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Thread: Batik pros and cons

  1. #26
    Super Member M.I.Late's Avatar
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    I was hoping someone was going to talk about the bleeding dye and the absolute necessity to prewash. That is my biggest complaint about Batiks.

  2. #27
    Super Member M.I.Late's Avatar
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    I was hoping someone was going to talk about the bleeding dye and the absolute necessity to prewash. That is my biggest complaint about Batiks. But I've never heard of Retayne. Guess I'll have to try to find some.

  3. #28
    Senior Member Jamiestitcher62's Avatar
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    I am doing a BOM with Tonga Batiks, the Wing & A Prayer pattern Nature. Anyway, I've had a lot of problems getting needles to go through when machine piecing. I dropped my needle size down to a 60/8 and still have problems.

    I do think they are absolutely beautiful, but I made the mistake of doing pillow cases with them and they wrinkle like mad. I don't want to have to iron my pillowcases all the time, live and learn.

  4. #29
    Senior Member cindyg's Avatar
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    I love batiks and have a hard time staying away from them. I wash all my fabrics unless the pattern specifically states not to. I use Retayne or good old fashioned vinegar and warm water on all fabrics except the pastels. I let them soak in the vinegar either in the washer or the sink and then wash them in the washer with a little soap. I keep an eye on the rinse water to see if the fabric is bleeding. If it is I just repeat the process. I love working with batiks - they don't fray much and I've not had a problem machine quilting it and I've used it front and back of quilts with no problem. No, I do not work for Hoffman of any other mfgr. of batiks - LOL.

  5. #30

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    pre wash the reds and dark purples until you are sure they arent' bleeding dye. The reds can be bad about it.

  6. #31
    Super Member sewmuch's Avatar
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    I have made 2 stained glass quilts with batiks, and a couple runners...all prewashed and no problem....most of the fabric was bought at Joann's, but several years ago...

  7. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by mswordwiz
    My main issue with batiks, is I never feel I have enough of them. I love working with them!
    Yes, and I would add that batiks can be more expensive than other fabrics. I love them.

  8. #33
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    My LQS told me the manufacturers are trying to make them softer. My experience is that they are harder to hand quilt and applique. They are so gorgeous I buy them anyway.

  9. #34
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    if you order on line try www.sewbatik.com.
    Their batiks are really good and color and pattern is consistent.

  10. #35
    Power Poster Tweety2911's Avatar
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    Made a quilt, wall hanging, etc and just love working with the fabric and the lovely colors. Lori, thanks for your information and tips on batiks.

  11. #36
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    Someone mentioned a problem with batiks wrinkling, but the ones I have seem to less prone to wrinkle than some of my other cottons. I'm guessing not all batiks are created equal any more than all other fabrics...
    The ones I got from Roberta (bob1414) here on the board are a dream to work with and utterly yummy to look at! I just ordered some more from her.

  12. #37
    Super Member brushandthimble's Avatar
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    I have no complaints, and I no issues with quilting them on my frame, have quilted queen size with no thread breaking. Even with Batik's on front and back.
    Enjoy using them and don't worry about problems you may not encounter.

  13. #38
    Super Member maryb119's Avatar
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    I love batiks. I prewash them in Retayne so the color won't run and use them like any other fabric. I mix them sometimes with other prints. If I like the fabrics together, then I will be happy with the end result.

  14. #39
    Senior Member mms61371's Avatar
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    All pros here! I love batiks! I made a quilt for my bed with batiks, but I did put a lightweight cotton backing on back. Batiks are very heavy and it's the warmest quilt I have ever made. Not very good in the hot Louisiana summers though.

  15. #40
    Super Member paintmejudy's Avatar
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    I used fusibles on 2 all-batik quilts and had no problem. (Flower quilt from Smith Street designs where the flower was fused onto the batik and then machine embroidered.) Maybe your iron was too hot, and maybe you could try using one of the pressing cloths.

  16. #41
    Super Member applique's Avatar
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    I love batiks and have used them since the mid 70's when they were very different in looks. I'll have to post a picture of the vest I made from them back then when they were a whopping $4 a yard. Outrageous! I have hand appliqued with them and use them for bindings almost exclusively. I used size 8, 10, or 12 platinum needles the smaller and thinner the better they slide through the fabric. When taking stitches out it helps to soak in fabric softener to plump up the fibers then brush with a stiff brush to help close them. I wash finished quilts with color catchers and my long arm person has no trouble quilting through multiple layers of fused and satin stitched tops, thank goodness! I also mix them with hand painted fabrics when dictated by color needs or over-paint them when necessary to make them blend better. Too much fun ;c)

  17. #42
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    I was making a batik quilt and all my quilting friends had me so spooked about sewing the batik that I changed my plan to hand piece. After making one block i was thinking...I am going to have to hand sew the binding. So I experimented, and it was fine to hand piece. My fabric was prewashed. Maybe that is what made hand sewing okay. The quilt I made was king size. So, my advice is try and then decide what works best for you.
    Donna

  18. #43
    Senior Member bob1414's Avatar
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    I think everyone on the board knows what I think of them! I work with batiks 99% of the time now - my other fabrics just sit in the cabinets. I really want to use some of my Kaffe Fassett fabric as well as my Australian Aboriginal fabric from M & S, but I am always drawn to my batiks. I still have 700-1000 yards left for sale before I import more. (PM me if interested) I really want to take a vintage pattern that would normally use 30's fabrics and create it in batiks to see how it looks.

  19. #44
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    I completely agree with you about not mixing batiks and other fabrics but I know others are going to disagree. To me it's like dressing in "Sunday-go-to-meeting" clothes and wearing sneakers!
    Quote Originally Posted by pieces
    I love the batiks. Great quality fabric, wide variety of colors.
    The only negative I have come across is when making a quilt you need all batiks. I have tried incorporating batiks and other cotton fabrics and they just don't seem to work together.
    The lapquilt I made with batiks I machine quilted, using a walking foot on my Bernina 180 doing outline
    quilting and had no problem.

  20. #45
    Super Member klgreene's Avatar
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    I love Batiks, you can do so much with them, and colors you didn't think might go together look great. Both these quilts were done with the varigated thread. I did notice that when I hand sewed on the binding it is a bit harder to get thru the material than cotton. But well worth it.

    This was a kit, and I didn't think I'd like the little peach colored squares. But did.
    Name:  Attachment-93165.jpe
Views: 51
Size:  44.4 KB

    This one I sat for hours on the internet looking at Batiks.
    Name:  Attachment-93166.jpe
Views: 51
Size:  622.3 KB

  21. #46
    Super Member Rosyhf's Avatar
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    I love Batiks and have never had a con. I always wash my fabrics before they come in the house and fusing has never been a problem nor the long arm quilting. I use a size 16 or 18 if the thread breaks on any quilt I am quilting. Sometimes you just have to change to a bigger size.

  22. #47
    Member 4luvuvfabric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lori S
    I love to work on Batiks but... Just a few notes:
    1. Do pretreat/wash fabrics with Retayne, batiks RUN/Bleed. it so worth the time to get to the problem prior to constuction. Prewashing will reduce some of the running/bleeding but unless pretreated they will continue to keep running ( smaller amounts at each washing) .
    2. It can be tough to buy Batiks over the internet . Not all the colors will show in the small swatch, or the evenness of the color placement. Batiks like the Hoffman watercolor collection are really one color tone/tone so it is not so much of an issue with that collection.
    I once purchased a batik on line , the swatch showed very good colors that I wanted but when arrived there was another color ( purple) that in the yardage.
    3. Do not use Heat and Bond light or heavy , it leaves a residue stain.
    4. Because they are so thightly woven , removing stitches can leave a permanent needle hole.
    5. hand applique is painful .... really its hard to get the needle through.
    6. If you run out of a specific batik it is next to impossible to get more . There is no identifier in the selvage , the fabric is completley dyed. So tracking one down ... is really hard. If purchasing from the internet do keep a note as to the manufacture and site used. There are a few batik lines ( Hoffman has one that is tonal , and produced for years , but there are lots and lots of shades in the collection and tough to see on a computer exactly which blue you have) .
    7. Repeat number 1 .... can not stress the pretreat enough.

    All that said .. I LOVE batiks and can not get enough of them. They can create some of the most dramatic quilts.
    I'm backing a duvet cover I quilted with a batik. Where do you get Retayne? It would be terrible if all that work got ruined if the batik bled.

  23. #48
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    Just be sure to wash them using Retayne or some other color-fast product. I use a color catcher too and continue washing them until the color catcher comes out clean. Other than that . . . they work just like any fabric. I love batiks. They are my favorites.

  24. #49
    Senior Member rhueluna's Avatar
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    If you want to hand quilt, they are harder to push the needle through. Pretty but not worth it to hand quilt. I use them here and there for color.

  25. #50
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
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    [quote=Jamiestitcher62]I am doing a BOM with Tonga Batiks, the Wing & A Prayer pattern Nature. Anyway, I've had a lot of problems getting needles to go through when machine piecing. I dropped my needle size down to a 60/8 and still have problems.

    I use a microtex 70/10 needle when I'm piecing with batiks and it really helps, no more skipped stitches.
    Sharon W.

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