Pg 13: More Than One
For those who have made one of our quilt kits, and for those who have not yet, we have three recommendations:
Gone are the days when you had only one sleeping bag. In fact, many of us do not even have one sleeping bag, because like Jenny and me, you now sleep in a quilt when outdoors.
Nevertheless, Jenny and I do not have only one quilt. We have several, (dozens in fact) and each is customized according to the application. For example, we have quilts with only a single-layer of insulation for relatively warm nights, double-layer quilts for colder nights, double-layer Alpine quilts for the mountains, and even triple-layer quilts for kayaking in the Arctic.
We haven't used a zipped-up sleeping bag in 25 years, or blankets either. We think our quilts work much better than sleeping bags, and better than blankets too. So whether we are home or in the wilds, we use our quilts.
In the processes of making so many quilts, we refined the design for performance and efficiency, and simplified it for ease of construction. This was many years ago. And several years ago, when we began selling our quilt kits, we started buying our materials in bulk, and of course we are passing the savings on to our customers.
All our personal quilts have been on lengthy adventures, and only two came back shot. For one we used light-loft, and it went flat as a pancake. But even that quilt is still in use. Our pet macaw uses it for her play quilt. (She goes underneath and turns upside down, and pretends she is sleeping like us. Or she roots around beneath it pretending it is her nest.) The quilt we used while rowing the Atlantic came back destroyed, because as an experiment we didn't install the quilting yarns. Not a good idea.
Except for those two quilts, all our others have returned home with no significant damage - saving for a slight loss of loft when first stuffing them in their stowbags - which is normal.
Backing up even further, we used to use sleeping bags made of goose down, (un-zipped and spread over us like a quilt) and without exception they returned home from our lengthy trips with far greater loss of loft. So we had to buy a new down bag each year at $350 a pop. This was mainly why, in the early 1990's, we started making our own quilts of synthetic insulation. They were far cheaper and we could easily customize them to suit.
Nevertheless, we still prefer to start each trip with a new quilt. Why not, when they are relatively cheap and easy for us to make?
So our first recommendation
is that everybody have more than one quilt. That way you can match your quilts to the trip for the most efficient system.
Our second recommendation is that you use the quilts also at home. Maybe you would enjoy sleeping under a quilt on your bed, or for use as a comforter in bed or on the couch. For summer you might use a light quilt, and in winter a thicker one.
You can easily customize your quilt kit for use at home. For example, you can make it wider and a bit longer, and you could omit the taper in the leg area, and omit the foot pocket too - so that the quilt will cover your bed and lay flat. That way, you can sleep with the sheet over you (or not) underneath the quilt. Very warm and cozy! The quilt also is lighter than blankets, so like us you may find that you sleep better without that weight of the blankets pressing down on you.
And for those who have made one of our quilt kits, making another one would be a snap. So you could even sew one for each family member.
If you have children, they might use their quilts also for camping in the back yard. This would be a good way to introduce them to the joys of camping in nature. That's how I started out.
Our final recommendation for today is that everyone have at least one Ray-Way quilt per family member for emergencies. Chances are you would never be called to evacuate your home, but you might think about being prepared in any case. Blankets are not nearly as warm as our quilts.
Also, we recommend for those living in areas of heavy and cold winters, that each person carry a quilt in their trunk or back seat. The back seat of your car might not be too roomy for stretching out, but your Ray-Way quilt with two layers of Alpine insulation would plenty warm, even with the windows rolled part way down for ventilation.