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Thread: Sorry, another question, please!

  1. #1
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    Sorry, another question, please!

    Sorry, forgot to ask this. Since I'm not only a new user to this site, but a new quilter also, I have a number of dumb questions. Here is my first one. Why do you spray start your material? Thanks!

  2. #2
    QM
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    I prefer spray sizing, because it does not draw any insects. In either case, the idea is to have the fabric relatively stable when you are cutting and handling it. The more intricate the pattern, the more this matters. The spray also tends to get rid of any wrinlkes, as you iron it. I bet the next question is why wash and iron. The washing is to preshrink and get rid of exess dye. In some cases, it's to identify fabrics that would run in splotches over your quilt, making a real mess after all of your work. If you don't iron, your measurements can be WAY off because the fabric is not really flat. I'll be honest. I hate ironing, but I am really convinced that it matters.

  3. #3
    QM
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    PS. Don't worry about asking dumb questions. I bet every one of us has asked the same questions. "older" quilters shared their knowledge with us, now it's our turn to pay it forward.

  4. #4
    Super Member sewbeadit's Avatar
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    I don't use starch, probably would be a good thing if I did, I don't know. I have allergies and asthma so can't use it.
    Sewbeadit
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by QM View Post
    I prefer spray sizing, because it does not draw any insects. In either case, the idea is to have the fabric relatively stable when you are cutting and handling it. The more intricate the pattern, the more this matters. The spray also tends to get rid of any wrinlkes, as you iron it. I bet the next question is why wash and iron. The washing is to preshrink and get rid of exess dye. In some cases, it's to identify fabrics that would run in splotches over your quilt, making a real mess after all of your work. If you don't iron, your measurements can be WAY off because the fabric is not really flat. I'll be honest. I hate ironing, but I am really convinced that it matters.
    Do you wash all your fabrics before make projects? I've heard pros and cons

  6. #6
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    starch (can) make your fabric hold/stay better for more precise cuts- it helps give the fabric body/stiffness making piecing easier- and gets out those wrinkles-
    some people simply spritz with a little water- or use steam- or use sizing (which is like starch but does not give the stiffness) and some use starch- it is a personal choice-
    i've been using starch for 50 years-so prefer that when water is not enough-
    it washes away when your project is finished and laundered.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  7. #7
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    You'll get lots of answers to wash/not wash...starch/not starch. It really boils down to personal preference. I pre-wash; I starch. I want to pre-shrink my fabric. I've pre-washed and still had things run due to excessive dye. Color catchers are a beautiful thing. I'm also older than dirt and grew up starching cottons when ironing. Just normal for me. But it does give the fabric more body and does make cutting/piecing more accurate - at least for me.

  8. #8
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    Not dumb, very brave and very sensible to ask what you don't know. You are in a safe environment here, so ask away. BTW, I don't starch unless the pattern is very intricate and stiffer fabric would be easier to work with. That happens once in a blue moon because I like the quick and easy.

  9. #9
    Senior Member pinkberrykay's Avatar
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    I am a new quilter!!!! I don't prewash (I have 3 boys so I all ready have plenty of it) but I do starch and it helps a bunch with making sure I get a more accurate cut.

    To find out what works best for you, why don't you pre wash some scraps, iron and sew see how you like it. Then don't pre wash, starch and sew and see what works better for you.

    Like someone above said you will get many answers, its all about prefernce.
    And by the way there is NEVER a dumb question. You can never learn unless you ask.

  10. #10
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    I like to starch and iron my fabric. It helps the fabric to lay perfectly flat when cutting and this makes more accurate piece size. Starch is especially important if any of your cut pieces are not on the straight of grain. Bias edges on diamonds and triangles like to stretch and the starch helps to prevent that. I only wash fabrics that I have pretested for bleeding. (intense reds, purples, batiks etc.)

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