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Thread: A couple of dumb questions

  1. #1
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    A couple of dumb questions

    First, let me thank all of you experienced quilters who share your wisdom. I have learned soooooo much reading your advice and been inspired looking at your beautiful handiwork. So, I have a few questions ....What kind of thread is best for piecing? I am, of course, using 100% cotton fabric. There are so many threads out there - 100% cotton, cotton/polyester blends....etc. etc. Which is best for piecing?

    Second, Many of you suggest washing your fabric before piecing in case of bleeding colors and shrinkage. What about precut fabrics? I bought several charm packs & jelly rolls in red. I can see them bleeding all over the place, but I can't imaging washing & ironing all of them. If they shrink then they will be off measure, but if they bleed after piecing.....

    Thanks in advance for your words of wisdom.

  2. #2
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    Thread is one of thosse questions you will get a zillion answers for. Everyone has a favorite brand and a different opinion on cotton or polyester. I tried a few things suggested by different people until I found one I liked in price range I feel comfortable paying

    Many people wash things like charm packs by hand in the sink. It is a lot of work, but some feel it is worth it. I tend to not wash, but use many Color Catchers when I first was the quilt.

    As with everything in quilting, (and life) there are many methods to get to the end result. Everyone has to find a method that works for them.

  3. #3
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    welcome- and you will probably get lots of different answers because most things are a personal choice- there are no hard-fast rules when it comes to quilting
    first the thread- visit the Superior Threads web site. they have a free chart which you can print off that tells you about all the different types/weights of threads- what they are best used for and what needles to use with them- it is an invaluable resourse.
    i use Aurafil alot- some cotton threads and some poly blends and even silks for piecing- depends on the project- everyone has their preferences- as long as the thread is strong- the right color-(for piecing i normally use a neutral- light gray or cream for light fabrics, darker gray-taupe for darker fabrics) some people like to match colors with their fabrics.

    second- the fabric companies who market pre-cuts will tell you they do not expect you to pre-wash them before using-
    if you are worried about bleeding (usually only a real concern if reds, or handdyes) you can do a 'color test' on individual pieces- wet a white cloth or paper towel and rub it on the 'questionable' fabric- if color comes off on the cloth you have a bleeder- if none does you are safe-
    if you choose to pre-wash your pre-cuts there is lots of advice how to go about that- by hand in the sink, in a mesh laundry bag, ect. if you choose to not prewash you can always toss a 'color-catcher' into the first wash of the finished project for (insurance) incase anything does run a bit
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

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    I think with the thread it comes down to which one you like and find easy to work with. There is a disscussion on this board about thread and everyone had their own favorite. Washing fabric-if I buy yardage I wash it, jelly rolls etc. I dont. Color Cather is a great product to use with wahing your handiwork. Another thing about washing fabric,wash all you are using together or dont wash any, Don't use a combo.
    Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind see.
    mark Twain

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    ckcowl - thank you for the website. I will certainly read & print out. And all of you for the advice. I have spent quite a bit of money on my project & don't want to mess it up any more than necessary --- that elusive "scant 1/4 inch seam" is hard enough for me!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Hen3rietta's Avatar
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    My personal feeling is that I would save the small precuts, charms, jelly rolls, for items that will not be washed like wall hangings. For myself, I don't put anything into a quilt for use that hasn't been washed. I've had reds bleed before and it isn't nice. If you are putting so much effort and time into something, it's best to try to minimize any problems that may occur later. I know quilters who swear that color catchers will take care of the problem, so you can see that there are quite differing views on this subject.
    Diana

  7. #7
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    I like Aurifil the best. I really like the 50wt. It is so lightweight that it makes my piecing more accurate.
    I also never prewash precuts.
    DonnaR
    Grammy to Isaiah and Ruth

  8. #8
    Super Member joyce888's Avatar
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    Looks like you've already got a lot of good advice my two cents is Make sure your machine "likes" your thread. I had to switch brands when I bought my Pfaff.
    Joyce

  9. #9
    Super Member CorgiNole's Avatar
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    I piece using Prescencia 60/3. On the cone it seems to be pricey, but if you do the math, it is comparable with other threads when comparing $/inch. I can't get it locally so have mail ordered it. For piecing, you want neutral colors, you don't need to match your fabric colors, which is what I thought initially and consequently ended up with lots of thread in colors that will take a while before I need them. The 60/3 is a fine thread but also very strong. And makes it easy to sew a good scant quarter inch seam.

    I do prewash fabric. And for this reason, have not bought many precuts as I'm certain that I don't want to prewash and then press those. When I do use the ones I have, I probably won't prewash the precuts.

    Cheers, K

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