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Thread: one piece large backing

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    one piece large backing

    I purchased backing material for a queen sized quilt in the large sized backing, one piece. Since all the rest of the fabric in the quilt has been washed, should I wash this backing? I have always washed all my fabrics before using. It would be very hard to iron such a large piece after washing and drying. I would like to keep it as one piece, so don't want to cut into smaller pieces to back this quilt. My question is, should I use it as is or wash & dry and struggle with the ironing? Any suggestions.
    An old saying that nothing is perfect in God's World justifies any mistake I make in my quilts, some on purpose and some by accident..

  2. #2
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    I would wash it. If it shrinks unevenly later, it may make your quilt wonky
    Nancy in western NY
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  3. #3
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    The way I iron a large backing is to fold in half. Iron one side without pressing the fold. Open up enough to get to the fold,iron that and then refold, turn over and iron the other side.

  4. #4
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    How do you plan to do the quilting? I quilt on a longarm, and I always wash my fabrics. I take them out of the dryer before they get very wrinkled, and then I stretch the backing on the frame. If there are wrinkles, a spritz of water and a tightening of the frame get them out quickly. If you're using a longarm, you can try this method. If you're sending the quilt to a longarmer, check with her to see if she's willing to do this. It does take a little more time to let the backing dry before advancing it and spritzing again.

  5. #5
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    I was all my wide backing, and if I have DH help me fold it right away, get very little wrinkling.

    I've found it shrinks up quite a bit, and will straighten back out if it was stretched off grain while being rolled on to the bolt (and they very often are).

    I can fit about 7 yards of wide backing in my washer and dryer. I buy it in bulk when on sale.
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

  6. #6
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    I use wide backing all the time. I do tend to prewash them- mainly because they often have large- deep set wrinkles in them due to being folded & wrapped on the bolt. I prewash as usual then put in dryer, taking it out when *Almost* dry. Then I drape it over my frame to finish drying. Laying it out before it’s completely dry usually keeps it fairly wrinkle free so I don’t have to iron it.
    When you remove it from the washer give it a good shake, - fluff , so it doesn’t try to dry in a big ball. This method has worked for me for many years. I don’t think I’ve pieced a back in at least 12 years.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  7. #7
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    I always wash all of my fabrics and since you have washed the fabrics for the top I think it would be best to wash the backing fabrics. I agree with "Eva Knight" on a good way to iron it.

  8. #8
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    That works for me, too.
    A quilt is like a good life. It's full of mistakes, but, in the end, it looks pretty good.

  9. #9
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I wash all my fabrics before using. Backing fabrics also. I dry each piece over a yard by itself, remove after dryer runs on cool down and immediately fold with a ruler. I only have to iron a few places.
    Another Phyllis
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  10. #10
    Super Member maryb119's Avatar
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    I wash everything. If it is going to shrink, I want it do shrink before I put it in a quilt.

  11. #11
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    I don't wash anymore unless the fabric is bright pink or red or batik. I test a small section to see if it might run. I don't usually wash backings because, unless I spray starch heavily, they tend to pucker more when washed. Remember also that your batting will shrink a bit when washed. I often wash the whole quilt when finished and like the look afterwards.

  12. #12
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    I wash my 108" backing and try to take it out of the dryer the minute it stops. I folded it in thirds to iron it. Not an easy task, but worth it in the long run. If the other fabrics in the quilt have been washed and the backing has not, it may distort the whole thing. Not my favorite part of making a quilt, but IMHO, a necessary part.

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