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Message Board > Beginner's Forum > :blush: batting - cotton vs acrylic vs polyester ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

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:blush: batting - cotton vs acrylic vs polyester
limer
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Subject: batting - cotton vs acrylic vs polyester Date: 11/17/12 2:59 PM

I want to make the Kenneth King version of a personal body form [Threads, July 2012]. Usually, when looking up how-to's on padding a dress form, you're told to buy cotton batting.

Is there a reason for this? Would it matter if I used acrylic or polyester instead? The acrylic one comes in a bag, the cotton and polyester ones are on a roll [they are in a sheet form], though I could get polyester in a bag, too [ie it's loose-like, not in a sheet form].

Also, could someone please explain to me when it is appropriate to use acrylic, polyester, or cotton? Thank you.
-- Edited on 11/17/12 2:59 PM --

GwenH
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Date: 11/17/12 6:24 PM

I'm absolutely no authority on batting, but my guess is cotton batting is specified for the body form because it is more solid and has only slight give, more like a human body than acrylic or polyester batting.

Miss Fairchild
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Date: 11/17/12 7:54 PM

poly batting is a high loft batting, meaning that it has a lot of air in it and might not give you the firmness you need to pad your form. the acrylic batting of which you speak is for pillows; even more loft, depending on how much fluff you want in your pillows. I've used poly batting on a dress form and found I had to use more just to get the form to pad correctly. Save your money and buy cotton the first time; cotton is denser and will conform to your shape more..

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limer
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Date: 11/17/12 9:20 PM

Thank youThat makes sense. I don't always think of polyester as stretchy, so that never occurred to me.

limer
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Date: 11/17/12 9:41 PM

Thank you for explaining each one Cotton it is! lol.
Truthfully, cotton is more expensive than the other two [2x as much as poly and more compared to acrylic], and I was wondering if it would matter which I used, and I haven't figured out how much I might need, yet. Thanks again!

Kenneth King used fusible quilt batting, is that best? I would assume the batting would move around even less if I can find and use fusible batting, but I wonder if there is a downside [maybe cost?].

The fabric store I'm going to is far, and I'm trying to plan as best as possible.

SandiMacD
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Date: 11/18/12 7:48 PM

Never know what gems are lurking! Thanks for solving the mystery of cotton vs poly batting. I never knew! Now I know how to choose.

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Miss Fairchild
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Date: 11/18/12 8:20 PM

Fusible batting is nice because you can iron it onto your dress form. I saw an article in an old Threads magazine where a woman made a dress form from a fitting shell of a woman. She used cotton upholstery batting, and pinned it in place. Then she fused interfacing over the whole lot to hold it all down.

The reason why poly is much cheaper than cotton is because it's made from plastic; cotton is a plant. Why not use parts of an old blanket? Back in the 70's there were knit acrylic blankets and they made great batting for quilts and coats.

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limer
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Date: 11/26/12 1:20 AM

Thank you again, Miss Fairchild! I hadn't realized you had replied back again.

I couldn't find fusible cotton [only fusible polyester], but I got a 50%cotton-50%bamboo batting for $4.39/yd. Thank you for telling me about that Threads article [do you happen to know which issue? - it's okay if you don't]. That is a great idea. I think I'll try that.
I don't have many blankets... And I'm not sure if I went into a thrift store that I would recognize that it is acrylic... but I suppose the point is that if the batting doesn't stretch too much, then it's great for padding a dress form? Thanks again

MariaESchneider
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Date: 12/1/12 3:22 PM

The cotton will outlast the poly by a long shot. I use it in quilting (I get it online). The poly not only is fluffier it isn't consistent over time--some fluff will flatten and some will get fluffy/fuzzy. For quilting I use what is called a needle batting so it's very flat and firm. It doesn't fray or separate. I think Hancocks may have a cotton batting, but I'm not certain. It can be hard to find and it is more expensive, but I have much better luck using it on my projects!

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