Quilting Tutorials

What Is Quilt Batting – An Easy Introduction

what is quilt batting

The right batting can have a huge effect on the finished appearance of your quilting pattern project. In fact, quilt batting can make a difference between a successful and an unsuccessful quilting project. Consequently, this can also affect whether you enjoy or end up hating your quilting venture. If you have spent hours planing and designing the look of your outer layers of your quilting project, why not spare some time to learn about quilt batting.

Quilt Batting Explained

The term batting refers to the insulating part of the quilt which create warmth. Batting is sandwiched between the quilt top layer and backing. The quilt batting is then pinned together with the outer layers to temporarily secure it. This is then sewn together by hand or machine. Usually yarn is used to tie a quilting project together, but sometimes several strands of thread are used also. Be certain to tie a tight square knot if you choose this method of securing the batting to the fabric. You want to be sure the quilt will stand up to years of use.

Fabrics Used For Quilt Batting

Several kinds of fabric is commonly used as batting such as polyester, cotton and wool. Polyester batting has a high loft which will remain through repeated washings. It is generally hypo-allergenic and usable for either hand or machine quilting projects.

Cotton batting is a quilter’s dream. It has a much lower loft than the polyester batting, and is often used when quilters want to achieve an antique look. Because cotton is a natural fiber, it “breathes,” meaning it will help you to remain cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

Cotton batting is not as suitable for tying, as it has a tendency to clump. Like cotton, wool batting breathes. It is easy to quilt, and thus a much beloved batting of many quilters.

Different Types of Quilt Batting

Batting can come in two different ways: needlepunched or bonded. What is the difference between the two and which one should you use? Needlepunched batting is a good utilitarian choice for a quilting project that needs to stand up to hard use. It is made by thousands of needles piercing the batting, interlocking the fibers.

The needlepunched batting is firmer and heavier than bonded batting. Bonded batting is manufactured by using a bonding agent to adhere the layers of the batting together. Try bonded batting if you want an easier way to quilt cotton.

Many battings, whatever form you choose, are available either pre-cut or rolled on a tube so that you can cut your own to size. If your quilting project is a standard quilt size (such as twin, full, queen, or king) you will probably be able to find a pre-cut batting quite easily. For other sizes you may need to buy batting on the roll.

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