Friday, June 26, 2009

the monster in my closet

I love it when bloggers post their "worst sewing disaster ever" stories, don't you? I get a tiny dose of schadenfreude (love that word!), and I almost always learn a valuable lesson. So, I suppose it's my turn to reciprocate...

Let me introduce you to The Monster In My Closet!!

What could this huge lump of white stuff possibly be? You quilters out there will probably recognize it as a roll of batting. Yep, 50 (well, about 40 at this point) yards of super fluffy polyester batting. I've been putting off basting some quilts for weeks now, just because I didn't want to deal with The Monster. But I've got three Project Linus quilts all ready to go, so I couldn't put it off any longer.

Oh no, it's trying to escape!! No, actually it just got stuck in the doorway while I was trying to drag it out of the closet. I was laughing so hard, I had to stop and get a picture.

I so wish I had thought to take a picture of it when it was first delivered. I swear, it was only about 12" in diameter!! When I took off the plastic wrapper, it made this sssssssound... and started slowly expanding.... and expanding... I rolled off about 10 yards (enough for my first few PL quilts), and then wrangled the thing into the closet, where it continued to expand ever so slowly over the next couple of months... And here it is in all of its puffed-out glory!

So how did The Monster come to be in my closet? Well, I'm one of those people who sometimes jumps in with both feet without really knowing how to swim. I had made a goal of doing 12 Project Linus quilts this year, and I figured I'd probably make at least a few personal ones too, so I'll need LOTS of batting, right? Before even making my first quilt, I got on and took a look at their bulk batting selections. I read all the reviews ("perfect for quilting", "great batting!"), and settled on the this one. Half price and free shipping = $35 for 50 yards. Not bad, right?

Well, let me tell you, this batting is not much fun to sew with. It's not horrible, but it's definitely not even in the same league as something like Warm & Natural. It stretches when I'm basting, its puffiness makes the quilting harder (as a newbie, I sure don't appreciate that extra degree of difficulty!), and it sure does take up a LOT of space in my closet!! On the other hand, it's batting, and it works, and it does make cozy quilts. I'm not sure it's not worth it, considering that nicer batting is three times as expensive. But still, I wish I hadn't bought 50 yards of it, without trying some first! Especially considering the kicker - I can get batting for FREE at the monthly Project Linus meetings! The donated stuff is polyester too, but it's the nice flat stable stuff. Grrrr....

Oh well, live and learn. And gosh, I only have about 20 more quilts to go until I vanquish the monster!!!

Here are two Quick Strippie tops I whipped up last week. I love how the batting looks like a giant roll of paper towels!

After cutting off pieces for the three tops I had ready to go, I decided I should cut a few more while I had The Monster out. Now I have a stack of 6 precut pieces filling a corner of my office, and an only slightly smaller monster in my closet...


  1. This IS funny! At least it is semi-contained on a roll. I made quite a few quilts with that kind of batting before Warm and Natural and its variants were widely available. I also think it's harder to quilt with - but one good thing about it is that kids really like the puffiness.

    The strip quilts are great - and I really like that bottom cat print on the first quilt!

  2. Gosh you have been very busy! I do not tune in for a day and bam... 3 posts! well done with your purchases. About the batting. I have some of that, bought early on when I wasn't even quilting yet (I made a humpty dumpty costume and used that for the filling... needed several layers to get it egg-shaped and then it was soooo hot he never wore it at school as he threw it off, poor little mite....). I am now making babytoys for a charity and I use that for the filling. If you pull off little bits it makes excellent toy filling! Might make your monster shrink faster...

  3. This post was hilarious. Thanks so much for sharing. I have a roll of warm and natural in my closet. I never could have fit something like your monster in my closet though and still had my clothing in there! LOL

  4. Too funny!! If I were a child in your house, I'm sure I'd be scared of the monster!! And your quilts are so pretty!

  5. THat is hilarious, it looks like its following you out of the closet. :) Thanks for stopping by! -Allison