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Message Board > Quilters' Corner > quilt fabric vs. apparel fabric ( Moderated by Sharon1952)

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quilt fabric vs. apparel fabric
confused on the difference for use
lvs2sew
lvs2sew
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Date: 9/14/12 0:32 AM

Hello PR I've a question or two about quilting fabric. About 2 yrs ago I decided to try my sewing skills at making a quilt for my dad here it is My First Quilt I used apparel fabric at the time I was about 1 1/2 yrs into sewing and I didn't know what i know now that there is quilting and apparel fabrics. My question is what is the difference in the two? does it make a huge difference in the quilt? if you could give me any tips / suggestions would be great I am wanting to make some quilts for xmas this year and I want to get started * i should probably already have got started* thanks gals

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"My husband said if I buy any more (fabric) he would leave me - I'll miss him."

Franksdottir

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In reply to lvs2sew <<


Date: 9/14/12 2:12 AM

You can make a quilt out of any fabric you wish. Successful and beautiful quilts have been made of doubleknits, denim, t-shirt material, heavy suiting scraps.

That said, it is so much easier to make a quilt out of 100% cotton with a tight weave that it is much to be preferred. 100% cotton takes a crisp fold when ironed with a hot iron, it is easier to piece with, needles better than many other fabrics, and with a tight enough weave will make a better, longer-lasting quilt.

Good 100% cotton these days runs from about $4 (usually on sale) to $14. Cotton has been very high the last two years or so.

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quiltingwolf
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Date: 9/14/12 9:02 AM

And vice versa I have used quilting cottons for lightweight cool blouses. I prefer all natural fibers in clothing. And in apparel fabric hard to find unless you are willing to pay a mint. Another reason for quilting cottons is the final step, the actual quilting which would be quite hard through corduroy for etc.. When my husband was little someone made him a quilt out of leftover men's suiting fabric. Talk about warm. Our first couple apartments that quilt was a Godsend as we would constantly fighting for heat in those apartments.
-- Edited on 9/14/12 9:04 AM --

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Learn To Sew
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In reply to lvs2sew <<


Date: 9/14/12 11:43 AM

We have a blanket/quilt made from old jeans in the trunk of the car. It has come in handly many a time when stuck in snow in the parking lot, when moving bags of bark mulch in the back seat of my car and so forth. My DH bought it nearly 30 years ago.

So, you can make a quilt from anything you like. Just whatever makes you happy.

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I am a Quilter at heart. I love to play with fabrics, patterns and colors. Recently I have discovered I enjoy doing applique. I love making pictures. Using a sewing machine is much easier than counted cross stitch or oil painting for me. I enjoy landscape quilting as well. I am working on my first applique project in the spring of 2014.
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Miss Fairchild
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In reply to lvs2sew <<
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Date: 9/14/12 4:33 PM

Everyone's tips on here are right on, and I'd like to add another. Don't intermix fabric types in your quilt. For example, don't use 100% cotton with a poly/cotton blend. The blocks that you have made with the poly/cotton will stretch, when trying to press it next to a 100% cotton one. If you want to use apparel fabric, make sure it's the same type throughout your quilt.

How can you tell if it's 100% cotton or a blend? Do a burn test. Take a small narrow strip, about 1/2" wide and 4" long, light a match to it and burn it for a little bit. (make sure you have foil or a large plate placed under you.) Blow it out. (another good idea would be to place a bowl of water next to you to dip the burning fabric in if you need to.)

If there is a bead, and it looks like the fabric has melted, then it's a blend. If the fabric just burns, like paper, and no bead, it's 100% cotton.

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lvs2sew
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Date: 9/14/12 6:56 PM

thanks everyone i always try to use 100% cotton in my sewing projects once and awhile i use cotton blends i like to hit the clearnce racks to get mine with much success in what i find and love i have done the burn test and have a binder with fabrics i have tested to know for later use i was just wanting to make sure that there wasn't a * rule* lol per say in what fabric you use

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"My husband said if I buy any more (fabric) he would leave me - I'll miss him."

Franksdottir

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In reply to quiltingwolf <<


Date: 9/14/12 7:45 PM

Quote: quiltingwolf
And vice versa I have used quilting cottons for lightweight cool blouses. I prefer all natural fibers in clothing. And in apparel fabric hard to find unless you are willing to pay a mint. Another reason for quilting cottons is the final step, the actual quilting which would be quite hard through corduroy for etc.. When my husband was little someone made him a quilt out of leftover men's suiting fabric. Talk about warm. Our first couple apartments that quilt was a Godsend as we would constantly fighting for heat in those apartments.
-- Edited on 9/14/12 9:04 AM --

Good point. I made a lot of my children's clothes out of quilting cottons because of the natural fibers issue, but also because quilting cottons have wonderful designs, and can make adorable clothes.

DD used to help me choose patterns (I had the last word) and fabric for her clothes. (DS was not very interested.) Recently, her husband wanted me to make her a skirt with bacon on it to wear to picnics and barbeques, which I thought was really cute of him, so I bought the fabric. (Where he saw quilting cotton I do not know, she must have shown him because I showed her.)

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Barb

PortlandMaine
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Date: 9/14/12 11:48 PM

I mix fabric types in quilts -- I dont make complex blocks - so I dont have the probles that would happen ..

I also have made quilts with very heavy fabrics - Ive used a jeans needle to fmq those quilts -- those really heavy fabrics dont really need a thick batting - if one at all.

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sew2006
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Date: 9/15/12 0:20 AM

The other 2 things to consider when quilting is the batting (natural or polyester) and the thread used. Polyester is stronger so the thread can cut the cotton fabric. If polyester batting is used between 100% cotton in free motion quilting the batting will poke through in the back. Combination of fabrics could cause problems later with washing/ shrinkage. Quilts were originally made from scraps of recycled clothing.

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sew2006
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Date: 9/15/12 0:36 AM

The other 2 things to consider when quilting is the batting (natural or polyester) and the thread used. Polyester is stronger so the thread can cut the cotton fabric. If polyester batting is used between 100% cotton in free motion quilting the batting will poke through in the back. Combination of fabrics could cause problems later with washing/ shrinkage. Quilts were originally made from scraps of recycled clothing.

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Janome10001, Babylock ESG3, Brother ULT 2001, White 634D serger, Pfaff 1472, Singer featherweight, Singer 14T957Dc, Bernina FunLock 009DCC coverlock, Brother PQ1500S, Janome CP900.

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