I’ll admit, I’m a devoted admirer of quilting, but don’t have a lot of practical knowledge. Mine is the sincere admiration of a person who wants to take beautiful quilts home and hang them on the wall as art, but who has no real practical knowledge, beyond the extremely basic, of how quilts are made. I am however, as many of you know, all about education, although in this case I’m hoping it will be you sharing some knowledge with me (not that you don’t always do that) instead of the other way around. My specific interest is in the types of backing or stabilizer that quilters use when they create, if I even have the terms right.
I guess the first question I have would be about the terminology. I see the word backing used to refer to the material that comprises the underside of the quilt, the side that would lie on the bed. Then there is the term batting. From what I’ve read, batting goes inside the quilt and helps determine its weight and warmth, and then is covered by the backing. What I would call backing or embroidery stabilizer doesn’t even come into the equation, as far as I can tell, unless you plan to embroider squares or designs for your quilt. Am I correct about that?
Finally, from what I understand, there are two basic types of quilting, hand quilting and machine quilting. Hand quilting is sewing the area to be quilted by hand. Machine quilting, which would be, I would think, where the stabilizer would come in, involves using a sewing machine or long arm quilting machine to create your quilt. I’m not sure, however, if you can embroider a quilt top all in one piece, or if you embroider portions or squares first and then piece them together or if it can be done either way.
If you’re wondering why I’m asking all these questions, it’s really some exploratory research to see if EnMart should or could start offering supplies for quilters. We know that quilters already use Iris thread, so it seemed a natural fit to start adding some other supplies. I’m just trying to gather some information as to what we might want to offer and if offering quilting supplies would be a good fit. If you quilt and you have any opinions to offer, I’d love to hear them.