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Thread: Unwashed vs. Washed Fabric

  1. #1
    Super Member jillaine's Avatar
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    I am learning so much on this board. Thank you everyone for sharing all your incredible experience.

    I was always told to pre-wash my fabric before quilting or any sewing for that matter; in fact, the FIRST thing I do when I get home from the fabric store is throw my new fabric into the washing machine.

    But I've seen reference to preferences for unwashed fabric. And on e-bay I'll often see -- for example -- jelly rolls that contain unwashed fabric. (And what the heck do you do about THAT? Seems like washing 2.5" strips would be a nightmare.)

    So are y'all willing to share your experience again on this topic? When would one want to work with unwashed fabric?

    Thanks!

    -- Jillaine

  2. #2
    Super Member Murphy's Avatar
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    I never prewash my fabric (smile). It is a matter of preference for most people.

  3. #3
    Power Poster Sadiemae's Avatar
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    I would never prewash jelly rolls, but I know that some people have allergies and have to.

  4. #4
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    I only prewash fabric if I am using it with other fabric that has already been washed.

  5. #5
    Magdalena's Avatar
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    I pre-wash everything from a fat-quarter and up. I don't wash jelly rolls, charms or cakes.

  6. #6
    MTS
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy
    I never prewash my fabric (smile). It is a matter of preference for most people.
    Ditto. Plus I really dislike white solid in quilts anyway, and decided long ago that I won't ever make a red and white quilt. So that cuts down on a lot of the problems right there. ;-)

    I do prewash some fabrics I buy internationally, like batiks (not those that are commercially manufactured). But that's it. I can't be bothered, and I've never had a problem.

  7. #7
    Super Member Rose L's Avatar
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    I only pre-wash things that will likely fade and run, like Reds. Other wise I piece the quilt and when it's finished I give it a soak, not an agitation, and then dry it to remove most of the dies, finishes and get some shrinkage on it. Once quilted and binded I wash again with agitation and dry in the dryer to make sure it's completely clean and nice and fluffy. I might do things differently if were a heirloom quilt, but one that is to be used by family and babies etc. get the washing treatment.

  8. #8
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    I really like it! :)

  9. #9
    Senior Member craftyone27's Avatar
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    I only prewash when I have to - like for a block swap on this board-LOL. My most recent experience w/that reinforced my feeling that I don't need to prewash. The focus fabric in the block swap was black. I purchased two different black fabrics to use in the swap and was dreading the washing process. I loaded the washer with color-catchers and crossed my fingers. Neither of the black fabrics ( or any of the other colors) bled!!! I will happily continue to NOT WASH my fabrics until after my quilts are done!

  10. #10
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I only pre-wash flannel fabrics. They all shrink so differently!!
    Also, I never use a pure white, maybe a white on white occasionally and hardly use reds. I always wash my quilts before going out the door with a couple color catchers and with the over 200 quilts I have made thus far, have never had a problem with bleeding or excessive shrinkage.

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