Choosing Quilt Batting-Open Line Friday

Quilt, Free Motion Quilting, Sunflower

The Sunflower Sampler

Hello Quilters and Quilt-Lovers!

Welcome to Open Line Friday.

Everyone asks.  Everyone answers.

Today I’d like to start the ball rolling with a discussion about batting.

There are many battings on the market.

Some of the fibers include:

  • Cotton
  • Wool
  • Polyester
  • Silk
  • Bamboo
  • Combination blends of the fibers


  • How far apart can the quilt be stitched.  (Usually varies between 4-10″).
  • Does the fiber have memory–in other words, does it resist creasing?
  • Does the fiber breath?
  • Does the batting beard–fibers migrate through the top of the quilt?
  • What is the cost of the batting?
  • Is the batting readily available?

The two battings I use regularly are Hobb’s Dream Wool and Warm and Natural cotton.

Free Motion Quilting, Batting


I love wool for bed and lap quilts.

Wool holds up beautifully to washing--no dry cleaning necessary.  In fact, it gets softer and better with repeated washings.

Wool has “memory” — it is crease resistant.

Wool breaths well-making it great for quilts you sleep under.

It is a bit more expensive than the other battings, but I think it is well worth it.


For my smaller vase quilts, I like Warm and Natural all cotton.

It is a little flatter which I like for small projects.

It also breaths well.

Warm and Natural cotton naturally clings to the top and bottom fabrics.  Consequently, if the project is small enough, there is no need to baste.

Cotton is readily available and modestly priced.

(I have also used cotton for larger quilts–it also washes well!)

Free Motion Quilting, Flowers



We’d love to hear!


NOTE-The Sunflower wallhanging was stitched with wool batting.  Because wool has “memory”  it pops up in areas where there is little stitching and has a “mock-trapunto” look.

PS…All tutorials, information and images are the property of Lori Kennedy of The Inbox Jaunt and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin, share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at  Thanks!




97 thoughts on “Choosing Quilt Batting-Open Line Friday

  1. I have never used anything but polyester wadding. For two reasons, the first is that it doesn’t shrink, and the second is that it’s so much cheaper than cotton. I’m not sure, but I’ve also heard that it’s warmer and lighter too. All things I want from wadding.

  2. I’m anxious to read all the responses. I have 2 quilts that I’ve been debating about what batting to use.

    One is a mariners compass that I will use on my sail boat and wool sounded like the best option but I don’t know anyone who has used wool. I would like it to not be too big and fluffy (actually on the thin side) and I would like it to handle the moisture of being on the boat. It would also be nice to be able to wash.

    The other quilt is one I’m still working on. It’s a “trip around the world” with 1 1/2″ finished blocks in flannel and a flannel back. This is a nice sized lap size and I’ve made it with 1/2″ seams (advice from shop owner) because she said flannel tends to ravel (I’ve done half of the top and the fabric has held up beautifully). I’ve pressed my seams to the side and now someone suggested I press them open (I’m not sure what to do about that). This quilt will go to my son in Seattle, another moist environment. I’m open to suggestions as to what batting to use.

    I’m very much looking forward to reading what others are doing.


  3. I just finished a.quilt with wool batting. It shrunk and bearded so badly I’m now.unpicking all my free motion quilting. I’m heart broken. I can’t.remember the make cause the quilt was a few years in the making. Any tips for how to unquilt? Any advice for quilting wool vs cotton? Thanks. Jennie.

      • Jennie, I am a longarm quilter and picked out many quilts. My suggestion is Go For It. Winter is setting in and a good time to sit in front of the TV with your favorite program. I discovered many years ago that a Dental Pick is the best tool. You can find them at Harbor Freight stores or ask your dentist for one. The angle of each end gives you choices. Once I find the end of the top thread and can pull the bottom thread to the top, the dental pick pulls it up easy.. I just hold onto the top thread & give it a tug. You will be surprised at how fast it will go.
        Pat Skinner

    • Jenny, the same thing happened to me two years ago, the wollen batting wasn’t meant to be machine washed. I unpicked the heavily machine quilted thread by pulling out the bottom thread, and I could peel the back and top of the quilt from the filted batting. It was worth it, I still use wollen batting, but always make a 4×4″ testquilt and machine wash & dry it.

  4. I’ve been wanting to try wool but haven’t, someday I will though, I use 80/20 Hobbs and also a poly batting. I really would prefer not to use the poly but since 99% of my quilts are donated, I simply can’t afford to use anything but poly.

    • I prefer cotton batting for children’s quilts. In the event of a fire, cotton will burn quickly whereas 100% poly will melt, possibly doing much more harm to a child.

  5. Probably there is not subject that will draw a bevy of answers. I use Hobbs 80/20 for many of my projects. I like the way it behaves in most applications. I use wool and silk in special projects and most bed coverings. They are very comfortable to sleep under. I like the responsiveness of these fibers after washing. I realize that silk and wool are more expensive but like to protect the investment that I have already put into quality fabric to say nothing of the time spent to construct it. The end result is worth the extra cost. I always dry quilts flat on plastic paint drop cloths on the floor. I recently had a polyester batt and used part of it in a table runner. It was just flat and I did not like the way it looked when finished. I was really disappointed when I compared it to runners that had cotton batting. I will look forward to the comments of others.

    • Laroletta, thank you for your insight. I agree-batting can make all the difference in the final outcome of a quilt and is worth the time and money invested in experimenting to get it right. I really look forward to hearing what others recommend.

  6. I use Hobbs 80/20. It gives a nice look and is breathable. There is a new combo of wool and cotton from Hobbs. I would like to try it in a bed quilt! It would be breathable and warm. Poly is so uncomfortable to sleep under. It makes you sweat.

  7. I used Hobbs 80/20 or 100% cotton quite a bit because that was the best that is locally available. But recently I bought two LARGE rolls of 50/50 of Warm & Plus an I gotta say – it’s the best of both worlds! I switched to rolls because of the amount of quilts I have to do, and also I was tired of the wrinkled batting in bags and it getting stretched out of shape. Not to mention all the leftover bits.

    I haven’t tried wool batting yet but I’d like to. It’s expensive here in Canada.

    I have also tried the green recycled batting but it did pill. 100% poly I just can’t work with. Over everything else, it bothers my allergies. Cutting 100% cotton OR poly winds up making fibres everywhere that bothers my lungs and my skin. :/

    However – the 50/50 is needle punched, doesn’t have fibres all over and since it’s on a roll, way less cutting and handling.

  8. I am a newbie to quilting, so I don’t have an opinion yet. But I have to ask about wool batting and washing. Do you do it by machine on a gentle cycle? Has it ever shrunk like I’ve seen sweaters do?

    • I have washed wool quilts and thrown them in the dryer. I usually dry for less than ten minutes and lay out to dry the rest of the way. My college daughters washed and dryer their quilts and those quilts are as soft as butter. The package says to expect about 3 percent shrinkage. It makes the quilting look lovely… so I assume it’s not more than that.

  9. I’m wondering what type of batting to use for my son’s bed quilt. He wants it to be more like a comforter than a traditional quilt. I used a high loft polyester batting (before I knew there were so many options) for my oldest son’s quilt and tied it. Tying worked well, and he loves the quilt. Is high loft polyester my best option or are there others?

    • I started out quilting with warm & natural 100% cotton, but like your son, didn’t like how flat it was. I’ve used 100% wool and am very pleased with the loft afterwards. Another one that I use for loft is 50/50 cotton/poly, or 80/20 poly. I like the poly for the loft but do not like it when used 100%. All in all, I love wool the most.

  10. I love wool for hand quilting, but have not used it for machine yet. I generally use an 80/20 and am happy with that. Warm & Natural is too dense for hand quilting, but now that I have switched to machine quilting I will consider using it again. I like the idea of a cotton/wool blend. I will look into that.

  11. You mentioned “Hobbs Dream Wool” but the photo includes a bag labeled “Hobbs Premium Wool Batting” – are they one and the same?

    As soon as I saw that sunflower I wondered how you made the flower POP. Ah-ha. Wool batting. Oh yes….I remember trapunto.

    It will be interesting to read what has and has not worked so well for others on various projects & the effect they wanted to achieve by selecting that particular batting. The selection in stores is overwhelming.

    Understandably, when donating quilts one might have to go with a less expensive batting, but for yourself – spend the money. You have hours and hours of work involved, not to mention the price of fabric, thread, etc. Quality in – quality out.

    Tavette – S. Florida

  12. I really like Dream Cotton. I know it’s more expensive than others but have gotten great results both machine and hand quilting. When doing charity quilts I try to find Warm and Natural on sale. Sounds like I need to try some Hobbs.

    • I really love Dream Cotton too!! That’s basically all I buy anymore. I tried the bamboo and while it’s nice and soft, it pilled horribly :-(. I buy different weights of Dream Cotton and use thinner for table runners and all cotton for baby quilts so it can breathe :-).

    • I’ve waited for a 50% or 60% off coupon from Joannes and then buy 10-20 yards of Warm & Natural from their bolt. It works for making charity quilts, or your own if it is your go-to choice.

    • I use Dream Cotton and wool. I love the feel of the batting, and it quilts beautifully. I love wool. It is a bit loftier, but it gives nice definition to the quilting.

  13. I have been a long-arm quilter for 14 years now and I’ve probably seen and used most of the battings that have come along in that time. I used to supply W&N battings for my clients until I learned that it’s primary use is in window shades(!) It’s purposely made to be dense to hold up to being vertical. Being so dense it’s nearly impossible to hand quilt too. Most clients prefer Hobbs 80/20 as it’s loft is “just right” (think of Goldilocks) and it’s easily hand quilted.

    Wool has come a long way in the past 10 years. I find dependent upon the manufacturer, it’s quality keeps improving. My first experience with wool was a Hobbs
    product. It layed flat as a pancake and offered little loft. I love Matilde wool from Australia, but it’s no longer being shipped to the US. Now I’m suppling Tuscany Wool to clients who want a supple deliciously warm in winter, cool in summer quilt. It’s weight is light and is a pleasure for those who love to do hand work and for me, it’s like quilting butter.

    You can always talk about what batting to use in which climates. Those who have used wool want it for quilts headed for the cool and cold climates. At the same time, it breathes well enough to be used in warm and hot climates too.

    For my personal pictoral designs, I use wool batting. It’s evenly processed, no layer on top of layer, and it doesn’t maintain creases or folds from being shipped to shows and exhibits. Bed, baby, and gift quilts all get Hobbs 80/20.

    I think batting is a personal choice. Like designing, auditioning fabric, and those “what if” moments, it’s worth experimenting with to see what you love about each one.

    • Mikey, Thank you for your considered response. I agree that it is well worth the time and money to experiment with samples of different battings. Batting makes a huge difference in the overall quality of the end product. We spend so much time (and money) on our quilts, that we should not be overly frugal with the time (and money) we spend picking the right batting.

    • I agree with using wool for hand quilting. Before I knew better, I quilted Warm and Natural for two bed-size quilts. I couldn’t believe the difference when I used wool! I was in heaven.

  14. I feel for the lady and all her reverse quilting.
    My theory is, if the quilt will be washed over and over, as in a baby or child’s quilt, use something inexpensive.
    A good quality flannel won’t fray any more than something like Moda. I/2inch seams? Ouch.

    • Another way to look at it–if it’s going to be washed over and over-it might benefit from a high quality batting. My first experience with wool was for two quilts for my daughters who were going off to college. They washed and dryer the quilts several times in the dorm washers and dryers. When they brought those quilts home–I was sold! The feel was LOVELY-like butter. So much nicer after all the abuse!

    • I wanted a light batting for a quilt for my friend, her cancer was advancing over the summer and though it was hot and humid she needed a blankie. I used bamboo and it was perfect. Soft, light, draped beautifully, washer and drier friendly.

      • I have used bamboo or bamboo blend in smaller quilts. These quilts were given away so I don’t know how well they have held up. But I loved working with it.

    • I tried bamboo once and it pilled very badly! I also tried it because of its silky feel, but didn’t like the way it quilted up.

    • Yes I gave it a go just recently on 1 of my larger quilts because I wanted to try it and it was on special. I found it just an easy to use as the cotton and wool battings. The quilt finished really soft. It makes a lovely cuddly quilt. I will use it again.

  15. What about the itchiness factor of wool? I can’t wear anything with any proportion of wool in it. I’m afraid even the seams would aggravate me.

    • Itchiness factor – when I read that I think of allergies. I have an allergy to wool – I can’t spend much time in the men’s suit sections of stores. When handling wool, my hands itch afterwards – I handle it infrequently and wash my hands right away. If you find wool itchy, it might be an allergy – your doctor can run tests to verify.

  16. All the batting comments are great. When Warm & Natural first came out, I loved it for the flatter look after all the years of only poly, but like someone else said, it does not hand quilt. For the past 12 years or so, my “go-to” batting was Hobbs 80-20. There was just enough poly to keep it light and easy to get a needle through if hand quilting was the finish. I also really like the Quilters Dream cotton and other varieties. The cotton comes in several different weights, so there is some choice, and it needles well. I also like the Tuscany silk batting and I did a piece with that and Shashiko that turned out really well. I would just tell you all to try different things in smaller projects so you can get a real idea of what would work for your special project. If it’s not in your budget to buy the more expensive ones for practice, see if a friend or two would split one with you. I would also suggest you shop around for good prices – some of the catalogs have specials occasionally.

    One thing that some art quilters are using now for a batting is wool felt. It stands up really well to machine quilting/threadwork as well as handwork. Of course, this would not be washed so best for wall art.

    Thanks for the forum, Lori!

  17. I’ve used mostly Warm and Natural. For a piece I wanted to lay very flat, I used a piece of thin cotton flannel as batting. I’ve also used polyester fleece as a backing/batting (only one piece of fleece behind the cotton top.) That makes a soft and cuddly quilt.

    My parents live where it is chilly and damp, and use fleece lap throws exclusively. I’m making them a quilt and was going to try using fleece as the batting between a cotton top and cotton backing. I’m hoping it will be nice and warm for them, but also have the nice softness of cotton. But perhaps wool would be a better choice so that it will crinkle up the way I like ?Food for thought!

  18. This is a wonderful subject-so many views. Another thing to help track batting performance is to keep documentation of each quilt you make, including the fabrics and batting used. I take a photo of each of my finished quilts and place it in a Word document that has the date, place, and materials used for each quilt. This makes it much easier to part with them.

    • I do the same thing with keeping record of my quilts. I had an aunt who made astounding quilts and not one has a label. I have no idea when, in her 80-year life, she made them. That made me very strict about keeping a provenance of each. In addition to the “facts” I also write down why I made it and if there are any stories in the making.

  19. I use Hobbs 80/20 on the roll as well for my long arm clients. Before I started quilting for others I used Dream Cotton by the package for my quilts. I hand quilted one using wool and LOVED the way it needled. Now , I’ve noticed, people are starting to use 2 batts when machine quilting for the extra “poof” in the unquilted areas (think trapunto without all the cutting). I’m anxious to try that on my next personal quilt!

  20. One Christmas, I made quilts for my 3 daughters and quilts for their husbands too. All lap sized. Normally, my go to batting has been Warm and Natural – especially for all the baby quilts I make. On a whim, I used some bamboo on one of the sons-in-law’s quilt. It is several years old now and so soft and cuddly. I am impressed. I bought bamboo for my next quilt and in Houston picked up some samples of wool/cotton blend to play with on small products and to check wash ability. Batting has come a long way baby!

  21. Currently in love with Dream Orient, light but warm, gave my quilting depth. I am allergic to wool so that is not an option for me. I have machine and hand quilted with most of the major cotton and blend battings, I despise 100 percent poly, always had a problem with bearding.

  22. I have to go back and read all of these throughout the day! Interesting! I have always used Warm and Natural and love the outcome every time. I just recently purchased the Heirloom washable wool after reading that’s what you like on your bed quilts and want to give it a try so just got them for half price online…so have one queen size and one king almost ready to quilt. Good post…love reading everyone’s ideas and experiences.

  23. I love love love Quilters Dream batting. Their wool batting is wonderful. It does not beard and is washable and can machine dried. It is lighter than cotton and drapes beautifully. I also use Quilters Dream cotton for some projects. I go considerable out of my way to purchase Quilters Dream batting, often having to order it if my local shop does not have what I need

    I have used wool batting with a flannel backing. I make sure to use quality flannel and wash and machine dry it before quilting. It holds up well.

  24. Because I’m a Business I keep different ones, but most of my customers pick Dream Poly Select. I show them a sample and 95 % of the time that is what they pick.. I do like the Hobbs 80/20 and all the others mentioned above. What I do not like is the Green Dream Batting made from plastic water bottles. Don’t like the feel. So depending on your project in choosing the batting. As for spacing, my rule is using my hand which is about 4″ x 6″ and of course what is it for ? I just finished a Baby quilt with Mickie fabric on the back so not too tight. I buy both rolls & packages. If the package batting has too many creases I put it in the dryer for 10 minutes, lay it over the longarm & let it rest for a day. Cost is a big factor and the shipping just keeps getting worse, I joined with other longarm friends and we order together. Pat

  25. I am such a rebel, many may be shocked by my batting habits!
    For bed quilts, baby quilts, quilts to be USED and laundered often, I use Quilter’s Dream Select or Request (thin) cotton. I love the pucker after washing! My favorite batting for a special quilt is Quilter’s Dream 70/30 blend. I love the thickness and how it takes the FMQ. For a wall quilt I even layer 2 Quilter’s Dream Blend batts, the extra thickness helps the quilt hang nicely and shows off the stitching. When doing showy FMQ, I layer Quilter’s Dream Blend under a wool batt. The wool puffs beautifully and the Blend stabilizes the quilt. I have used an all-wool batt for a quilt for my brother, as he lives in the mountains and gets really cold. This was under a top made from batiks, so there was no bearding. He has laundered it as well, with no shrinking.

    I highly recommend quilters to get every possible type and brand of batt to make samples from. It helps to see if you like all the qualities. With all my quilting buddies, we share our scraps for these exercises and share are results as well.

  26. Hobbs wool batting is my batting of choice. I quilt my quilts on my Bernina, and it is easily scrunched for maneuvering through the machine. This is especially important to me when quilting large quilts. An added bonus it that it doesn’t leave fold marks like cotton does….nice and cuddly and warm.

    • So Linda you encouraged me I’m on the right track…excited to start quilting on my King quilt on my Bernina now too…the Warm and Natural scrunched up in the machine gets hard and heavy to maneuver which is what I’ve always used. Almost all my quilts are bed size so think the wool is going to be a bit more fun! :)!! Anyone want to crawl around on the floor and help me pin! haha! this is getting harder for me each year! Well I can crawl around…it’s getting up that’s getting hard…LOL!!

      • Oh…good idea Lori!! Man I really need to start thinking out of the basement! haha! I dread the pinning so bad! a big table would help so much….or a longarm, I would take a longarm! LOL!!

      • I bought the plastic bed-risers and use them on my kitchen table. It raises it up quite a bit. I’m tall and, unfortunately, the risers don’t bring it up enough for me… If I could use two under each leg, I’d be a happy person. Unfortunately, they nest with each other. BTW, you can get these at Joann’s when school starts. Probably always at big places like Target and Walmart. They are inexpensive too!

      • terri, regarding bed risers, I have seen them in different heights online. I may have even seen some that were adjustable (but not sure if that is correct).

  27. Does anyone have experience with washing and drying quilts made with Quilter’s Dream wool batting? I’ve just bought a couple of them to make quilts for my grandchildren who live in Ohio, a place that seems unbearably cold to my thin California blood. I was told that when washing the finished quilt, one should set the dryer on “air only,” because heat would make the batting a bit stiff. I know that manufacturers often like to be super cautious in their recommendations, so does anyone have any real life experience with this batt?

    • Cut a piece of batting (I use a 4x 4″ piece) make a small quilt and throw it in the washing machine (you can put it in a zipper lingerie bag to prevent possible bearding to rubb of on your clothes). And then you tumble dry, and you’ll know for sure if it can take the heat.

  28. I used to use cotton or cotton/poly batting for all my quilts (both bed and art quilts) until I made a quilt our of Maywood cotton Woolies flannel with cotton batting, for my dad for Christmas. Dad was always cold. He said it was the nicest Christmas present he ever received, but it was too heavy on him, so he didn’t use it.
    I made another quilt of my leftover Maywood flannel and a black flannel border print. I used Matilda’s Own black wool batting, because I didn’t want any white bearding coming through the black flannel. It quilted up beautifully on my home sewing machine. I keep it in the living room, where it gets pet hair on it sometimes. I have washed it several times. I just toss it in the washer on a gentle cycle, and then in the dryer for several minutes on a gentle cycle, and then take it out and spread it out and let it finish air-drying. It is lightweight and soooo very comfortable. It is warm without being heavy or making you perspire. It is much more comfortable than a quilt with cotton batting.
    I made a lap quilt also using Hobb’s wool batting. It is lightweight, warm, and drapes nicely.
    I read that Angela Walters has done some of Tula Pink’s quilts with 2 layers of batting (cotton/poly on the bottom and wool on top). I am experimenting with that on my current quilt. I am making a small mariner’s compass quilt, with a layer of cotton/poly on the bottom and a layer of Quilter’s Dream wool on top), to try the trapunto-effect.

    One caveat… I ruined one sample of Quilter’s Dream thermally bonded batting when I tried to get some wrinkles out of it by putting in in the dryer. When I took it out of the dryer, the batting in places had become a very thin, hard, yellowed, stiff sheet of fiber, with no loft whatsoever. It was just in some places. I cut the ruined parts out and taped the good parts together.

  29. I generally use Dream microfiber poly–it is very soft, washes well, and breathes. It is lighter weight than cotton and does not pull moisture in when it rains or we’re at the beach. I have used wool once, and love how it breathes! Also light weight and fluffy. It is not itchy, and because it’s all encased in a cotton top and bottom, does not get wool moths.

    Lori, you said you wash your wool bat quilt–want to share the technique? I don’t want it to “felt” in the washer!

  30. On my first quilts, when I was still learning, I didn’t want to spend a lot of money, so I used Poly batting. Every time I wash those quilts, I curse myself. They pill so badly, but represent so many hours of hard work for me!

    Then I moved to Warm and Natural. I’ve been using that for years. In my area, it’s a little less expensive than Hobbs 80/20. (W&N is 87/13–I know because I just came from the fabric store where I bought a whole bolt!) Recently I have discovered Fairfield Soft & Toasty. The loft on WN is 1/8″ and the loft on Soft & Toasty is 1/4″ I make a lot of baby quilts and really like the loftier batting on those. Makes me feel they are “warm & cozy.”

    I have always heard wool was wonderful, but I thought it couldn’t be machine washed and dried. Next time I make a quilt for myself, I think I’ll try it. I have heard it quilts beautifully–either by hand (which I don’t do) and by machine. I have a friend who’s a hand quilter and she swears by it!

    This same friend also tried Bamboo because someone told her it was just as nice to hand quilt on as Wool. She did not agree. She does NOT look Bamboo and said it was worse to hand quilt on than WN (horrors!). 🙂 I haven’t tried it, but the price does give me pause….

  31. .I also recommend the dental pick. I keep it handy when I’m quilting, and use it to rip out.stitches. I also got the strongest magnification of inexpensive reading glasses, and wear them for this detail work. I like it for the evenings when I’m watching TV. I live just north of Seattle, and have used Warm and Natural, Poly, wool and silk battings. It depends more on the look and memory you want to give your quilt. Warm and White/Natural will have almost no loft, and lay quite flat, poly and wool give more loft. I have used all of them for my quilts in my home, and they all do well.

  32. Thanks very good information. Unfortunately here in my country there is no such classification batting.
    Maybe when I travel to your country, to me this information will be useful to buy.

  33. Hi. I live in Australia, here we love the locally produced Matilda’s Own range of batting. My first preference is the 80/20 wool batting, which has lovely loft,it has a very light scrim which stops it shrinking or bearding. It washes fantastically well. I run an gift quilt program, where we donate for 200 quilts a year to sick & homeless children,adolescents & adults. For these quilts, we use the Matilda’s Own Polyester.
    It is very different from the springy polyester batts and behaves a little like a thicker cotton.It drapes nicely, has a little loft, does not shrink, it is cheaper than both the wool & cotton batts & washes very well. For those quilters, who make gift quilts, one way of economising is to use up all of your batting scraps. I like the following method;
    Select the same batting. Cut some 2 inch strips of very light iron- on interfacing. Use a rotary cutter & ruler to straighten the edges of the batting, butt them together & iron the interfacing strip over the top.

    • I’m late to the game. But for my Charity quilts I use fleece. often I can get larger peices as a remnant and I zig zag them together either matching colors or not. IT becomes both the back and the Batting for the quilt. I try to get the NO PILL form, which I feel holds up well either way.

  34. I am just a new quilter but I have used 3 different battings. The first was 100% wool and it turned out beautifully. I loved the contrast between the parts of the quilt quilted closer together, to those that were quilted further apart (the puffiness.) I loved the drape of it and it’s thermal qualities. I loved the delicate crinkle after washing – very subtle, but lovely. Shrinkage was negligable. It was a lap quilt for my daughter who feels the cold and I can honestly say she takes it almost everywhere!

    Then I used a cotton/bamboo blend which was harder to quilt, bearded and the contrast between the close together quilting and the further apart was not so obvious and even though the drape was okay, I was disappointed with the look of it.

    I have also tried 100% cotton which I find is great for regular projects and stuff that takes a bit of abuse (like the mini quilts I have in our tea and coffee making area of the kitchen.) It stands up to the regular washes it gets and is also useful for things that go in the microwave like microwave bowl potholders and potato bags as they don’t spontaneously combust; I find I am able to get the 100% cotton (and sometimes the 100% wool) batting for 30-40% off at my local craft store and I use these times to stock up!

  35. I use Ouilters Dream cotton for all the quilts I make for the grandchildren. I do like the cotton fwhen doing machine quilting. The bed quilts I make for myself get Hobbs wool or Tuscany depending I what I can find. Now that I’m so far from any local shop, I’ll be doing much more online shopping. I use wool for my hand quilted quilts, except for the crib quilts, and then I love White Rose. I don’t know if that’s even available anymore…it was a Mountain Mist product I found at Hobby Lobby. It hand quilted beautifully and has held up well to all the laundering a baby quilt gets.

    The first quilt in which I used a Hobbs wool batting has been on our bed constantly since 2000. It’s been machine washed ,cold, gentle, with Orvus paste and dried flat outdoors or on low in my dryer depending on the season. This quilt is light,warm in the winter and cooler in summer. I used a different wool batting in another quilt,, but it was thinner and I wasn’t as pleased. The most recent quilt I finished has Dream Wool in it, and I have not washed it yet, but I expect it will wash and dry just fine.

  36. I love all the Dream Batting choices, especially the Dream Angel for baby and quilts for the elderly – flame retardant!!! I have 3 rolls of Hobbs 80/20 that I have come to despise – the density is not even and the dratted stuff beards while still on my quilting frame! I love the way wool batting breathes – great for a quilt you want to use all year round! I only use polyester batting on wall hangings – it doesn’t breathe at all and it melts if there is a fire. Bamboo and silk battings are very expensive but they have a wonderful “hand” – the drape is fabulous! Cotton is all right and not terribly expensive. I do wash my wool batting before I use it – in the bath tub and then into a hot dryer. When I really want my quilting to stand out, I’ll use a double batting of wool over cotton or wool over poly (that feels like I’m quilting a down comforter!). For show quilts, a double batting of wool is great.

  37. Pretty much all I’ve ever used is Quilter’s dream because that is what my local quilt shop carries……but after reading all this I think I’ll branch out and definately try wool and maybe bamboo. I misread someones comment above and thought she said she used wool for environmental reasons. This got me wondering if wool batting would be better for the environment as cotton is sprayed so much and I know I know I do use that sprayed cotton in my quilts , although sometimes I go for the organic cotton. Any knowledge or thoughts on this aspect?

  38. I’ve been machinequilting my quilts for 22 years, my favorite batting for bedquilts is wool from Tuscany or Hobbs, but not the one firmly stuffed in plastic, that’s a horror, the batting is thinner and stretched on the folds. I only buy batting coming from a roll.

    After a miscommunication I purchased woolen batting for handwash only, it didn’t like the machine wash and really hated the dryer. It was like felt, the batting had tried to escape the quilt, and it looked like the quilt had grown fur. I unpicked the binding and the quiltthread (from the back), peeled off the layers, got rid of the remaining fur and used another woolen batting. Now I always make a 4x 4″ quilt to test the batting in washing machine and dryer.

    Silk batting from Tuscany is a dream to quilt, I had the pleasure of using one on a kingsize quilt, it drapes beautifully, feels light, can take machine washing a tumble dry, and when you take the quilt out of a bag after a few days (for a Show&Tell) there are no folds to be seen! If only it wasn’t so expensive. It doesn’t have a high loft, the one I used, I don’t know if it comes in different lofts.

    Bamboo is also lovely for machine quilting, and has a nice drape, but you must be very carefull not to let the batting touch the outside of the quilt when you machine quilt it, because it looked like I had the Chinchilla Cattery over for tea on my dark colored batic quilt. Machine washing and drying didn’t remove the pilled fibers on the outside, so I had to use the white sticky clothes roller to remove the pilling. But the quilt looked and felt great and it keeps you warm when it’s freezing. Never used this batting again though.
    For wallhangings I use the white polyester, it lies flat, doesn’t sag, and gives enough fullness where needed. I don’t tumble dry wallhangings, I just let them dry lying flat on the Floor.
    I’ve tried cotton but I find it tough to machine quilt it, and it feels heavy.

  39. Really interesting information here. I have used warm and natural for 20 years. I guess I should try some washable wool next. Never heard of quilters dream ? Where is the best price for washable wool ?

    • I buy my wool from Connecting Threads. I wait for them to have their sale on batting and then buy. It is usually 40% off but only comes in a bag, but I haven’t had a problem because of that.

  40. My husband has wool allergies so I am hesitant to use wool in a quilt I might like to put on our bed. I have use Hobbs 80/20 for years but it seems to gotten stiffer and cheaper made. Price is right though. Quilters Dream is what I have turned to. The polyester acts like cotton and the cotton blend quilts wonderfully.

  41. My go to is Quilters Dream Select, request or poly. they all have a nice drape. After reading all these comments, I think I’ll try wool.

  42. In a couple of different guilds, we did batting sample. I bought batting in local shops the first time. Cut strips 2″ x 18″. Each member brought in a half yard o muslin and pins. They each got a numbered sample, which they pinned side by side on the muslin. Then on they back of the muslin, they wrote the information about each piece. Later they could put fabric over the batting and quilt through them all. Making notes on they muslin about how it felt to sew it.

    The second time I did this, I contacted batting companies and explained what we were doing. We did receive samples from the companies. It was over 25years between these 2 times, so there was a lot more batting varieties on the market. All this makes great references for future quilts you may make.

  43. I love Quilter Dream cotton. I have used the Request and the Angelic which is flame retardant (used for children’s Quilts). I LOVE it. I am thinking of quilting my son’s quilt in Quilter’s Dream wool. First time using it. What size needle should I use? What is a small needle?

  44. I have a question about batting that just occurred to me a while back. I have Hobbs 80/20 batting that I’ve had for years (don’t get much quilting done), and I also bought a wool batting several years ago. Is it okay for this batting to be stored in it’s plastic packaging for so long? I know you should not store fabric in plastic, but what about batting? Thanks in advance for any comments.

  45. I use wool batting for bed quilts for superior warmth and breathing. Cotton is my choice for lap quilts, wall hangings, table runners, or place mats/mug rugs. I only have access to Dream Wool and Dream Cotton here in my town. However, I’d like to try a different cotton for a softer finish, and a more dense wool for our mountain nights.

    • Have you ever tried 2 battings? I read a post of a woman using cotton and putting wool on the top. She used the wool to make the stitching design pop! It looked nice. I just wondered how it was to wash and dry and of course, the thickness in quilting would be more. However, if I used the thinnest cotton, I think that is the Dream Request, it might not be too bad. Just a thought.

  46. Pingback: The Modern Wholecloth Mystery Quilt | The Inbox Jaunt

We'd LOVE to hear! Please reply...