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Thread: Those of you who have made a quilt from men's ties,

  1. #1
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Question Those of you who have made a quilt from men's ties,

    have you washed the ties before taking them apart? Or after taking them apart? And do you have any tips for controlling dye bleeding and wrinkling?

    I ask because I have a ton of ties I got online from eBay several years ago with very ambitious plans. Took some red ties apart a la Sandy Bonsib and hand-washed the resulting silk in my stainless steel sink. First off, the bleeding was really, really bad. Second, when I went to iron the silk, it was hard to manage because of its slipperiness. Also, I got some really off-putting odors from ironing.

    Found a bolt of Pellon 906F on Amazon prime for $45, so I'm thinking I should at least prepare these ties for a quilt before we move to another state (sometime next year, hopefully). At least then I won't have to explain to my dh what that huge and heavy cardboard box that has been sitting around for years contains....

  2. #2
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    Have not used ties before but that off putting odor may be from the different men's cologne that was worn. Many men use cologne as a last step before they went out the door and it drips on the cologne or they touch it to straighten it up. The oils have a tendency to build up in the fabric. That stuff is hard to get out. When I go to estate sales I try to avoid the heavy smelling clothes but what I do get goes straight into the washer in hot water sometimes twice with ammonia or vinegar in the wash. That happens often with men's dress shirts an ladies dresses and blouses.

  3. #3
    Super Member sewwhat85's Avatar
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    I also think that the smell could be from the dry cleaning chemicals
    Nancy

  4. #4
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    I put my ties in the washer with gentle soap on the delicate cycle. Other then the ties ending up tangled, they came out fine. I hung them on the line to dry and I did not take them apart until after they were dry.

  5. #5
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    I always launder after deconstruction, that way any lint, soil inside is removed. Then use a lightweight fusible stabilizer and a press cloth to control the ( slipperiness) the stabilizer also aides with cutting.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  6. #6
    Power Poster ube quilting's Avatar
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    I would wash or soak gently and see how each tie reacts and use only those that played nice in the water, no shrinking or bleeding or fraying or wrinkling.
    peace

    EDIT: I mant to add that washing them first may save a step in prepping them. If they don't come out of the wash okay, don't bother to take them apart.
    Last edited by ube quilting; 12-30-2014 at 07:23 PM.
    no act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. Aesop

  7. #7
    Super Member sinceresissy's Avatar
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    I did not wash my dad's bow ties. They were silky and didn't look dirty. I took them apart appliqued them onto a black silky material that was probably rayon. It is a quilt that is not intended to washed. I was going to try to make a crazy quilt but I have not mastered the embroidery process so these cut in half bow ties made a fan on a 12' square then I sewed those squares together. It came out really pretty and if I knew how to post a picture I would.

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    I ripped apart the ties then washed in woolite and hung to dry on a line outside. It was in the summer so they dried quickly. When they were dry, I rolled them up into little swiss rolls and tied with knitting yarn so I could toss them all together in a bin. Ties behave like empty wire coat hangers and tangle very quickly. When ironing them onto fusible, I could tell which ties were my dads and which ties were my grandfathers. So I know they retain the oils of the wearer. Before you purchase a bolt of fusible. Test a small sample on the silk ties. Not all fusible sticks to silk.

  9. #9
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Okay, I have a load of ties in the washing machine (in laundry bags to hopefully limit tangling). I figure I'll wash them first, then take them apart, and then maybe wash them again before ironing to fusible.

    What I am wondering is, has anyone machine dried the ties? I want the finished quilt to be washable. I'm thinking the silk should not be damaged by machine drying, but maybe some of it will shrink? I know the interior interfacing will shrink. Hmmmm.... Maybe I should line dry before taking them apart and machine dry only after I wash them after those interfacings have been removed. Thoughts?

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    I think the trouble with machine drying them is that they will all knot together like wire coathangers. I dried mine outdoors by hanging over a fence. Silk would dry very quickly.

  11. #11
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Okay, an update on what I have learned so far.

    Machine washing is the way to go, at least for me. I have a small front-loader, though. Not sure I would want to use a top-loader with a central agitator to wash ties, as it seems to me there would be a lot of abrasion and tangling.

    I bought four $1 laundry bags at Walmart and placed 10 ties in each bag. First I washed 2 bags at a time (all similar color) on delicate in 140-degree water, All Free and Synthrapol in the wash cycle, with vinegar in rinse cycle. Was not convinced I had gotten all the odors out, though, so I got rougher. Re-washed 4 bags at a time on a regular machine cycle, 160-degree water, All Free and Synthrapol, vinegar in rinse. Smelled much better after this. I noticed a lot of red dye in the water that I had not noticed in the less-hot wash, and one of the red ties came out looking faded after this wash. Tossed the 4 laundry bags in the dryer with a couple of towels.

    I am going to adjust my method next time. I think that the regular machine cycle plus regular drying cycle plus doing 4 laundry bags of 10 ties each created too much abrasion on the silk. Next time I will cut back to two laundry bags of 10 ties each per load, and I will change from the regular cycle to a fast cycle (and if that causes too much abrasion, perhaps back to a more delicate cycle). I will skip the dryer and just drape the ties over my ironing board to dry.

    I am finding it takes a *long* time to completely dis-assemble a tie. This will give me something to do while I watch tv at night.

  12. #12
    Member Lauray's Avatar
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    Thank you for reporting your progress. I have a box of ties to tackle and your information is much appreciated.

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