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Thread: Do You PRESS or IRON your Yardage before starting to cut for piecing?

  1. #1
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    Do You PRESS or IRON your Yardage before starting to cut for piecing?

    So, I have been interested in clarification on this for a while. After you have prewashed and dried you fabric (I like to fully dry mine so that all shrinkage is achieved), do you press it or iron it? I generally start with a press, picking up and moving the iron a few inches at a time across the fabric surface but then I lightly move the iron across the surface as well.

    I've heard many times that there should be no ironing in quilting. Is this true or is it okay to iron the large yardage pieces before they are cut?

  2. #2
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    Iron on new fabric, and I attempt to press my blocks, but am not always successful. I don't like to stretch my seams.....

  3. #3
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    I don't prewash anymore but I do iron new fabric with Best Press before cutting.

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    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I cut the amount of fabric I need in 1/4 or 1/2 yards. I starch my fabric very stiff before cutting. I cover my ironing surface with white muslin. Any bleeding fabric will show immediately and get pre washed.
    Got fabric?

  5. #5
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    I iron - not press - fabric before I cut it. But, that is just me and probably not right!

  6. #6
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    I start out pressing... no stretching when pressing.. but then I lapse and iron. I've never had any bad results but I do feel guilty.

  7. #7
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    I always press/iron my fabric! Who wants to try to cut/sew on a piece that has fold lines and wrinkles in it? Yuck! And I am a firm believer that the pressing is the difference between that handmade vs homemade appearance of a project.

  8. #8
    Senior Member cmw0829's Avatar
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    All fabric that enters my home is washed, dried, and ironed.

    If I don't plan to use the fabric for an immediate project, it gets folded on a magazine board (like a comic board but larger) and labeled. Otherwise, my sewing room would be a mess.

  9. #9
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    I iron (not press) all fabric before I cut. It gets starched at this point

    I also press/starch all my final blocks, before I assemble the quilt.


    I ALWAYS starch my backing fabric before I start my quilting (on a domestic)

  10. #10
    Super Member Helen S's Avatar
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    Since I haven't found a fabric yet that didn't shrink after it was washed, I wash everything that comes into the house, dry it, fold it and put it away, then iron just before using them.

    I use spray sizing most of the time. When I iron the fabric, I always push the iron with the grain of the fabric so there is no stretching going on, and I try to make sure of this when using smaller scraps before ironing. My iron has a water spray feature, but since it has to be refilled often, I prefer to keep a spray bottle handy to help with any deep wrinkles.

    When sewing seams, I press as I go, rather than iron. Again, I try to make sure I know where the straight of the grain is to avoid any possible stretching.
    Being skinny isn't easy, so I gave up and opted for being sexy instead. (aunty acid)

  11. #11
    Super Member Neesie's Avatar
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    I wash, dry, fold. I don't iron, until I'm ready to start cutting the fabric. If I iron and then fold it, I have to RE-iron, before cutting; this just doesn't make sense, to me. I press each seam, before crossing with another seam.
    Neesie


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  12. #12
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I prewash all fabrics, except kits, only one, I dry and fold with a ruler and don't need to iron before cutting. If wrinkled I do iron, just press as I piece.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  13. #13
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I have to admit .. I try to press yardage... but really end up ironing. I do use a terry cloth towel on my ironing board that really helps the fabric from being stretched. It works wonders when pressing blocks . I can remove and wash it more often than I would if I just used my regular ironing board cover. I put the towel over the cover and use binder clips or long pins on the underside to hold the towel.

  14. #14
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    I never prewash my fabric. But I use Best Press and press/iron my fabirc before using it.
    "Be yourself...everyone else is taken."
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  15. #15
    Super Member OKLAHOMA PEACH's Avatar
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    I Press and starch before cutting

  16. #16
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    I iron (with very light steam) washed fabric from the back side - and iron along the grain lines - when ready to use the fabric.

    If/when I find a flaw in the fabric, I put a small safety pin on the selvage nearest the problem - and a small safety pin on/over the problem.

    So far, I'm not a big fan of starch/sizing. Except for things like kite-shaped pieces. I think fabric should have enough 'body' to stand on its own.

  17. #17
    Junior Member grandmasieg's Avatar
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    I wash my fabric as I use it. I put the yardage in a mesh bag and wash with a detergent that is free of dyes or frangrance (allergy free, such as Dreft) and do not use fabric softener. I use the "gentle" cycle. I take out of mesh bag, shake, and dry in dryer on the "less dry" cycle until it is almost dry. The dollar store has large zippered mesh bags that I snach up. The washer likes to have at least two mesh bags so that it's balanced. I then starch as I iron the damp yardage and then hang on the clothesline (preferrable outside in the nice weather). When totally dry I start cutting. I do set my seams as I sew. This works for me. I restarch my blocks before I put them together and restarch my backing before quilting. I also throw a color catcher into the mesh bag before washing.

    Hugs!
    Debbie

  18. #18
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    I think that when people mention pressing in quilting, they are talking about before your fabric is cut. If your fabric is not ironed if you washed it your cuts will not come out good.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltstringz View Post
    I think that when people mention pressing in quilting, they are talking about before your fabric is cut. If your fabric is not ironed if you washed it your cuts will not come out good.
    I agree that all fabric should be ironed/pressed before cutting it.
    When using paper patterns, I also iron them before using them.

    I iron/press my fabric after washing it and before cutting it.

    I press seams and blocks as I construct the units.

  20. #20
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I don't pre-wash but I do Iron before cutting up for piecing
    I press my seams when constructing my quilts


    My newest Grandson, Caleb Austin, was born May 29th. I am now Grandma to 4 precious babies. I am so blessed!!!!

  21. #21
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neesie View Post
    I wash, dry, fold. I don't iron, until I'm ready to start cutting the fabric. If I iron and then fold it, I have to RE-iron, before cutting; this just doesn't make sense, to me. I press each seam, before crossing with another seam.
    Ditto that for me. And I NEVER starch anything at any time ever.
    The Earth without art is just "Eh".

  22. #22
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  23. #23
    Super Member quiltinggirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scissor Queen View Post
    I don't prewash anymore but I do iron new fabric with Best Press before cutting.

    This is my process as well.
    God, Wonderful Family, Great Health, Awesome Friends, Quilting & Chocolates - - What more could a girl be blessed with!!

  24. #24
    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
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    I wash and iron with a light steam and with Best Press all fabric when it comes in the house. When I am piecing, I press only and with NO steam. Made that mistake once on a quilt that had lots of triangles. . . what a distorted mess!!!
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  25. #25
    Super Member Farm Quilter's Avatar
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    I always pre-wash my fabric (hate the chemicals they put on the fabrics in the warehouses) and then they get hung dry (spray with starch at this time) then iron it.

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