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Thread: How far in advance of using is it okay to starch your fabrics--days, weeks, months?

  1. #1
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    How far in advance of using is it okay to starch your fabrics--days, weeks, months?

    I mixed up a batch of starch before realizing that it has a limited "life" so I need to starch some or all of my fabrics for my next 2 projects (well over 50 to 75 FQ and/or half yards) to not have it go to waste. These fabrics will sit for anywhere from one week to up to possible 4 to 5 weeks before being used.

    Is there an ideal limit to how long a fabric should sit starched before it is used? I'm using Sta-flo, is that the kind that you have to be careful of bugs? I'm a newbie to Sta-flo (been using Best Press the past 2 years).

  2. #2
    Super Member MaryMo's Avatar
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    This is the reason I like spray starch .... I make my own. I starch as I use the fabric to avoid the problem of bugs and other problems.
    Make it a scrappy happy day!

  3. #3
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    I've used Sta-flo for awhile now and haven't noticed it goes bad. Just shake it up some before you use it again. The problem I have is the sprayer gets clogged if I haven't used the starch for a long period (a few months). I put the sprayer in some hot tap water and let the starch melt and it works fine.

    So far I haven't had problems with bugs. I get a lot of donated fabrics because I make quilts for charity and sometimes they have an oder that I have to wash out. THen I'll starch and press those pieces before putting them away on the shelf.

  4. #4
    Power Poster mighty's Avatar
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    I starch as I am using the fabric, but my scraps are starched and I have never had a problem.

  5. #5
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    I don't like to store my fabrics with starch in them because I HAVE had problems with bugs, silverfish mostly. However, 4 to 5 weeks isn't bad, I think you will be okay. If you store your starch in the refrigerator when you're not using it, it will extend the life of the starch.

  6. #6
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    my MIL used to roll up the starched clothes and put them in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. i'd be afraid that the fabric would mold if stored too long.
    Nancy in western NY

  7. #7
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    QuiltnNan, I am going to press them today so they will be dry. Are you thinking they would mold if dry (or if I sprayed the starch but did not press)?

  8. #8
    Super Member irishrose's Avatar
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    I have used StaFlo for three years (in a recycled Niagra bottle) and haven't had any problems with it going bad. It has some preservatives in it - I'd be more concerned about homemade with no preservatives. I would not starch the FQs to store them. I just do what I need for each quilt.

  9. #9
    Super Member DOTTYMO's Avatar
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    Just be careful the batch is weak enough. I made my
    First batch toooooooooo thick I thought it was okay but when dry
    It was like paper.and very difficult to iron creases out. If you spray too much when ironing it goes lroning it goes through to ironing board and will damage anything that is ironed later. I keep left starch in a bottle and mix with a little water before putting in sprayer
    Finished is better than a UFO

  10. #10
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    I'll starch a bunch, iron what I can, then, store the starched fabric in the freezer for up to 3 weeks. Everything was fine. I've stored starched fabric for at least 6 weeks without a problem.
    aka Gale

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