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Thread: Your tips for working with black fabric?

  1. #1
    Super Member running1's Avatar
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    Your tips for working with black fabric?

    Hello all!! I'm putting a binding on a small wall hanging of black fabric and I've learned (in a hurry) that my lighting is not what it needs to be!!! I began this little project last night, but realized I need more light. Today in the brighter light of day it is going much easier. I've always wanted to do a quilt with a lot of black in it... they are always so striking, and I've seen many here on the QB that I love. But, now that I've struggled with this 80" of binding, I'm wondering if any of you have more suggestions for working with black fabric? I need all the help I can get!!! Thanks all!!
    "... let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."

  2. #2
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    Light Light and more light is the answer. I made a wall hanging with black background and used an Ott lamp with magnifier to see the stitches while I was sewing.
    Got fabric?

  3. #3
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    I have done alot of work with black fabrics, the key things I would recommend is:
    1. Good lighting, as stated before. Although I love using metallic threads on the black. Let loose and have fun!
    2. Black batting, with any quilting you will get some bearding from the batting, Hobbs sells a black batting that is 80/20 cotton/poly. It works really well and you dont see white/natural little puffs everywhere.
    3. The fabrics you put with black need to be bright or light, if you get too dark it blends and you miss out on the black being the highlight, unless you want to blend (I did that with my french braid, red into black)
    4. If you use machingers for your quilting, I recommend turning them around *(you end up switching hands)* cause the black will bleed a little, even if you prewash, on the gloves. Or you can get a pair for dark fabrics and a pair for light fabrics. Personally, I am cheap I just use one side for black/dark and one side for light/white.

    And as I said, let loose and enjoy, black can be very striking, it is wonderful for bright varigated threads.

  4. #4
    Senior Member faykilgore's Avatar
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    I was given a great tip about using navy blue thread w black fabric unless it's a show quilt that will be judged for purity. The navy doesn't show but is more visible to you, esp if you have to rip it out. Unfortunately I know this from experience!
    Fay

    Wanted: a job that involves raising cats, riding motorcycles and creating quilts!

  5. #5
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    I use a combination of cool flouresant tube lights and an Ott light in my sewing area when using dark fabrics. In fact, the Ott light is only turned on for dark fabric. I've also used white or yellow chalk to mark where I need to stitch if it's an unusual stitching pattern.

  6. #6
    Junior Member MissSongbird's Avatar
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    Black collects hair like a magnet...or at least it seems that way haha. So be ready for that. And like CarolynMT said use a bright or light colored fabric with the black. The contrast will make it that much more striking.

    Definitely go for that black quilt. I just made one and it is my favorite so far. It's so much different than most other quilts.

  7. #7
    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
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    When I sewed a black binding to a black backing, I turned on every light and opened all the shades in my sewing room! I have a table size OTT light and put it directly over the area that I was sewing or unsewing. I also suggest that if you have a white cat that is your quilting helper (like I do) that you send her on vacation until you are done!! Keep your lint roller close by as you will use it often. Black batting is definately your friend!!!
    No one has ever become poor by giving. - Anne Frank
    Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

    http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheQuiltedPig

  8. #8
    Super Member running1's Avatar
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    Black batting? did not know about that, and would not have known to ask! Thank you so much! Yes, I'll definitely need a LOT of light!! and switching the Machingers... another great idea!! And yes, the lint roller has become a good friend... DH wanted a yellow lab and she is now 1 year old... She's a great dog, but she sheds like no dog we've ever had!!

    Thanks everyone!! I finished the binding today while the sun was out and having plenty of light made a huge difference! I'll be choosing fabric soon (I hope)!! Happy Quilting everyone... thanks again to all for responding... I ALWAYS learn something new!!!
    "... let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."

  9. #9
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    You will be able to see better if your light shines on your work, not in your face. I drag my floor lamp over to my chair so the light shines over my shoulder and onto my work. I also have a clamp lamp that I can clamp to the edge of my desk to shine the light on my work.

  10. #10
    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
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    Connecting has their batting on sale right now. This is the batting that I used when I made my quilt that was 95% black http://www.connectingthreads.com/too...g__D20826.html
    No one has ever become poor by giving. - Anne Frank
    Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

    http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheQuiltedPig

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