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Thread: make your own Heavy Starch

  1. #1
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    Did you know that you can make your own heavy duty spray starch for under .20 cents ?! Here's a simple, do it yourself recipe.

    1/4 c. Corn Starch
    1/2 c. Cold water
    1 qt Boiling Water

    Dissolve the cornstarch in the cold water, stirring well. Pour dissolved starch mix into boiling water, bring to boil, cook 2 minutes over medium heat. Remove from heat, cool. This makes a Heavy Starch, great for laundry or crafts.

    ****If you plan on storing this for any length of time, add 1 Tbs. of Lemon Juice as a preservative. It will prevent spoilage/mold.***

  2. #2
    Super Member Rebecca VLQ's Avatar
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    Ohhhh jacquie! You rock! I love make-at-home stuff like this! :D

  3. #3
    DJ
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    Would you mix this 50/50 to put in a spray bottle or use full-strength? Thanks for sharing!

  4. #4
    Super Member Glassquilt's Avatar
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    Another starch - not heavy
    1Tbs. Elmer's School Glue
    3 C. Warm Water

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ
    Would you mix this 50/50 to put in a spray bottle or use full-strength? Thanks for sharing!
    to use as a spray starch for fabric you are going to cut and sew through this is what I would do...

    the heavy stuff is great to either brush or spray on!

  6. #6
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    I made my own starch this weekend, thanks to all the ladies here. I wanted to starch some yardage and decided I didn't want to spray it. So got a container. mixed up cornstarch and water (cold from the hose!) and dipped my fabrics in, making sure they were well coated. Squeezed them out gently and put on clothes line to drip dry - smoothing them out. I now have starched fabric which needs very little ironing because it dried flat on the line. (Oh - I had previously washed and dried the fabric in the dryer for shrinkage and to get rid of the sizing.)

    Dumped the excess starch on the grass, sprayed out the container, and done!

    The only thing I think I would do different next time is make the starch heavier.

    Am using the fabric very soon, if I can ever stop goofing up on my current project!

  7. #7
    Super Member clem55's Avatar
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    My mom always made laundry starch that way, and while I am not positive, I think she used to add a small piece of something called bluing. It made the whites and colors brighter. She made her own lye soap for laundry too!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by clem55
    My mom always made laundry starch that way, and while I am not positive, I think she used to add a small piece of something called bluing. It made the whites and colors brighter. She made her own lye soap for laundry too!!
    yes...bluing...I am not sure if we can find that any more..but it sure worked great for the whites...

  9. #9
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    thanks for the recipe!

  10. #10
    Junior Member judord's Avatar
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    Oh, thank you so much. I can remember when spray starch came in. It was such a blessing, but it is good to have this old recipe also. Love it. :thumbup:

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    Thanks!!

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    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    I have seen blueing in the laundry aisle of grocery stores. It's in such a small bottle, it's easy to overlook. Inexpensive too.

  13. #13
    Super Member EasyPeezy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaciqltznok
    Did you know that you can make your own heavy duty spray starch for under .20 cents ?! Here's a simple, do it yourself recipe.

    1/4 c. Corn Starch
    1/2 c. Cold water
    1 qt Boiling Water

    Dissolve the cornstarch in the cold water, stirring well. Pour dissolved starch mix into boiling water, bring to boil, cook 2 minutes over medium heat. Remove from heat, cool. This makes a Heavy Starch, great for laundry or crafts.

    ****If you plan on storing this for any length of time, add 1 Tbs. of Lemon Juice as a preservative. It will prevent spoilage/mold.***
    That's what I use too but I've never boiled it. Does boiling keeps it from separating? Instead of lemon juice, vinegar would probably work too.

  14. #14
    Super Member EasyPeezy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sewmary
    I made my own starch this weekend, thanks to all the ladies here. I wanted to starch some yardage and decided I didn't want to spray it. So got a container. mixed up cornstarch and water (cold from the hose!) and dipped my fabrics in, making sure they were well coated. Squeezed them out gently and put on clothes line to drip dry - smoothing them out. I now have starched fabric which needs very little ironing because it dried flat on the line. (Oh - I had previously washed and dried the fabric in the dryer for shrinkage and to get rid of the sizing.)

    Dumped the excess starch on the grass, sprayed out the container, and
    done!

    The only thing I think I would do different next time is make the starch heavier.

    Am using the fabric very soon, if I can ever stop goofing up on my current project!
    If you don't have time to iron all your fabric you can put it in a ziploc bag
    and put it in the fridge for a day or two or in the freezer for long period.
    I've never used the freezer myself but that's what Anita Grossman said in
    her article about starch. I like to put my starched fabric overnight in the
    fridge regardless of time. It helps distribute the starch more evenly.

  15. #15
    e4
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    Boiling cooks the starch so that it swells - like making gravy. It may still separate a little bit, but usually not much. This actually works better than just using cold starch - usually gives a smoother, stiffer finish and doesn't flake as much. Letting the fabric set for a while will allow the starch to penetrate better. Just remember, bugs like starch so you really shouldn't store fabrics pre-starched unless you know you are going to use them fairly soon.

  16. #16
    Super Member EasyPeezy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by e4
    Boiling cooks the starch so that it swells - like making gravy. It may still separate a little bit, but usually not much. This actually works better than just using cold starch - usually gives a smoother, stiffer finish and doesn't flake as much. Letting the fabric set for a while will allow the starch to penetrate better. Just remember, bugs like starch so you really shouldn't store fabrics pre-starched unless you know you are going to use them fairly soon.
    I use boiling water but I just don't cook it for 2 mins. I suppose cooking it for 2 mins would make it thicker too. No?
    Flaking doesn't bother me. It all gets washed afterwards. However, I remove any big lump of cornstarch if I see any.

  17. #17
    Super Member LivelyLady's Avatar
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    Thank you so much! I use a lot of starch and what a savings this will be :thumbup:

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    Quote Originally Posted by jaciqltznok
    Quote Originally Posted by clem55
    My mom always made laundry starch that way, and while I am not positive, I think she used to add a small piece of something called bluing. It made the whites and colors brighter. She made her own lye soap for laundry too!!
    yes...bluing...I am not sure if we can find that any more..but it sure worked great for the whites...
    Blueing is readily available. People who show dogs use it to brighten white markings (as do horse people from what I understand). I don't know anyone who uses it in laundry but I know literally hundreds who use it on their show dogs. LOL!

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    Quote Originally Posted by MsEithne
    Quote Originally Posted by jaciqltznok
    Quote Originally Posted by clem55
    My mom always made laundry starch that way, and while I am not positive, I think she used to add a small piece of something called bluing. It made the whites and colors brighter. She made her own lye soap for laundry too!!
    yes...bluing...I am not sure if we can find that any more..but it sure worked great for the whites...
    Blueing is readily available. People who show dogs use it to brighten white markings (as do horse people from what I understand). I don't know anyone who uses it in laundry but I know literally hundreds who use it on their show dogs. LOL!
    never used laundry bluing for my dog, but used that Silver shampoo from the beauty supply!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by EasyPeezy
    That's what I use too but I've never boiled it. Does boiling keeps it from separating? Instead of lemon juice, vinegar would probably work too.
    Yes, cooking the starch helps the starch granules absorb the liquid and stabilises the solution.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Cosy's Avatar
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    A bit of a de-rail:
    My grandmother would use a bit of bluing in the final rinse after shampooing her beautiful white hair, just enough to tint the water a very pale blue. the origin of the phrase, "blue haired ladies"
    And always in the rinse water of the "lily white" batch of laundry, a little darker blue. That stuff is potent, even more so than food coloring.
    And just for fun,
    "In a glass or plastic bowl, put some pieces of coal, coke (charcoal-like substance, charcoal, porous brick, tile, cement or sponge.
    Day 1: Over the base material, pour two tablespoons of water, two of table salt (iodized or plain) and two of Mrs. Stewart's Bluing.

    Day 2: Add two more tablespoons of salt.

    Day 3: Pour into the bottom of the bowl (not directly on the base material) two tablespoons each of salt, water, and Mrs. Stewart's Bluing, and then add a few drops of mercurochrome, vegetable coloring or ink to each piece.

    By this time a beautiful flower-like growth should have appeared. If all the conditions are not ideal, it may be necessary to add two tablespoons of household ammonia to aid the growth. A free circulation of air is necessary, and these formations will develop better where the air is dry.

    To keep it growing: Add more MSB, salt and water from time to time. It will "bloom" indefinitely into beautiful rosebuds, coral and crystal. Try it!" From Mrs. Stewarts Bluing website. for some dumb reason (the faulty finger/keyboard interface), I couldn't do a direct link.
    That bottle of blueing was a staple at our house,and I have made many a crystal garden. Wonder if I still have a bottle in the deep recesses? I should start another.
    and I have cooked many a kettle of Faultless starch for my dad's and brothers' dress shirts before the days of perma press.

  22. #22
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    Cosy - Thanks for the trip down memory lane! I remember growing crystals from coal but didn't remember how to do it so this is great. I'm going to see if I can round up the ingredients to start one to show my grand kids.

  23. #23

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    thank you for the info. Just ran out of starch.

  24. #24
    Junior Member SherryCat's Avatar
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    If you store the starch in the frig, would that prevent the mold?

  25. #25
    Senior Member janell2009's Avatar
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    Remember the older "blue haired" ladies ... as you age you loose the ability to see the color blue, blue over rides yellow, which in the old days when water was bad etc, white haired ladies would develop a yellow cast, that is why they put blue in it. Would also work for dogs, horses, cows, any hairs you want the yellow neutralized. hehehehe

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