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Black Fabric Magnet

Black Fabric Magnet

Old 02-25-2020, 05:47 PM
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Unhappy Black Fabric Magnet

A couple of years ago I bought 3 yards of quilting store quality black fabric. When I went to use it, it was covered in cat hair. I keep a fairly clean house (with only one cat) but this fabric attracted every hair within shouting distance. Now I need some black fabric again. Is there anything I can do to 'treat" this so that it won't be such a magnet for threads and hairs? Thanks for your help.
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Old 02-25-2020, 06:08 PM
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Have you tried first a lint roller (or packing tape wrapped around your hand) to pick all the hairs up? After you've done that, I'd wipe a dryer sheet over the fabric to inhibit any static hangers-on. If the issue is the fabric is just very nappy and sticky, look at the back side. Is it less sticky and will the color of the back work?
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Old 02-25-2020, 07:29 PM
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I have noticed that I always see threads of all colors on the black fabric, but that doesn't happen to white fabric near as much. I think we have to live with it. I have all my black fabric in it's special box, covered. I also do this to keep it separated from the dark navy blue.
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Old 02-25-2020, 11:32 PM
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The sulphur used in black dying makes it collect lint (and fur). I have had some luck using a harder finished fabric as opposed to a softer finish.
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Old 02-26-2020, 03:12 AM
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I have noticed the phenomena also. The black that I like to use is called Amish Black purchased from Keepsake Quilting. It comes in a plastic bag and until It was time to use it, I leave it in the bag. Black does seem to be a magnet and I often use painter's tape to remove the kitty fir, one cat, and all of those little magical snips of colored thread disappear.
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Old 02-26-2020, 06:04 AM
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I use a lot of black and it is the nature of the beast. All black fabric attracts hair, lint, stray fibers like crazy. And it all shows a lot more than on lighter colors. Irishrose2 brings up an interesting point and I never knew that but it explains a lot. I don't know if they use sulphur dyes in navy but navy shows a lot too. In fact any dark solid seems to show a lot, deep forest greens, dark browns, etc. But black definitely seems to be the worst. But I don't care, I love the look of black background quilts, especially paired with bright batiks.

When I make a show quilt that has black in it I am constantly dehairing it as I go and when it is done, I go over it with contact paper (the peel and stick stuff you line cabinet shelves with) I find it is stickier than masking tape and much larger so I can cover a lot of surface area at once. I also do my final wash with hairzappers which seem to help ball up all the loose hair so it is easier to pick off. https://www.amazon.com/FURZAPPER-Gen...ct_top?ie=UTF8

Last edited by feline fanatic; 02-26-2020 at 06:10 AM.
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Old 02-26-2020, 07:08 AM
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I have pets of every possible fur color but amazingly even the black fur shows on black fabric. It's the main reason I don't like working with flannel (black or not), all I have to do is walk from one end of the house to the other and the piece will attract fibers and hair like a black hole...

I find a smooth weave with a slightly shiny appearance is best for me, coarser fabrics seems to have the fur/threads line up with the weave and be harder to get off than those cross-wise. I decided a few years ago that I would only buy Kona Black so that all my black scraps are consistent. Hate having some blacks not as black as others, especially when you have a lot of black background it can really show.

I use all the standards, blue tape, lint rollers, and when it is really bad (like if somehow the cat gets on top of it and sleeps on it, a slightly damp washcloth and vigorous scrubbing motions.

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Old 02-26-2020, 07:40 AM
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A little off-topic, but I wonder if you who use black fabric frequently pre-wash it. I am not a pre-washer and have never had a problem with running color -- so far. One problem I do have with black, however, is that it turns shiny when I iron more than one layer (such as a 1/4" seam). And it never seems to go away, the shininess.
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Old 02-26-2020, 07:43 AM
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I pre-wash everything.

Lee, you can try using a pressing cloth if you are pressing the top of the fabric, doesn't have to be fancy just grab a piece of flannel or something. It usually isn't so bad if you are only pressing from the back. But I'd also check your heat and steam settings, probably lowering the heat and no steam will be a help.
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Old 02-26-2020, 12:56 PM
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I have 2 long hair cats and a poodle, the white poodle never has fur/hair on my projects. But, the cats have fur on everything, so have roll of masking tape, rollers and a spray bottle near you to shoot the cats. They love to be near me when sewing or quilting. They know to scoot when I show them the spray bottle.
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