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AIBU to want to use polycotton for a quilt backing

(11 Posts)
Strawdolly Wed 26-Feb-14 13:12:18

I'm very much a 'do it right or don't do it at all' PITA wink type of person and the thought of not using proper cotton for a backing would normally horrify me, but the quilt top I'm making at the moment is made from samples of furnishing fabrics, not patchwork cotton, so I'm wondering if that would give me a little leeway in my choice of backing fabric. Also I have said fabric in my stash and I don't know what else to do wtih it. What do you reckon, crafters, will it make any difference?

BigBoobiedBertha Wed 26-Feb-14 16:16:04

Nah, go for it. Use a polyester thread instead of the usual cotton. I reckon it will be fine.

I'n a PITA do it right or don't bother type too.smile

Strawdolly Wed 26-Feb-14 18:15:21

Thank you, Bertha smile. After all that I can't find the bloody stuff - I must have given it away when I was having a clear out. Is that not typical. I've got some sheets that my friend gave me so looks like it'll be cotton after all smile

BigBoobiedBertha Thu 27-Feb-14 12:07:35

Sheets would be fab. You could dye them too and get any colour backing you fancied. smile

Strawdolly Thu 27-Feb-14 13:55:57

Oo, now there's an idea - thank you, Bertha smile

LatteLady Thu 27-Feb-14 15:53:52

OK, the reason that you should not mix cottons and polyesters is that they will move at different rates when you wash it, which means your wadding will pucker up between the two fabrics.

Strawdolly Thu 27-Feb-14 17:32:33

Ah, thank you, Latte, I'll remember that for the future.

A little late to the party....

LatteLady is right -- polyester and cotton shrink differently, so I wouldn't mix them, unless what you're making isn't going to be laundered (ever). Personally, I try to keep the top, backing and thread 100% cotton, just to make sure they "play well together".

I have read a few opinions on using flat sheets as backings, but in general the posters urged not to, as the thread count is often either lower or the fabric was not as fine as quilting cotton, making the actual quilting difficult. I guess that would not be so much of an issue if you are machine-quilting your project.

There is a Yahoo! group called Stashbusters which is HUGE (over 5000 members) and they have taught me so much in the 7 years I have been a member there. Very helpful, very supportive.

JamNan Fri 14-Mar-14 10:39:49

@ NeedsAGreen
I got into a right pickle quilting the last quilt I made - now I know why. Poly/cotton sheet for the backing and tight weave cotton on top with bamboo in between. I ended up doing it by hand.

I don't think the batting really matters; they generally write on the packaging how much it shrinks. So far, I've quilted Quilter's Dream poly as well as cotton, and both were fine. And then there are the quilts I did using batting I scored at a remnant place that sold the stuff for €3/meter. Those are fine too. Just that poly is known for "bearding", i.e. the fibres come through the top, but I really haven't had that problem yet.

How did the bamboo quilt? I haven't tried it yet, but it does sound intriguing. Is it warmer than cotton?

JamNan Mon 17-Mar-14 06:56:48

I think the problem was the tightness of the weaves making the fabrics move in different ways - must be to do with the thread count.

Bamboo batting quilts very well although I can't say if it's any warmer than cotton (or wool). I always use natural fibres for batting as I think they 'breathe' better than manmade/synthetic.

In the case of this last quilt I happened to have a sheet that was the perfect colour. BTW I used Kaffe Fassett batiks for the top and it was a dream to work with.

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