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Thread: Fabric weight

  1. #1
    Senior Member sew4nin's Avatar
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    Fabric weight

    How does everyone determine if a fabric is too thin to use in a quilt? I have been doing a lot of buying and trading recently and I have a stack of fabric and scraps that I am not sure about.
    I would love to hear what others do.
    Thanks for the input.

  2. #2
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    if you think it is too thin, you can always iron on a thin interfacing, or use it for applique.
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  3. #3
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    I have often wondered this. I am a big fan of fat quarters. It seems the quality of fat quarters is diverse. Im learning to be a bit more pickey. adding an interfacing piece is a great idea! thanks Paper Princess

  4. #4
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Just go by how it feels when you handle it, or whether you can see through it. There is a device you can buy that will count the threads for you.

  5. #5
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    I have fabric from my beginning quilting days 30 years ago. Much of this was apparently made in the USA in those days, and, to me, has a more substantial feel than some fabrics do today. When in doubt over a new piece, I compare the feel to those older ones.

    Jan in VA
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  6. #6
    Super Member Havplenty's Avatar
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    when you look at a piece of fabric through some good light you can usually see the weave and if there is a lot or little space between the threads. when you are trading fabrics it's hard to control the quality you get in return but when you purchase fabrics, the quality you buy is all up to you. most all of my fabrics are lqs quality, i refuse to buy thin fabrics. i have received some fabrics (in trading) so thin i can't help but wonder where these fabrics are being purchased. i was discussing this in my lqs today.

    interfacing thin fabrics is certainly an option. whether you feel it is worth it is up to you. i had received some dyed ethnic fabrics from overseas that was loosely woven but i am familiar with this type weave so i have started interfacing them for use. the small pieces i may receive in trade are not worth my time to interface for quilt use so i find other projects for them. i was tossing them in the trash at one time but not any more.

    i am trading fabric squares with 2 different online groups with several international swappers so i don't know yet what quality i will be getting. but if i get some thin pieces i really like and want to put in my psq's i will surely interface them.
    Last edited by Havplenty; 07-07-2012 at 07:20 PM.
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  7. #7
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I carry a piece of high quality with me , and do the feel test . Sometimes its very apparent , like you can read the newspaper through it. Sometimes its made to appear subtantial with finishes.. so its it too stiff for the thickness of the fabric.

  8. #8
    Senior Member sew4nin's Avatar
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    Thank you for all your suggestions. I did try interfacing, but then the piece seemed too thick. I thought I used the thinnest interfacing. Maybe I will just give the pieces to Goodwill.

  9. #9
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    The bottom line is - what is the fabric intended for?

    I have some thin, see-through tightly woven cotton fabric that I bought for a baptismal gown - the fabric was $12.00 a yard 25 years ago!

    It is difficult to put in words exactly what we mean - I think of Kona cottons as 'beefy/sturdy/coarse' - compared to many of the other 'quilting cottons' I have.

    I like to put similar 'weight/weave' fabrics in one top. It probably doesn't make that much difference in the long run, but it's what I prefer to do.

    A lot of the woven cotton fabrics that were used for aprons and housedresses (1940-1960) seem to be appropriate for use in quilts now.

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