Quilt Buying Guide
When it comes to country decorating, there's just no substitute for a real patchwork quilt. It becomes the instant focal point in any room, and provides a subconscious message of warmth and comfort. If you're a lover of country style you probably own a few patchwork quilts already. We use them on the bed, the wall, the sofa - anywhere! They're just what you need to create that cozy country cabin look.
Here's some general info on quilts, and some things to consider, if you're thinking of buying one.
What exactly is a patchwork quilt?
Well, a quilt is like a 3 layer fabric sandwich. The top layer is the pretty part. It starts with various small pieces of fabric, skillfully cut into different shapes and then sewn together to form one large piece of fabric. The bottom layer is usually made up of one solid or patterned piece of fabric. The center is the batting which can be made from cotton, polyfill or even wool. All three layers are joined together by sewing across the surface of the sandwich- this is the actual "quilting" part. Quilting can be done by hand, or by machine.
We are often asked why quilts vary so much in price.
The reason is related to a few different factors. The first is due to the intricacy of the pattern. For example, the Tea Cabin Quilt is a traditional Log Cabin quilt with lots of tiny pieces sewn together to create an intricate design. It would be more difficult to sew than a simpler design with larger fabric pieces, like the Sea Glass Quilt, for example. The Sea Glass Quilt is also made in the traditional Log Cabin pattern, but the scale of the pattern is much larger, requiring less labor to create.
Another factor is the grade of materials used. Higher quality quilts will use a softer grade of cotton with a higher thread count. The batting will be made from 100% cotton, and not polyfill. While we offer patchwork quilts in a variety of price ranges, please know that all of them are made with 100% cotton fabrics on both sides AND 100% cotton batting in the middle.
What you need to know about quilt care:
All of our quilts are machine washable- with a few words of caution. The best way to wash your quilt is at the laundromat. I know, no one likes to hear that! The reason is because their commercial washing machines have a different type of agitator, which is actually less traumatic to the quilt. Dry cleaning is not really recommended. As for drying, it is best to line dry or dry flat. That being said, let me tell you what we do (yes, we really DO use these products at home!) We wash our quilts in the home washer (front loader, gentle cycle only) and put them in the dryer for just a few minutes. We've never had a problem with this method. BUT we can't guarantee that this will be your experience because all washing machines are different. Also consider that a patchwork quilt is not the best choice if you like to wash your bed covering weekly. We would recommend a Wholecloth Quilt, or Duvet Cover if you want or need to wash your bedding set frequently- they will hold up better to frequent machine washing and drying.
Some thoughts on matching
Please don't hesitate you request swatches of the quilts. We know that it is hard to choose based on a computerized image, so by all means let us send you a swatch. You'll see that most of the quilts are made up of lots of different fabrics, so they can easily be coordinated with various other pieces. If your favorite quilt does not have a matching bedskirt available, don't despair. We can usually recommend a good substitute. And after all, country decorating is not all about matching. (Just our opinion, of course).
You'll find that our quilts are very generously sized. Many of our customers automatically "size up" and order a quilt that is designed for a larger bed. Clearly they've been burned by skimpy bedding in the past! We get a fair amount of them back as returns because the quilt turns out to be too large. We suggest that you measure your bed or your current bed covering for comparison if you are accustomed to "sizing up". You might just be pleasantly surprised to find that our quilts are big enough to actually cover your bed!
Most of our quilts are available in the standard King, Queen, and Twin sizes plus the hard to find Cal King/ Luxury King size. The Cal King / Luxury King quilt is a whopping 120" x 105" - large enough for any California King bed, or a standard king bed with a thick mattress.
So many quilts coming and going...
Just a final thought to consider as you shop for quilts- a new style is always just around the corner. These days, quilt manufacturers change patterns quickly. They premiere new designs seasonally, and retire older quilts on a regular basis. This can be good and bad. It's good because a fresh new look is always on the horizon. But it can be bad for those of us who like to think long and hard about our decorating choices. Quilts are sometimes here today, and gone tomorrow! No sales pitch- just a little friendly advice from one quilt lover to another : )
If you should need more info on anything, please let us know. We're here to help you find that special quilt!