Sometimes referred to as wadding, quilt batting is an essential mainstay when it comes to quilting. But don’t let the name fool you – it’s quite a simple process really. All you do is fill in the layers of your quilt with some sort of material (such as cotton, polyester and wool) in order to add some puff and warmth to your quilted creation. Specifically, you’ll be insulating your quilt through batting. Think of it almost akin to stuffing a pillow with feathers!
Now here’s the catch: the types of batting you can use for your quilt are endless. Not only can they vary hugely in size and price but when it comes to the type of material, your choices will outnumber the stars in the night’s sky. From traditional cotton to even bamboo of all things and to odd sounding phrases like fusible and needle punch, it’s easy to see why anyone would be intimidated by all this.
This is where our list comes in – we totally understand how confusing quilt batting can be, so we’ve compiled some of the most popular options out there. If you stick with our list and take your pick, you absolutely cannot go wrong.
Best Quilt Battings of 2020
1. Fairfield X81B Extra Loft Quilt Batting, 81″ x 96″, White
For those of you working on larger quilting projects then Fairfield’s X81B would be a more than sensible pick. Weighing just barely 3.6 oz. per square yard at a total quilting distance of 2″ to 4″, whether you’re working with entire camper beds or full-sized beds, all your needs will be accommodated for here. With its hugely comfortable, airy and light material, you’ll not only be able to work it easily with machine quilting but even of those traditionalists among you, hand quilting will be a breeze here.
Furthermore, the fact that quilts are often washed isn’t unaccounted for. Thanks to its bonded polyester, even during machine washing, you won’t have to worry about your quilt losing its shape. It will be retained even after the most rigorous of washing!
Finally, at its modest weight of just 1.29 pounds despite its huge dimensions sitting at 18.2 x 8.8 x 8 inches, there truly is huge value when it comes to Fairfield’s X81B.
2. Fairfield Quilter’s 80/20 80/20-Queen Size
Another high-quality product by Fairfield is their Quilter’s 80/20, a perfect product if you’re working with quilts that are sized similarity to queen beds or comforters. With its hugely light weight despite its dimensions of 8.5 x 8.5 x 20 inches, you can rest assured that this particular batting will be suitable for all the seasons in the year from winter to summer while imparting that unmistakably traditional flat look to your quilted creation.
Further, if you tend to use your machine for quilting quite often then you have met your match – your needle will glide through this batting almost just like how a hot knife would to butter. And even if you are a hand quilter then don’t worry – stitching will still be just as smooth an experience here.
This is all of course because of its unique 80% cotton and 20% polyester composition that creates a breathable and airy material that will keep just about anyone comfortable.
3. Warm Company Natural Cotton Batting Queen Size
Another popular option amongst quilter’s is ironically, a company that well lives up to its name: Warm Company. By far one of the finest cotton battings in the market right now, their X108 will impress just about anyone looking for a pure 100% US-grown cotton material. Bearding and bunching will absolutely be a non-issue when it comes to this product. It’s a tiny bit heavier than the alternate products above standing at a little under 2 lbs. but we assure you that this difference is miniscule.
One highlight is how this product was created by punching countless needles though its polymer fibers which almost entirely prevents any migrations, tears and creeps.
Through this, a hugely flexible yet sturdy material has been created, composed out of 87.5% cotton and 12.5% polymer fibers that allows needles to glide through effortlessly while ensuring that the fibers are strongly linked with each other without the need for any additional adhesives.
4. Warm Company Batting Warm & White Cotton Batting
Another purely 100% American cotton mainstay also produced by Warm Company is their White Cotton Batting. Again, produced by the highest quality American cotton, this lightweight product weighing at 6.1 ounces will provide you a huge bang despite its unassuming size. It absolutely is ideal for quilting as it contains no resin, glue and will not separate or bunch at the slightest thanks to its meticulous manufacturing progress.
All sorts of fabric will also strongly cling to this batting, so you don’t have to worry too much about shifting, migrations and bearings.
Now for those of you who are trying to build a more antique aesthetic, this product will be perfect. And even if this is not your thing, you can opt out of it by simply prewashing it! Though do note that this batting will shrink down by approximately 3% upon its first wash. Nevertheless, with a batting like this, you probably wish you wouldn’t have to get up every morning.
5. Hobbs Batting Heirloom 80/20 Cotton/Poly Queen Size Quilt Batting
Created out of a delicate blend between 80% cotton and 20% polyester, Hobbs’s Batting Heirloom assures its customers that when it comes to this batting, quality follows. After all, this particular product is produced alongside Harriet Hargrave herself! Offering a wonderful quilting experience for both hand and machine quilters, this needle-punched batting coupled with its resin bonding easily makes this product one of the most durable yet adaptable materials out there right now.
All this is thanks to its use of both long-staple cotton fibres along with some of the polyester in the market.
Though some reports indicate a little surprise upon finding the batting a little thinner than expected despite its durability. This may either be a good or bad thing depending on what you’re looking for so don’t forget to keep this in mind. And again, if you’re not trying to get a more antique aesthetic with the Hobbs, then don’t forget to prewash it!
6. Angel Crafts and Sewing Cotton Batting for Quilts: Purely Natural All Season Quilt Batting by the Roll
Yet another hugely popular and universally loved brand and product is Angel Crafts’ Cotton Batting for Quilts. With totally natural materials using some of the highest-quality cotton in the market, not only is this batting ideal for quilting but for pillows and upholstery projects as well. And again, for both machine and hand quilters, you’ll have a field day when you experience first-hand how easy it is to work with this product.
With its gentle, soft and warm feel, you’ll also find this product suitable for the bedroom or anywhere where you intend to take some comfortable sleeps. Or if that’s not your thing, wall hanging, and t-shirts are both equally suitable uses for this batting.
Again, just like the best products in the market, this batting will absolutely not shift nor bunch nor even separate due to the way it was made. Additionally, no tedious preshrinking is required here to get the best out of the product.
7. Fusible Fleece by Pellon: 45″x60″
If you’re looking for a batting that’s hugely flexible and is made out of 100% polyester, then the Fusible Fleece by Pellon will be your best option by far. Ideal for all sorts of quilting projects and home decor, you’ll find this highly flexible yet soft product ideal for home decor and crafts amongst other things.
It’s relatively small in comparison to the other products on our list however, given it’s modest weight of 0.32 ounces and product dimensions of 1 x 11 x 13 inches, though don’t let this distract you from the quality of the Fusible Fleece.
And upon first usage, we’ve found absolutely no issue with the batting properly sticking to the fabric thanks to its build. And even when it comes to retaining its shape, it will absolutely stay steadfast to whatever quilting project you choose to use it with. All this combined with its hugely affordable price makes this an attractive product for both total novices and the more experienced quilters out there.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What exactly do quilt battings do?
Many things actually. From just making a quilt look more appealing by adding that additional puff to insulating a quilt against the cold to even giving a quilted creation a more antique or modern appearance, if we truly wanted to talk about all its specific uses, we could go on forever but this sentiment sums it up concisely.
Are quilt battings a must-have for my quilting projects?
A seminal question – to use or not to use? Surprisingly this question is more complicated than meets the eye and entirely depends on who you ask! The more classical, orthodox quilters out there may balk at the suggestion of using batting – after all, quilts historically did not use any batting or as they were termed back then, summer quilts.
Conversely, the more modern quilter will most certainly take full advantage of all types of batting to add an extra dimension of comfort to their creations. So, the answer to this question is a resounding it depends. Specifically, on your own specific preferences and what you’re trying to create.
How do I decide which quilt batting is the best for me?
Alright there’s no one size fits all answer to this seemingly unassuming question, but you should always keep in mind the following three factors: budget, loft and size.
When it comes to your budget, the type of batting you opt for will directly impact how much your wallet is going to hurt down the line. Cheaper materials like polyester will be kinder in this case whereas more luxurious materials like cotton and wool will set you back a little further financially.
Loft simply refers how thick or thin or fluffy a quilt batting is. You should go for minimal loft if you’re looking to make a flat quilt which will be better to bring out the intricate details of your piercing. The same applies if you’re quilting by hand as opposed to machine. Conversely the opposite applies if you’re trying to bring out the quilting lines – a fluffier and thicker aesthetic will be produced if you go for a higher loft.
Finally, when it boils down to size, it entirely depends on the nature of your quilting project. Trying to make something large like a king-sized quilt? Then go for a product that comes with a large batting size – you’ll need the additional materials to bring you creation to reality. On the flipside, you’ll probably be spending more so don’t forget to account for this: bigger isn’t always better.
Which type of material is the best out there?
Your choice of material is probably the biggest factor you should account for when looking for a quilt batting. To sum this up as concisely as possible, the main materials out there are the following:
Cotton Batting – Probably one of the most popular picks out there, with cotton you’ll get a material that is warm, somewhat thick and soft to touch.
Polyester Batting – Fantastic for filling in quilts and retaining shapes and especially common in bedding projects, for what it promises, it doesn’t detract too much from its light weight.
Wool Batting – Similar to cotton, wool is mainly used due to its unforgettable warmth and softness. And much like polyester, it has the potential to retain its shape and is a joy to work on with either machines or hands.
Bamboo Batting – A relative newcomer to the batting market, made out of a 50-50 mixture between cotton and bamboo, this material is great for machines and produces a lightweight and porous product.