It's no secret that I love working with Moda Toweling. Stitching embroidery or appliqué on it, fringing the ends to make a table runner, sewing it into decorative cushions, making bags and finding creative and interesting ways to configure the stripes in quilts. But, what actually is Moda toweling?
The name, toweling, can be a little misleading. Here in Australia, 'toweling' is often used to refer to the fabric used to make bath towels and bath robes. That fabric is called Terry Toweling or in America, Terry Cloth. The toweling I like to use is not the fluffy kind from your bath towel, it is closer to the kind of fabric used in tea towels. To save confusion I call it Moda Toweling, because Moda is the only company, that I know of, that makes the toweling on a continuous roll. This means that you can purchase any length you like, leading to all sorts of creative possibilities; and that is why I like using it.
Moda Toweling is 100% cotton and comes on a roll with the edges already hemmed. Until recently it was always 16" wide. The most recent range that I have designed for Moda, named Rock Pool, is available on rolls 18" wide and hemmed and also 60" on bolts. The edges of the wider fabric is not hemmed. The addition of these extra widths to the toweling family, opens up even more scope for project possibilities. I have used the 60" wide widths on quilt backs, tablecloths, fringed throws, chair covers and footstools, just to name a few.
Moda toweling is a heavier weight fabric than regular patchwork cotton. It is still very soft and comes in a variety of different textures. Despite the thicker texture it is still able to be used in patchwork quilts, I find it best to prewash because it does shrink a little more than regular patchwork cottons. When sewing with toweling I always use my walking foot, this helps the slightly heavier weight fabric to pass through the machine easily and without stretching. If you are cutting toweling on the diagonal, i suggest you use a little spray starch to hold it stable and prevent fraying.
The extra weight of the fabric lends itself very well to appliqué and stitchery. No need to add a stabiliser to the back of your fabric, so it is a pleasure to stitch on.
Moda toweling comes in a variety of different stripe patterns, colours and textures. All the stripes are woven, not printed on the fabric. this results in the stripes being mostly straight. There are often slubs, or thicker pieces, in the weave which adds to the character and texture of the fabric.
I have numerous patterns available and a new book, Farmhouse Fresh, published by Martingale, containing projects for Moda Toweling. I am constantly developing new fabrics, new projects and new uses for toweling. I hope you will come along on my toweling journey and try some stitching with Moda Toweling in the near future.
All patterns, book and toweling fabrics are available to purchase on my website. If you have a local quilt store, please check if they carry Moda toweling and patterns . We love to support our local quilt shops.