From the beginning, I wanted Delightfully Quilted to have a high standard for quality. I know quilts can go through a lot, and I wanted to make sure my quilts could handle it.
Testing, testing, testing
One of the first steps in starting Delightfully Quilted was testing.
I tested fabrics from many different manufacturers looking at how durable the weave was and what their reputation for colorfastness was, so that the colors were unlikely to fade over time.
I also tested battings (or inside loft) for look, warmth, and weight. I considered which battings would be best for the use. While I don’t always use a particular batting, the general guidelines I used are below:
• For baby quilts, I wanted something that was warm, breathable, and light weight so that the baby wouldn’t overheat, and for ‘snuggle factor.’ An 80% Cotton/ 20% polyester blend is perfect for this.
•For crib quilts I wanted something that would be beautiful, heavy-weight, and warm, so that your toddler or smaller child would be comfortable at night year-round. The 80% cotton/20% wool blend is my choice for this- it is breathable, but the wool provides nice insulation which is warming in winter and has a cooling effect in warmer seasons. It is also beautiful after being top quilted.
• For my traditional quilts, 100% premium cotton batting is perfect for warmth, and because it creates that gorgeous traditional ‘crinkled’ look after washing.
• For my modern-style quilts, I used either the cotton-polyester or cotton-wool blend batting.
• I also wanted a more ‘natural’ option- so I selected a 100% organic cotton batting for my Organic Cotton quilts.
Thread went through lots of testing, too. I needed a thread that would be colorfast to reduce fading, 3-strands instead of 2 for increased strength in piecing, and 100% cotton, instead of synthetic, whenever possible to reduce ecological impact.
I chose a 60-weight (thinner) thread for top piecing to help with accuracy, and a 40-weight or 30-weight (thicker) thread in top quilting to emphasize the design.
To test batting, I made a stack of “test swatches” to see how the various types of batting felt, looked, washed, and how easy or hard they were to work with.
All the testing made sure that I selected battings that would make beautiful, long-lasting quilts.
My Suppliers / Materials Brands
After all the testing, I found that these suppliers would provide the high quality materials I needed to create long-lasting, durable quilts:
FOR FABRICS I selected Robert Kaufman Fabrics and Windham Fabrics as the suppliers for most of my quilts. For my organic cotton quilts, I typically use Birch Organic Fabrics.
FOR BATTING I selected Hobbs Batting.
FOR THREAD I use Persenica and Mettler.
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