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Thread: Cotton seeds in batting stained quilt

  1. #1
    Senior Member Faintly Artistic's Avatar
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    Cotton seeds in batting stained quilt

    Just wanted to see if anyone else has had this happen...i made a hand embroidered, hand quilted Dresden pillow several months ago and used natural cotton batting. Apparently it had some pieces of seed stuck in the batting that are now staining my piece! I have tried several stain removers, but the stains will not come out. I'm bummed because I spent a lot of hours on this piece and was going to sell it until I discovered the stains...i may be able to add a few embroidered flowers over the spots. I've tried Carbona, Grandma's secret, and 2 or 3 other stain removers, but nothing has worked. I like cotton batting, but will only be buying white from now on and checking for seed pieces...

  2. #2
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    I have only used pillow forms so I am no help. Hope you can rectify this situation!!!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Faintly Artistic's Avatar
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    The batting was in the pillow top because I quilted it. It takes a pillow form, but there wasn't one in it, had it folded and in my closet...you can see the cotton seeds in it when it's wet...

  4. #4
    Super Member Teen's Avatar
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    Oh no....that's horrible to hear. My DH grandmother passed down her stain remover method. Dab some regular dishwashing soap (not gobs...just enough to cover stain area) on the stain and let absorb for about 10 minutes, using a small brush (I used a toothbrush I keep for this purpose), gently brush over stain working soap into fibers...then rinse with cold water. If dark stain...you may need to do this a couple of times. Good luck..
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  5. #5
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    That's awful. I think your idea of embroidered flowers scattered over it wherever stains may appear is a better solution than taking it apart, changing the batting, requilting and reassembling it. I have heard of this happening before, but I don't recall learning of any solution.

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    That is a situation that I have never heard of before. I am sorry that you had that experience and thank you for sharing your situation. It appears that some embroidered flowers might be the best solution.

  7. #7
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    I have had great success with Retro Clean. It gets out stains but doesn't hurt the fabric. I've used it in many antique quilts and linens.

  8. #8
    Power Poster feline fanatic's Avatar
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    As Teen suggested, I would try Dawn blue dish soap to get the stains out. I have only heard of this happening one other time to an Australian LA quilter. Sadly, the quilt was ruined. I believe, although this is entirely hearsay, that they involved the batting manufacturer but I don't recall who the manufacturer was.

  9. #9
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    Natural doesn't always mean better. My first time using 100% natural cotton batting was my last.
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  10. #10
    Super Member thimblebug6000's Avatar
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    I am wondering if you will just keep making it worse each time you dampen the item? There is probably still oil in the seeds? I have never encountered this using Warm and Natural or Hobbs.

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    Super Member Kitsie's Avatar
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    Have you tried contacting the manufacturer? I'm sure many of us would like to know more about this problem! So sorry for you!
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  12. #12
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    you may not have stains but just the actual seeds being visible--I have an antique quilt from my Grandmother and I worked like a dog one summer to try to remove those "stains" just to have a quilt appraiser tell me that natural cotton bat almost always has seed hulls that when the fabric is wet will be visible.

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    try some Dawn Dishwashing liquid, let it set about 10 minutes.,then gently hand wash out the Dawn.(it doesn't take much).What was the name of your batting? maybe contact the company that makes it and see what they suggest.

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    Are there lots of seeds and can they be removed through the back of the piece? Since it's a pillow, I wonder if you can work from the inside and get the seeds out. Little slits wouldn't be seen but would need to be repaired. If there are a lot, that might not be a solution for this though.

  15. #15
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    I Googled and found this website with some insight:
    http://forum.apqs.com/topic/32452-oi...ow-to-get-out/

    Regarding Grandma's Secret, I found that it does remove oil but that it is a 2-step process. After rubbing in the Grandma's Secret, it is necessary to wash with soap. A visiting guest had gotten grease on her new white sneakers at the airport, from a luggage carrier. My dh tried everything without success. I used a toothbrush to rub Grandma's Secret into the stains and let it rest for a few minutes. The stains were still there, but after I ran the sneakers through the washing machine with soap, everything was removed. My dh couldn't believe it!

    The problem is that, even if you succeed in removing the existing stains, they may reappear because the seeds in the batting can continue to give off oil for a very long time.

    Edit: Have you heard of cottonseed oil? That is the oil coming from the seeds in the batting. The following tips for removing oil from fabric may help:
    https://www.reference.com/home-garde...e652c1f9f08de1
    https://www.thriftyfun.com/Removing-...lothing-1.html
    Last edited by Prism99; 01-08-2018 at 01:16 PM.

  16. #16
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99 View Post
    The problem is that, even if you succeed in removing the existing stains, they may reappear because the seeds in the batting can continue to give off oil for a very long time.
    This is what I was wondering too. I'd contact the manufacturer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99 View Post
    Regarding Grandma's Secret, I found that it does remove oil but that it is a 2-step process. After rubbing in the Grandma's Secret, it is necessary to wash with soap. A visiting guest had gotten grease on her new white sneakers at the airport, from a luggage carrier. My dh tried everything without success. I used a toothbrush to rub Grandma's Secret into the stains and let it rest for a few minutes. The stains were still there, but after I ran the sneakers through the washing machine with soap, everything was removed. My dh couldn't believe it!
    Thank you Prism, I'm taking notes. Years ago, I worked for a company that manufactured cheerleading uniforms. The grease from the knitting machines would end up on the sweaters, but they had a fantastic product that you simply sprayed on, let dry, then blew off with compressed air. About 10 years ago, I discovered that Sullivan's made an identical product, it was fabulous for removing engine grease, butter, etc from my husband's clothes. Then they discontinued it. I'll have to try this Grandma's Secret product.
    Last edited by Peckish; 01-08-2018 at 06:06 PM.

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