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Thread: Starch and yellowing

  1. #1
    Senior Member vicki75's Avatar
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    Hi all...I have a friend who starched some white fabric and has noticed it turned yellow in places after she ironed it. The problem is...she's done with the top. She didn't notice the discolorations until she had everything embroidered and put together. Any ideas on how to get the yellowing out? Or will it be permanent? Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    a regular here MegsAnn's Avatar
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    Has she washed it yet? I'd try that first.

  3. #3
    Super Member lovingmama's Avatar
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    Why it turns yellow, I don't know, may be the iron is to hot and it lightly burns it.

  4. #4
    Junior Member simplyme's Avatar
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    She may have scorched the starch. When using heavy starch it is best to let fabric dry a little bit before ironing. If it is just the starch that is scorched it should wash out.

  5. #5
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
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    There could have been 'something' on the fabric to begin with that has nothing to do with the starch. kinda like sweat on a white shirt, that reacts to the heat... maybe an oxi-clean solution and a very clean cloth and just do a little dab a do....

  6. #6
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    I have had that happen with Kona Snow. It washed out.

  7. #7
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I'm a starcher from way back. I have had that happen a few times. Here is what has caused it to happen to me.
    1. The starch mixture was older than 1 week. When I mix my own using tap water , if I let the mixture age more than one week or so it will have disscoloration. This comes from a few causes. The water that comes from the tap still has some impurties , and clorine is used to kill bacteria , but it does not kill all the bacteria . Even the bleach commercials say kills 99percent. So there are some minor amounts that will breed and grow in a homemade starch solution. This can cause the yellowing. Refigerating a homemade solution , even when you dilute a concentrate prolongs the shelf life but it should still be discarded after about 10 days.
    2. The starch burns faster than the fabric. Once the starch has a bit of scorch it will wash out, as the starch is soluable .
    3. If it is from a commercially prepared spray starch ( in a can) it is propably not a shelf life issue, as they use sterile water in their processes. It would take years to have the solution degrade.
    4. If you are using a homemade solution either from a concentrate or scratch, the stronger the solution the more likely it is to happen.
    5. If you are using a homemade solution or home diluted solution use a clear bottle. You can see a bit of yellowing starting from age.
    If you are concerned about fabrics yellowing on the shelf that have been starched , that is only a concern if there is High moisture content, as water/humidity are the key .

    She can spot remove the yellowing with clear water, do note she may see abit of the yellowing spread at first , but keep diluting rinsing the area, till all of the starch has been removed, or wait and launder the final project.

  8. #8
    Super Member fayzer's Avatar
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    My mother always used lemon juice and then laid it out in the sun to dry.

  9. #9
    Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by vicki75
    Hi all...I have a friend who starched some white fabric and has noticed it turned yellow in places after she ironed it. The problem is...she's done with the top. She didn't notice the discolorations until she had everything embroidered and put together. Any ideas on how to get the yellowing out? Or will it be permanent? Thanks so much!
    Sounds like she may have scorched the starch slightly.

    It will probably come out if she soaks the fabric to get the starch thoroughly rehydrated and then washes it out of the fabric.

  10. #10
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    That is what came to my mind. I hope not.



    Quote Originally Posted by lovingmama
    Why it turns yellow, I don't know, may be the iron is to hot and it lightly burns it.

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