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Thread: Should we wash our fabric?????

  1. #1
    Super Member bebe's Avatar
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    Chck out this link

    http://quilting.about.com/od/fabrice...ash_fabric.htm

    Wash if you think it needs it???? maybe maybe not :shock: :shock:
    you may be surprised once you put it together and there is a runny mess :roll:

  2. #2
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    In 40 years I found 3 colors run more than others--red, dark blue and some wine colors. When I wash any quilted item I throw in a color catcher and haven't had any trouble. I very rarely wash fabric But will test a little corner in hot water. Yikes. Better safe than sorry. :(

  3. #3
    Super Member joeyoz's Avatar
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    They use better dyes than they used to use years ago. Colors don't run like they used to. Red is probably the only one that could still have issues. A color catcher is a good idea. One fabric you DEFINITELY want to pre-wash is flannel. I has a lot of shrinkage.

  4. #4
    community benefactor Knot Sew's Avatar
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    no right way , no wrong way...its your fabric , do what ever you want.

  5. #5
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    There may be no right way or wrong way, but I'm opting for washing from now on!!! As much as I HATE washing and ironing them, I decided to do a test swatch and see what happened. I had a kit I was getting ready to sew. I cut 1" squares off each fabric and wet them, then ironed to dry. ONE of the 6 fabrics shrank almost 1/4"!!!!!! I had plenty to do the kit but I'm wondering how it would have looked had I not pre-washed! :shock:

  6. #6
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amandasgramma
    There may be no right way or wrong way, but I'm opting for washing from now on!!! As much as I HATE washing and ironing them, I decided to do a test swatch and see what happened. I had a kit I was getting ready to sew. I cut 1" squares off each fabric and wet them, then ironed to dry. ONE of the 6 fabrics shrank almost 1/4"!!!!!! I had plenty to do the kit but I'm wondering how it would have looked had I not pre-washed! :shock:
    I attended a class with Harriet Hargrave, who does not prewash fabrics. She said she wanted to demonstrate to her students that shrinkage is not a problem when machine quilting is done properly (meaning quilting lines the appropriate distance apart for the Hobbs 80/20 batting she used). She used flannel that had not been prewashed for the quilt! She showed it to us, and it was not the shrunken mess I would have expected. She said that the machine quilting stabilizes the fabric.

    I do not prewash fabrics, but will test a piece in cold water if I am suspicious of its colorfastness. I always wash my quilts after they are done and for this wash I use Synthrapol just to make sure that, if there are any bleeds, the excess dye will rinse away rather than settle in other fabrics. In my opinion, it's also important to pay attention to when the wash cycle has completed so fabrics aren't sitting against other fabrics for a long period of time while wet. Knock on wood, but so far I haven't had any problem with bleeding or unwanted shrinkage. (I use cotton batting and like the soft crinkled look it produces; wouldn't work for someone who likes a flat contemporary look.)

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by amandasgramma
    There may be no right way or wrong way, but I'm opting for washing from now on!!! As much as I HATE washing and ironing them, I decided to do a test swatch and see what happened. I had a kit I was getting ready to sew. I cut 1" squares off each fabric and wet them, then ironed to dry. ONE of the 6 fabrics shrank almost 1/4"!!!!!! I had plenty to do the kit but I'm wondering how it would have looked had I not pre-washed! :shock:
    At that rate, a 40 inch strip would have ended up being 30 inches long.
    Seems significant to me.




  8. #8
    Super Member LucyInTheSky's Avatar
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    I prewashed for one quilt and it was difficult to work with the fabric. I like the crispness that they come with, and I can't seem to replicate it at home. So I don't prewash, just because it's easier to cut and sew for me :D

  9. #9
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    I am not a prewasher. I will if it is part of an exchange, but otherwise it a no. I have never had any problems with my quilts.

  10. #10
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    I always prewash. A pain, but I must. Now I put it in the washing machine with a tiny bit of detergent, and agitate it by hand. Then spin. Then fill with water--agitate by hand again, spin and dry. An extra step, but I never wash the quilts after I make them, except for ragged flannels, and even those I might spray with water and dry. I like the unwashed look for as long as it lasts.

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