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Drying Quilts

Old 09-16-2011, 08:26 AM
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How I've always dried my quilts after washing is to *FIRST* dry them flat until they feel dry to the touch and are about the same weight they were before they were washed.

*THEN* I put the dry quilt into the dryer for about 20 minutes, to fluff it and to make sure the last traces of moisture are gone.

My reasoning is that the seams and fabric in a quilt are most vulnerable when the quilt is wet and has all the weight of the water in it. By waiting until the water is almost completely gone, the quilt is least likely to be damaged by the dryer. I do want to be sure the last of the moisture is gone from the quilt, particularly if I plan to store it after cleaning.

Since I've started reading QB, I've noticed a lot of people who do the reverse--they put the wet quilt in the dryer first, then take it out and let it finish drying flat. Is there some advantage to this method that I'm just not seeing?
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Old 09-16-2011, 08:28 AM
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I don't have a place big enough to lay out a quilt to dry so they all go into the dryer.
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Old 09-16-2011, 08:32 AM
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I wash on delicate, dry on low. Always. Never had a problem doing them this way.
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Old 09-16-2011, 08:36 AM
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Good advice if you have the space-which I did when living in Vanuatu, but not here. (I also didn't have a dryer there-cost too much to run so we hung everything on the line). My son's queen quilt which I hand-quilted and made many years ago (and from Joann's Keepsake calico - not their best) has been washed and washed and washed so many times and for the past 4 years since he has lived in the States, has been tossed in the dryer right from the washer and it always comes out looking fresh and lovely! I might add, I also haven't noticed any fabric fading, and it is made with a variety of blues on white tonal background (I posted a photo last year -the Railroad Ties)
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Old 09-16-2011, 08:46 AM
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In good weather I drape an old sheet over my deck railing and put the quilt on it. If it's too cold or raining I drape the wet quilt over my couch. Tossing them into the dryer afterwards is a good idea, fulls them and does get rid of lint and stray threads.
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Old 09-16-2011, 09:22 AM
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Taking it out of the dryer damp and finishing it flat on the floor is necessary only if you want to block the quilt. Blocking means you spread it out and maneuver it so it is exactly square again, and flat, pinning in place if necessary. IMO blocking can be important for wall quilts so they hang flag and square; not so important for bed quilts.
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Old 09-16-2011, 09:29 AM
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I dry all the ones I make in the dryer unless it is summer time and I can put them on the clothesline. If I have to wash an antique one I might purchase I dry it flat on a sheet either in my attic in the winter or outside on the lawn. I keep an eye on them if they are outside though.
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:17 PM
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After washing, I put a sheet on the grass nd then the quilt backing side up. It dries quickly and has that wonderful outdoors smell.
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by mandyk
After washing, I put a sheet on the grass nd then the quilt backing side up. It dries quickly and has that wonderful outdoors smell.
This would be great, but between the squirrels and the birds I wouldn't dare.
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Old 09-16-2011, 02:13 PM
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I dry until just damp and then lay them out to finish drying.
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