Which Batting Should I Use?

We spend so much time piecing our quilt tops, we want to make sure we use the right batting get it quilted.

There are so many factors that go into choosing batting. But honestly, I don’t think you can make a wrong choice as long as you use a high quality batting. I feel it’s more about what’s most important to you when thinking about the use of this quilt. Will it be a wall hanging? Is it for warmth? Is it for a baby? Or is price the most important factor?

Let me give you a rundown of what I stock and what I can order for you. I’ll go over the most important differences of each but this is by no means a comprehensive list! Feel free to reach out to me if you have questions I haven’t addressed.

First of all, I only stock Quilter’s Dream battings. They are high quality battings that give me extremely reliable results. If you have used store bought batting, you’ll know they have a width requirement for spacing your quilting. Usually around 4”. This is because the batting needs those stitches to be close together to keep the structure from separating. Quilters Dream has an 8” width requirement!! I wouldn’t recommend that for many reasons, but it shows you how well made these battings are.

Batting I stock:

100% cotton

  • This will have the best drape of the 3 battings I keep on hand. It will be flat and crinkle nicely when washed.
  • Cotton will shrink the most when washing. Keep that in mind if you are looking to keep a specific dimension to your finished product.
  • Quilters Dream cotton is all natural, not chemically treated, and all the cotton comes from the US.
  • The cotton is breathable without being overly warm, so it’s good for warmer climates.

100% Poly

  • The Quilter’s Dream Poly mimics the cotton batting so closely that I was surprised when I first saw it! It’s not the high loft you think of from the box stores. It’s got a nice drape like cotton but is a slight bit more structured.
  • It does have more loft than the cotton so your quilting will be more visible on this batting.
  • Poly batting will not shrink when washed.
  • This is the most economic batting I carry.
  • Poly batting will resist creasing and wrinkles more than a natural fiber batting.
  • Because of the structure of the polyester batting, it is great for wall hangings.
  • Polyester is less breathable than the cotton and so will give you a warmer finished product.

80/20 Cotton Poly Blend

  • This is a good in between batting. The 20% poly adds a little more loft than the 100% cotton, making your quilting a slight bit more defined.
  • The blend means it will resist creases a little more than cotton, but not as much as straight polyester.
  • The blend also means that it will shrink some, but not as much as 100% cotton.
  • It’s an excellent mid range price choice.

Sweater Weather pantograph with 80/20 batting

Other Battings

Other battings that I can order and why you might consider them:

Dream Puff Polyester: This is the warmest batting Quilter’s Dream sells (1.5 times warmer than down). And it’s also the batting with the most loft. If you want a puffier quilt for a cold climate, this is one to consider.

Bamboo Silk: This is the lightest weight Quilter’s Dream sells. As a result, it has a really soft wonderful draping and will wrap nicely around the user. It has a lot of breathability and will be great for a warm climate. This might be a good option if you are looking to make a really soft baby quilt where warmth isn’t the priority.

Wool: Looking for a warmer option than the 100% cotton that is still a natural fiber? Wool is the way to go. It has great breathability, drape, and loft. But keep in mind, it is a little more expensive than cotton.

Dream Green: Are you looking for an eco conscience option? This is a great one to consider. It’s made from recycled plastic bottles!! It has a nice loft and works like the polyester with little to no shrinkage and resist wrinkles nicely. The price point is just above the polyester, but cheaper than the cotton options.

Good Vibrations pantograph with 80/20 batting

What about double layering my batting?

I’m happy to double battings for anyone who wants this option, but I would also ask what you are looking to achieve with doubling. One of the concerns with doubling your batting is whether or not the washer and dryer of the quilt owner will be able to handle all that bulk. If you make a queen size quilt with double batting, it’s almost like putting two queen size quilts into the machine! So the quilt may need to be taken to a laundromat. If you are doubling it for the warmth, you might want to consider the Wool batting or the Dream Puff. If you are looking for the quilting to be more visible (the loft of the batting), consider 100% poly or again the Wool or Dream Puff. These might get the results you are looking for without the cost of two battings.

Selecting a batting is really about personal preference. I’m happy to discuss the options with you and help you come to the right decision for your specific quilt. My goal is always to make your piecing look its best!

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