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Thread: To starch or not to starch?

  1. #26
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    I used to wash with laundry soap and do two rinses due to asthma. I got a lot of strings, and yes, I do know how to prevent that, but it all takes time. So now, I just do a "rinse and spin." It seems to be enough to remove chemicals, shrink the fabric and have it ready to go.
    No starch until ready to use...it will draw silverfish. Ugh!
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  2. #27
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    I pre-wash all my fabric. I don't want to breathe the chemicals, and I don't want any bleed or shrinkage surprises. I hand applique and buy a lot of pre-cuts because i don't use a lot of one fabric. I wash in a bowl by dunking up and down with soap in the water. I rinse the same way and lay on a towel to dry. If I'm in a hurry for one, I will press it dry.

  3. #28
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
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    Never prewash starch more often
    Brother (XL-3500i, CV3550, SQ-9050, Dreamweaver XE6200D), Juki MO-2000QVP, Handiquilter Avante

  4. #29
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    I started washing all my fabrics due to the chemicals destroying my fingernails and making my finger tips sensitive. I even wash pre-cuts because of the chemicals. (I either put them in a salad spinner or a lingerie bag if washing clothes.) They dry quickly if you put them out of a towel or rack.
    Used to steam iron only, but then started reading on here about the better results coming from use of Fabric Sizing, Best Press, or starch. So started one after the other finally settled on spray starch works the best for me. Thought about trying the heavy starch that you cook up but a lot of it would just go to waste.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltingcandy View Post
    I started washing all my fabrics due to the chemicals destroying my fingernails and making my finger tips sensitive. I even wash pre-cuts because of the chemicals. (I either put them in a salad spinner or a lingerie bag if washing clothes.) They dry quickly if you put them out of a towel or rack.
    Used to steam iron only, but then started reading on here about the better results coming from use of Fabric Sizing, Best Press, or starch. So started one after the other finally settled on spray starch works the best for me. Thought about trying the heavy starch that you cook up but a lot of it would just go to waste.

    The homemade cooked starch is what I use. I do not worry about it going to waste, as I am only using a Tablespoon or so of cornstarch and a little electricity to make it, my cost is under 50 cents per batch. I use a refillable spray bottle for it.
    Attending University. I will graduate a year after my son and year before my daughter.

  6. #31
    Super Member peaceandjoy's Avatar
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    I've never prewashed a thing, except when required for a swap.

    Just finished Bonnie Hunter's Talkin' Turkey (red and neutral quilt). When the time comes for it to be washed, I might throw some color catchers in with it, just in case.

    Starching (or Best Press) helps when I am doing small blocks - 365 blocks or anything 6" or less with lots of pieces (Farm Girl Vintage, for example). I find it helps with accuracy tiny pieces.

    After the amount of loose thread trimming I did on Talkin' Turkey to get it ready to hand off to the LA, I'm thinking I might start starching everything as I use it.

  7. #32
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    If I wash in my washing machine I really don’t know if it bled or not. Nor do I know if it is finished bleeding. Do you prewash by hand so you can see what is happening?

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by csstexas View Post
    If I wash in my washing machine I really don’t know if it bled or not. Nor do I know if it is finished bleeding. Do you prewash by hand so you can see what is happening?
    if you use a color catcher sheet in the wash, it will catch dyes floating in the water. Then you can determine if the fabric is a bleeder.

  9. #34
    Super Member EmiliasNana's Avatar
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    Rarely prewash............only dark yardage. I starch all fabric except precuts prior to cutting and never use steam once the pieces have been cut.
    Because I spray baste, I wash all my quilts in Sythrapol and use Color Catchers and so far have never had a bleeder on the quilt..........fingers crossed.

  10. #35
    Super Member Daylesewblessed's Avatar
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    I pre-wash everything, one yard or less in the sink, soaking in Dawn if necessary. If necessary, I use Retayne to set the dye, which happens quite often. One the rare occasion that Retayne doesn't work, the fabric is discarded.

    My experience in Project Linus: A lady made a beautiful quilt top of bright colors, which she handed off to another blanketeer for quilting. After quilting and binding, the quilter washed the quilt. The bright colors bled onto the light colors. Both people felt awful. And the quilt looked terrible.

  11. #36
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    I never prewash. Sometimes I use best press. I love to starch my binding.

    I always wash my quilts when I'm finished. Even when gifting. I love to see it pucker when washed and dried. I always use a color catcher in my wash with my quilts. Never had a problem.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by csstexas View Post
    If I wash in my washing machine I really donít know if it bled or not. Nor do I know if it is finished bleeding. Do you prewash by hand so you can see what is happening?
    I soak some of each new fabric in warm water in the bathroom sink for a few minutes while I do other things. The non-bleeders get washed together (I still use one color catcher). The bleeders get a repeat soak , each one separately. If the bleeding subsides but is still noticeable, I will wash them together with 3 color catchers. Any that don't stop bleeding in the sink no matter what, I wash by itself with 3 color catchers, then soak in the sink again to see if that did the trick. If not, I trash it. This is why I only buy 1/4 yd of reds, deep purples, or black. I'd rather waste $3-4 than $10-12 than be forever sorry I didn't check colorfastness.

    Starch? Yes. I love, love, love the crispness and scent of starched fabric. I just iron and say "aaaah, niiiiice!" Okay, am I weird?

  13. #38
    Junior Member TAMARATJO's Avatar
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    I always prewash. I also spray with best press when ironing my prewashed fabric. I don't know that I have the starching thing down yet. Maybe I don't use enough, but I am not willing to soak fabric in a bucket of starch.

  14. #39
    Junior Member seazteddy's Avatar
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    I thank you all, i guess I'll do whatever I want to. i think washing the reds is a good idea.

  15. #40
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    I prewash with a color catcher and starch when I press.

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