if both these brands are available in the UK.

    Quilter's Dream cotton (needlepunched, but not through scrim) is a very stable cotton batting that will not "beard". Hobbs 80/20 has more loft, whereas the QD gives a flatter, more traditional look. Both shrink up to 3%, which is what is typical for a traditional "crinkled" look. Neither of these battings requires pre-washing.

    If your wife does not want the batting to shrink at all, and does not want to pre-wash batting, then she would need to stick with polyester. A disadvantage of polyester battings is that they slip and slide more in the quilt sandwich. I personally prefer 80 to 100% cotton in my battings, without scrim, because cotton gets softer and softer with every washing. If your wife wants a polyester batting, I've heard that both Hobbs polydown and Quilter's Dream poly get good ratings.

  9. #9
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    Welcome to the board from Southern California!

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    Super Member Murphy's Avatar
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    Hi and welcome to the board from Iowa.

  11. #11
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    anybody from the UK who could help here??

  12. #12

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    Thanks for the welcomes and for Prism99's reply. I think my wife's been using pure cotton batting so far but was hoping to get Fairfield's 60/40 which she saw recommended by a quilter in the States but I can't find it available over here. Both of those you mention are worth investigating for us. Do they work with machines?

    Yesterday my wife that different fabrics require different battings and since she is being suppplied with fabric squares by a friend in the US that complicates matters. Can anyone comment on that. The whole thing is certainly confusing me.

  13. #13
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    I will say that you must read the batting/wadding packaging to see how far apart the quilting needs to be to keep the batting/wadding from shifting or coming apart. Some say 1 to 2 inches, some up to 10 inches apart.
    so the quilting design will also determine what batting/wadding you put in a particular quilt.

  14. #14
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Hobbs 80/20 and Quilter's Dream cotton are both excellent for machine quilting as well as hand quilting.

    You do not have to match batting to fabric content. Different battings create different effects, so choice depends largely on what you want the end result to look like. You can use wool batting with cotton fabrics, silk batting with cotton fabrics, cotton batting with cotton/polyester/silk/wool fabrics.

    As someone mentioned, some battings hold together with quilting lines up to 10 inches apart (these are the battings that are needlepunched through scrim); others need to be quilted 2 inches apart (usually battings that are not needlepunched at all). So, how closely the batting will be quilted can determine which one you buy.

    Loft is another consideration. For machine quilting, it is much easier to quilt a low loft batting than a high loft batting. Quilter's Dream cotton is low loft. Hobbs 80/20 is a modest medium loft (between low and medium) and also easy to machine quilt.

    Polyester battings are more slippery than cotton and therefore can be more difficult to machine quilt.

    Shrinkage is another consideration. Most high-quality brands limit shrinkage to 3% or less. This is true of Hobbs and Quilter's Dream. Someone who does not want any shrinkage at all might go with a polyester batting because polyester doesn't shrink. If used with pre-shrunk fabric, the quilting lines will show very strongly with a modern "harsh" edge. Most of us want at least slight shrinkage in our quilts, as it gives a softer look. Antique quilts, which are thin and soft, typically used 100% cotton batting that shrank at least 3%.

    To be honest, I would just get Hobbs 80/20 for your wife and let her use that for the first time. I'd say that this particular batting pleases the widest range of tastes, and it's easy to use. If, after using the Hobbs, your wife decides she wants a flatter batting, try the Quilter's Dream for the next quilt. But I think she'll be happy with the Hobbs 80/20.

  15. #15

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    Sorry for being so long in responding. This last week's been rather hectic. Thanks for all the input here. It sounds like Hobbs 80/20 would be worth her trying. I know she definitely doesn't want to go 100% polyester.

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