Go Back  Quiltingboard Forums > Main
cleaning vintage blocks >

cleaning vintage blocks

cleaning vintage blocks

Old 05-12-2017, 11:40 AM
  #1  
Super Member
Thread Starter
 
sdeaaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Iowa
Posts: 1,306
Default cleaning vintage blocks

I was given these blocks by a fellow quilter. There are 20 of them.... all hand quilted. The only problem is that they are very stained. I have googled cleaning and Biz and Oxy-clean seems a favorite for removing stains... Just wondered if anyone had better advice.
Also would love your suggestions for quilting them.

Thanks.
Attached Thumbnails img_2795-640x480-.jpg   img_2796-480x640-.jpg  
sdeaaz is offline  
Old 05-12-2017, 11:51 AM
  #2  
Power Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Western Wisconsin
Posts: 12,930
Default

I would not wash them until they are already quilted. There are risks associated with washing them first. Risks include having the edges fray, having the fabrics shrink and distort in different ways, and having the applique fabrics or embroidery thread bleed. Most of these risks can be handled if you are aware of them ahead of time. For example, hand wash with little agitation to avoid fraying; block each square immediately after it comes out of the water and allow to dry blocked; use Synthrapol in the wash water to help avoid dyes settling into background fabric, and/or use Synthrapol in the first one or more washes of the quilt to remove any dye bleeds. However, it is still safer to wait to wash until the blocks are already quilted into a quilt. Shrinkage distortion from pre-washing may or may not be fully recoverable; in other words, some distortion may not block out. Quilting will prevent distortion from shrinkage, and Synthrapol will prevent dye bleeds from settling.

I would not use Biz or Oxy-clean, much as I love those products. I would use RetroClean: http://retroclean.com/
Prism99 is offline  
Old 05-12-2017, 11:53 AM
  #3  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Farmington Hills, Michigan
Posts: 226
Default

I've had good luck with Oxy-Clean on stains like that. I mixed up a strong solution in a plastic dish pan and let the item soak. It took a couple of days, along with making some fresh solution on the second day, but the stains came out and the colors were intact. I then ran cool water into the dish pan until it was rinsed.

Good luck with your blocks - they're really pretty!
SherylM is offline  
Old 05-12-2017, 01:05 PM
  #4  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Herefordshire, UK
Posts: 371
Default

I agree with SheryIM. I have done this method also; small vintage items that were badly stained and I soaked them in a Oxy-Clean solution in a plastic bowl, refreshing the solution after a day. I used lukewarm water. It was effective.
charley26 is offline  
Old 05-12-2017, 01:48 PM
  #5  
Moderator
 
QuiltnNan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: western NY formerly MN, FL, NC, SC
Posts: 51,433
Default

good luck.. they are a treasure
__________________
Nancy in western NY
before you speak T.H.I.N.K. T is it True? H is it Helpful? I is it Inspiring? N is it Necessary? K is it Kind?
Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance.
QuiltnNan is offline  
Old 05-12-2017, 02:18 PM
  #6  
Power Poster
 
nativetexan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: home again, after 27 yrs!
Posts: 19,388
Default

Retro clean, that is what I've heard does wonders with stains!
nativetexan is offline  
Old 05-12-2017, 08:47 PM
  #7  
Super Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Piedmont Virginia in the Foothills of the Blue Ridge Mtns.
Posts: 8,554
Default

I concur; Prism always has the best succinct, smart, helpful responses. I count on her wisdom a lot!

Jan in VA

Originally Posted by Prism99 View Post
I would not wash them until they are already quilted. There are risks associated with washing them first. Risks include having the edges fray, having the fabrics shrink and distort in different ways, and having the applique fabrics or embroidery thread bleed. Most of these risks can be handled if you are aware of them ahead of time. For example, hand wash with little agitation to avoid fraying; block each square immediately after it comes out of the water and allow to dry blocked; use Synthrapol in the wash water to help avoid dyes settling into background fabric, and/or use Synthrapol in the first one or more washes of the quilt to remove any dye bleeds. However, it is still safer to wait to wash until the blocks are already quilted into a quilt. Shrinkage distortion from pre-washing may or may not be fully recoverable; in other words, some distortion may not block out. Quilting will prevent distortion from shrinkage, and Synthrapol will prevent dye bleeds from settling.

I would not use Biz or Oxy-clean, much as I love those products. I would use RetroClean: http://retroclean.com/
Jan in VA is offline  
Old 05-13-2017, 04:56 AM
  #8  
Super Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: The Deep South near Cajun Country, USA
Posts: 4,599
Default

Those are such pretty blocks. I have no suggestions but am glad to hear what others have had success with. That's another note in my quilt folder. "smile"
Barb in Louisiana is offline  
Old 05-13-2017, 12:13 PM
  #9  
Super Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: kansas
Posts: 5,927
Default

I had some vintage blocks that I didn't want to bother quilting if I couldn't get the stains out. So I pieced together, ran a seam of stitches around the outside edge, then SOAKed in either RetroClean or Restoration (have used both successfully with older quilts/linen) in my top load washer tub. Spun out the water once soaking done (when hot water cooled), did it again a 2nd time, and then quilted. Worked great and these all had white backgrounds.
quiltingshorttimer is offline  
Old 05-13-2017, 01:35 PM
  #10  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 291
Default

I used Retro Clean for some stained Grandmother's Flower Garden blocks I bought at a tag sale. I could not have been happier with the results. There were about 30 blocks and I soaked maybe half a dozen or so at a time in a small tub.
They came out so clean
I wanted to tea dye them to make them look more vintage again.
No heavy odors either.

Last edited by Nesie; 05-13-2017 at 01:45 PM.
Nesie is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
sewbizgirl
Main
19
12-19-2016 06:02 AM
ILoveToQuilt
Main
12
10-25-2013 07:55 AM
Tallbald
For Vintage & Antique Machine Enthusiasts
5
11-17-2011 04:09 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


FREE Quilting Newsletter


SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.