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Thread: Starching fabric

  1. #1
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I remember this is exactly how my mother and grandmother starched all the clothes every laundry day. I have the old sprinkle bottles they used. It makes sense that starching cotton fabric is best for quilting since it was the best for clothes.

    http://marcusfabrics.com/features/qu...ts/index.shtml

  2. #2
    Super Member sewjoyce's Avatar
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    Oh my goodness -- that's a great article!! Will have to least try the cheater "spray starch" method :wink:

  3. #3
    Senior Member Connie1948's Avatar
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    I am a startcher. I also have one of those sprinkler bottles from my mother or grandmother. I use Mary Ellen's starch for touch up. I have not use the fridge method but will this weekend. I just get everthing really damp with the "sprinkler" and then wrap it in a plastic bag for an hour or so. If cold fabric irons easier I am all for it. I cannot wait to see my family's reaction to fabric in the fridge!
    connie1948

  4. #4
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    I remember my Dad's dress shirts in a bag in the fridge!! And the "sprinkler was about 2 inches in diameter with tons of little holes and a cork on the base so you could use any bottle you had. Ours was greenish, probably an old dish soap bottle!! Ah, the memories :lol: :lol:

    I couldn't remember the process, so this is great. Nothing I like better than the smell of warm starched fabric :D

    Thanks for the link!!

  5. #5
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    I also remember my mom starching clothes. What an interesting article. I'm going to try it, but with spray starch. Thanks.

  6. #6
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    I think my method of starching yardage is easier.

    I mix a 50/50 solution of Sta-Flo liquid starch and water in a bowl, lay my fabric out on the kitchen island, and then "paint" the starch on with a large paint brush (the cheap type you can purchase to paint walls). The fabric gets pretty wet with this method. I put it in the dryer. When I have time, I iron it with steam.

    The above is a very heavy starch solution that makes the fabric quite stiff. I use it for machine applique backgrounds, so I don't have to use a stabilizer under the background. I think it would be awfully stiff for piecing. If I were starching fabric for piecing, I would probably use a 1:3 or 1:4 solution of Sta-Flor and water. I'm usually satisfied with the sizing that is already in the fabric as it comes off the bolt. I don't pre-wash my fabrics because I like that bit of stiffness in the fabric when I am cutting and piecing.

    I think spray starching at the ironing board is fine for small pieces, but I would find it very tiring for doing a lot of fabric at one time. Commercial spray starch tends to sit on top of the fabric; it takes awhile to sink in. If you try to iron right away, before the starch has a chance to sink in, the starch turns into flakes. Plus, if your iron is really hot and you start ironing too soon, you can scorch the starch and have both awful-looking fabric and gunk to clean off the bottom of the iron.

    Not sure if there is an advantage to refrigerating or freezing fabric instead of drying it in the dryer. If I were ambitious, I'd compare the two methods to find out!

  7. #7
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    i skip all the worries about bugs by not starching until i'm ready to use it. i divide my fabs into fat Qs or fat halves, depending on the project. they're easier to work with at the cutting board and not much bother to iron. (of course, i've also made an "ironing board cover" that fits over my kitchen table, so it's even easier.)

    all the methods described so far are great. i've tried a few.

    my personal preference is to pour a 50/50 mix of liquid starch/water into a recycled spray bottle. since different fabs require different amounts of starch to get stiff, i know i won't over or under starch. then i use my iron, cranked up to the highest setting. it's faster, and i'm not very patient. :lol:

  8. #8
    Super Member mpeters1200's Avatar
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    I also use a 50/50 mix of Sta Flo and water. I use a spray bottle for a buck at the dollar tree or walmart, just any spray bottle. I shake the bottle, spray the bejonkers out of it and press like mad. It's great. I'm almost scared to put it in the fridge..but if it presses better I might spray it first and then pop it in the fridge to see if it presses better.


  9. #9
    Super Member sewjoyce's Avatar
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    Can you buy Sta Flo at the grocery or WalMart???

  10. #10
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    yes

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