Thursday, October 11, 2018

The Inside Scoop on Insul Bright Thermal Batting

Oven mitts, hot pads, and casserole covers are popular projects using Insul-Bright Thermal Batting from The Warm Co. We started using Insul-Bright a few years ago and discovered the real scoop on the product. We do love it but there are some tips you should know.
The biggest tip is really ironic ---- don't iron or press it too much. We discovered this by pressing a layer of Insul-Bright onto cotton fabric during one of our sewing projects. Then we pressed them -- mostly out of habit to simply press everything. With a really hot iron, the Insul-Bright seems to shrink up a bit causing the cotton fabric to distort or ripple.
Insul-Bright reflects heat back from a its layer of metalized polyester film sandwiched between layers of polyester fibers. It's meant for holding onto hot things from the oven for rather brief periods of time, not the firm, intense heat of an iron. So if you need to iron/press any part of a project containing Insul-Bright, go lightly and it will solve the problem. 

These oven mitt panels have fusible web on the back side. Fuse them to the Insul-Bright lightly -- 3 to 4 seconds per spot.



The other curious thing about Insul-Bright is one layer is not enough to protect you from the heat source. Even they say so. You can use one layer of Insul-Bright on the 'back of hand' and 'thumb side' of an oven mitt, but in the 'mouth' part (the part of an oven mitt that comes into contact with a heat source and protects you from it), you should always use two layers. The Warm Co. recommends using one layer of Insul-Bright and one layer of cotton batting like Warm 'n Natural Cotton Batting. It is fine to do so, but when writing my patterns, it is too much of a hassle to write in this extra feature. So in the case of an oven mitt, I just have you cut two layers of Insul-Bright and it works fine. 
You might ask 'why not use two layers on all panels?' --- well, it simply gets too think to sew all the layers together.

Some other helpful suggestions. 1-Insul-Bright does not have a right or wrong side. 2-You can pre-wash it, but I never do and it seems fine. It does wash well inside your oven mitt if you choose to wash them. 3-You can not use Insul-Bright for microwave projects and is too noisy for clothing. 4- But the noisy part of Insul-Bright can make interesting stuffed toys or soft books for babies. 5- Use zig zag stitching for sewing layers together -- it smashes down the edges so the seams allowances are easier to work with, especially if you are sewing bias binding around the edges. 6-Set your cut oven mitt panels on the sheet of Insul-Bright and use the panels as templates to cut out your Insul-Bright.

Use the oven mitt panels as templates instead of the paper templates -- a much simpler and neater method.