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Thread: frequently washed quilt

  1. #1
    Member sallywag's Avatar
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    Question frequently washed quilt

    Does anyone have any tips on making a child's quilt that will be washed frequently. Should I machine stitch or tie? Should I make wider seams (.5")? Any help would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    Machine quilting is much sturdier than tying. The closer the quilting, the sturdier the quilt.

  3. #3
    Super Member Sierra's Avatar
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    I have 13 grandchildren and some experience with quilts that have been used to drag someone around the house, made into tents, wrestled on... treated pretty hard. The only problems that came up are the two where the mama washed them every other week and after 5 or 6 years they started showing a lot of wear; and the family with the new puppy! :>( The others are still doing well. Here are my tips:

    Give the mama instructions: Spray the bad spots and use delicate cycle only (or handwash cycle); never regular cycle! (front loader washers are OK on regular cycle because they don't pull like agitator washers do). Dry in the dryer on slightly lower than regular heat and take out just before really dry... they will be fluffy, not stiff, that way and be totally dry by the time the kids go to bed. Overdrying makes everything badly wrinkled.

    Make the binding especially strong: use bias binding whether you make it yourself or not... it makes it so the edge doesn't involve just one or two threads... and will last longer. I'd advise making it yourself because you can make the binding wider that way.... think little hands grabbing it and pullling.

    Yes, quilting lines that are close together make for a stronger quilting but it also makes it less soft. Even the ones the kids drag each other around the house on their hard wood floors are doing OK and the quilting is about 4" and 6" apart (check your batting to see what they recommend).

    Make both sides interesting. I thought the car side would be a winner with one of my grandsons and was delighted to see vintage "love bugs" displayed on top of his bed only to find out that he told his mama that he liked the sparkly stars underneath because he could look at them and they put him asleep! Another, a girl, told her auntie that she wasn't reading under her quilt, she was saying good night to her animal friends! You never know.....

    Oh, also (if you feel this way) make sure to tell the mama that these are quilts for the children to USE and not to be put on display, or "saved" (can you tell I hate that?).

    I'm not the world's best quilter by a long shot, but my kid quilts are holding up pretty darn well! PM me if you have any question and I'll try to help. You'll love making kid quilts (you don't have to worry so much about the quilt police).
    Last edited by Sierra; 09-01-2012 at 10:23 PM.

  4. #4
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    Avoid using flannel. I recently repaired a flannel quilt for a 5 year old girl. The fabric is so threadbare that it may ltear apart after a few more washings.

  5. #5
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    My first quilt was a flannel around the world for my granddaughter when she was one. She is 9 now and still uses that quilt and it gets washed with the towels on a regular basis. Quarter inch seams, quilted in the ditch. I used warm and natural and flannel backing. It is in great shape. For grandson who is 4, I made him a flannel and chenille half square triangle quilt (which he calls his triangle blanket) and it has been washed all the time with the towels, quilted in the ditch, and it is in great shape. He brought it with him and we have slept with it. Still cozy. So I guess it depends.

  6. #6
    Senior Member lfletcher's Avatar
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    I have always just used the standard 1/4" seam and do machine quilt. I also just throw my quilts in the washer and dryer and they come out great. I do wash them by themselves and use a gentle cycle in the washer and low heat in the dryer. The more you wash a cotton quilt, the softer they get. My "TV" quilt is about 10 years old and although faded it is so soft I wouldn't even think about replacing it.

  7. #7
    Super Member Raggiemom's Avatar
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    I machine quilt and bind my quilts and toss them in the washer whenever they need it.
    Heather

  8. #8
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I use 1/4 inch seams , machine quilt and machine bind. I find the more quilting the better on heavy use quilts.

  9. #9
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    I hand pieced a Grandmas Flowergarden,approx. 20 years ago. long story short,GD just crawling,fell in love with it. When finished I gave it to her. Remember hand pieced and hand quilted. She is married and 20 something. Sstill takes it every where with her. Beach,picnics and of course when she married, her mother said that quilt was one of the first things that was picked to go. I love that Girl. So just use your usual care and do the best you can. Jo
    Landscape quilts and needle turn applique favs.Antlers,Ok

  10. #10
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pennycandy View Post
    Avoid using flannel. I recently repaired a flannel quilt for a 5 year old girl. The fabric is so threadbare that it may ltear apart after a few more washings.
    Like regular cotton, flannel comes in different qualities. It can be thin and prone to pilling, or it can be warm and robust. Unfortunately, I think it's harder to tell whether you have a good flannel, but I've heard good things about the flannel sold by Connecting Threads. Don't avoid flannel entirely, just be careful about the flannel you use.

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