November 28, 2008

How to make a Doll Quilt from Memory Fabrics Part 3

Selecting a batting. For small projects batting is inexpensive and you can easily select any that you would like. Polyester comes in many different "lofts" this refers to how puffy your finished project will be. Low loft is a little push, and high loft is much more full. You can also buy cotton batting, or alternatives such as Bamboo Batting. The cotton batting is called needled cotton this is like you took a felting machine and moved it all over the surface of the batting. It is nice to work with providing warmth with low loft. The more you need the heavier it is. The Red Star Quilt was made with this and to say it's heavy is a bit of an understatement. Three yards of Warm and White, plus the weight of batting and backing. Oh yes. My daughter told me in the summer months her Warm and White quilt is to "hot" whereas she expresses no such complaints over her light weight med. to low loft polyester quilt.

I have heard that Bamboo is like Warm and White (also called Warm and Natural, it just depends on the color) only it is not so heavy. I'd like to try it some day.

Other options for batting are to use flannel. One piece of flannel will do the job and be lightweight, just be sure to watch the cost flannel as it can be quite costly.

In my case I have a pretty flannel that I bought at "scrap prices" meaning someone else bought it and brought it back. Normally these cuts are under a yard you just have to sort through the bargain bins a bit. It is pretty hearts on one side and white on the other. Because we are making a doll blanket I'm going to not use batting at all and instead simply baste my flannel to my quilt and then quilt it.

There are three ways you select from your your quilt back. You can choose Traditional Amish, this is a natural muslin backing, plain of patterns. You can choose to select a printed pattern on your fabric. This will hide any slight perfections you might have in your quilting and will have a second appealing side to view. Lastly is a two sided quilt, that means you create a second quilt to go on the back. Be mindful with these, depending on how you quilt it the quilting lines might not line up.

Now that you have selected your backing you can begin to baste. If you're using a batting you will want to spread it out. I like to Spray baste but there are other methods.

If you are going to spray baste select a spray adhesive and spray the top of the batting (the side that is up, batting doesn't have a top vs. a bottom both sides are the same). Now roll your little quilt top into a tube. Line the tube up to one inch from the top of the batting and gently unroll it, pressing as you go. Smoothing it out along the batting.
It is now ready to quilt.
If you don't have any spray adhesive and don't want to buy any you can always pin baste. See here with the pins as I have worked my pins out from the center? Gently remove the pins as you come to them when quilting, old school says you can sew over them, but you risk breaking a needle or worse yet pieces in your eye. So use caution.
You can also hand baste with a needle and thread, sew nice big stitches outwards from the center. Or use really big stitches on your sewing machine being careful not to let the backing slide away from the quilt top.

No matter what you picked your quilt is now basted and ready to quilt.

No comments: