In our latest blog post, the Fabrics Galore team continues our focus on the area of patchwork and quilting. This week, we turn our attention to using batik fabrics to help complete your favourite quilting projects.
Batik Fabrics are hugely popular among quilters, as they can effectively enhance your pattern by evolving a bland design and transforming it into an eye-catching, vibrant quilting project.
So, to help those that want to create their dream quilting project but aren’t fully confident about mastering the process, our team have provided a quick guide on the quilting procedure and show you some of the newest batik fabrics that we have added to our growing stock.
How is batik fabric made?
The batik fabric craze originated from Indonesia and consists of a quite unique process that is completed one hundred percent by hand. Batik is a wax-resist dyeing technique that allows you to produce some wonderfully creative designs, hence why it has become so popular across the globe.
To make a batik fabric, you select the areas of your cloth wish you wish to block out by applying hot wax to these sections. Then, by dyeing your fabric, the parts that you had previously waxed will remain the same colour whilst the rest of the cloth succumbs to the dye.
This process is called ‘resisting’ and can be repeated until you accomplish your desired colour.
How to quilt batik fabric
Before you start your batik fabric quilting project, it is crucial to make sure that you have everything you need to complete the task. Check out our list of quilting essentials below:
- Your chosen batik fabric
- Your backing fabric
- Safety pins
- A seam guide or template
- Sewing machine
- Rotary ruler
Preparing your fabrics
Once you have everything you need, you can then begin preparing your fabric. This consists of firstly preshrinking your batik fabric, to ensure that it doesn’t shrink once you have finished. It is also important that you pre-wash your batik fabric to fix the colour; because of the way batiks are made there may be some excess dye to wash out. It is also a good idea to add some salt to the wash as this will ‘fix’ the dye for future washing.
Now if you are creating a patchwork quilt top, once you have washed the fabrics they are ready to be cut into your patchwork pieces and sewn together to create the patchwork effect.
After this you must press both your batik fabric and backing fabric, before laying out the backing fabric wrong side up on a flat surface.
Once you have smoothed out your backing fabric, you can then lay out your batting on the top of the backing fabric, before laying your batik fabric on top of the batting to create a ‘batting sandwich’ if you will.
After smoothing all 3 layers once again to ensure that there are no wrinkles, use your safety pins to baste the three layers together. These safety pins will be removed as you complete your quilting project. Remember not to attempt sewing over a safety pin!
Quilting your batik fabric
Finished preparing your fabric? Great! Now you can begin creating your masterpiece.
Firstly, you must create a line that runs to the corner of your fabric at a 45-degree angle by using a rotary ruler. If your fabric appears to be a little too tight, set your stitch length to a slightly longer length and sew a line of stitches on the line that you had marked out previously.
To help you sew lines of even length, using a sewing machine guide can help. The distance of the lines will depend on the size of your project.
Continue the process until you have quilted enough fabric to complete your creation, and then crisscross your stitching by quilting from the opposite direction.
There are a few extra tips to help you make your batik quilting creation stand out, such as quilting in curved lines, using decorative stitches and making use of contrasting threads.
For more assistance on how to perfect the art of quilting, check out this useful video on quilting for beginners by the guys at Create & Craft TV!
Browse the ultimate range of batik fabrics for quilting
There’s a lot of excitement around the Fabrics Galore HQ at the moment, as we have recently received a variety of beautiful batik cottons from India. Our Indian supplier is the 3rd generation in his family who has provided these gorgeous fabrics. He sources his materials from the same village in southern India each year, and the prints are in fact so exclusive he will not reveal where the village is located!
To explore the range of batik fabrics that we have just added to our stock, head over to our newest fabrics range now.
Or if you would rather check out the complete batik fabrics collection that we supply at Fabrics Galore, you can do so by taking a look at our dedicated cotton batik fabrics page.
Want to browse the entire fabrics collection at Fabrics Galore? If so, visit our online fabrics store today!