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Do you need batting for a blue jean quilt?

Hey Yawl,

I am piecing a blue jean quilt. The jean fabric is pretty heavy and I have decided to use flannel to back it.  Do I need batting or will it be too heavy? I've read a lot of things about this on the internet, but I need advice from my expert neighbors.  What should I do?





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Comment by AidaCJ/NH on June 8, 2013 at 3:24pm

I made a denim quilt 6 years ago, I did not put any batting, but used flannel for the backing, and just machine quilted around the seams since the quilt was made of 6" denim squares and 9-patch squares. It was heavy but the recipient said it was perfect for all seasons.  I also made a denim and upholstery fabric quilt and just put flannel backing and just simple straight stitches for point to point on the squares.  For machine quilting I used long stitches.

Comment by Jodi Cramer on June 8, 2013 at 1:56pm

A friend and I made a pieced king sized jean quilt with a flannel back several years ago. We used a light weight sheet blanket rather than a batting. We thought it would give it some stability, which it did. It was VERY heavy, but like Prairie Quilter's, it was extra warm. My friend used it in her horse/camper trailer. We tied it rather than quilt it. Even so, it was difficult to work with as it was so heavy But it was very durable. Good luck with yours.

Comment by Prairie Quilter Jan/NE on June 8, 2013 at 4:54am

I made a twin sized, pieced, denim quilt similar to yours (mine was made up of 6" patches) with a flannel back.  I did use batting, but it was tied, not machine quilted.  It was definitely a utilitarian quilt.  It was heavy in comparison to cotton quilts, but that actually served my purpose.  It was to be used in the sleeper of a semi and needed to be extra warm.  (I guess I equate heaviness with warmth and maybe that's just all in my head.)  :D   I think they use it for a picnic quilt now.  It is over 20 years old now and has held up well.  

I have heard of folks who don't use batting with denim quilts, and I've heard of folks who have used flannel as the layer of batt (like what Debbie Snyder said), and then there's me who went ahead and used a regular batt.  (And knowing my limited level of quilting knowledge and skills back then, I probably used a high loft Mountain Mist poly-batt.  Go figure.)  

Let us know what you decide and how it works out with the machine quilting.

Comment by Debra Miller on June 7, 2013 at 11:08pm
If I were making this, I would put a thin fusible batt or fleece on the backing flannel. Then sandwich with the pieced jean top. Since you are doing the quilting yourself, do simple light quilting. Good luck! Can't wiat to see it finished.
Comment by Debbie Snyder/WA on June 7, 2013 at 7:52pm

Well, it's been 20+ years but as I recall I used a layer of flannel in place of batting.  My jean quilt was queen size and already too heavy for batting.  I would make a "jean" hot pad as a test to see what you like and you can also test out how much quilting you'll want to use.  Good luck..

Comment by June Johnson/Wi on June 7, 2013 at 7:48pm

Will be a beautiful quilt.  I have not made a denim one but understand your dilemma. 

Comment by Quilt Man on June 7, 2013 at 7:17pm

@Michelle K..I will be quilting it on my HSM..it is about 65X75.

Comment by Michelle K on June 7, 2013 at 6:43pm

Are you sending it to be long arm quilted or are you doing the quilting?  I would  imagine, that batting might make it softer, but also heavier.  I would recommend that you send it out to someone who has done a jean quilt before because of the density of the denim, if you are not doing it yourself.  Good luck.  it look very nice.  Great job!

Comment by Janet/MO on June 7, 2013 at 6:30pm

I have personally never made a blue jean quilt; however, I have heard from people who have that they did not use a batting. 

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