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vintage/antique quilts are not always crinkled/ puckered

vintage/antique quilts are not always crinkled/ puckered

Old 03-11-2015, 05:54 AM
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Default vintage/antique quilts are not always crinkled/ puckered

Many of the quilts made for everyday use were made from used clothing or linens, hence had been washed many times, hence did not pucker when made into a quilt.

So - in my mind - puckery and vintage - do not always go together.
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Old 03-11-2015, 06:00 AM
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I found that most quilts were made from feed sacks and they did pucker after time. I have a quilt that my Grandmother's Aunt pieced. Definitely made from feed sacks. Not the best pieced workmanship but it is the only antique quilt I have and I treasure it.
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Old 03-11-2015, 06:08 AM
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ALL of the quilts that I inherited from my husband's mother are crinkled/puckered. Some were even made by her mother. I do not think that she ever bought any fabric expressly for quilt, but used leftover feedsack fabric from her 5 daughters clothing, or used clothing or linens. I think that it was the batting that she used - all cotton I believe.
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Old 03-11-2015, 06:15 AM
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I have two old quilts, a Mennonite 9-patch and a DWR, both somewhat crinkly and look like they are made from leftover clothing - but I am not going to open them up and peek at the batting!!! I assume it is cotton batting, and cotton thread, and maybe the thread shrunk too?

I am getting the DWR to a review next month and I will see what they think.
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Old 03-11-2015, 06:20 AM
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All of the old cotton quilts I have seen and the ones made by my grandmothers are all puckered. All of the quilts that my grandmother's and great-grandmothers made were from old clothes. The only quilts not puckered were the ones my paternal grandmother made with polyester tops and backing without any batting.
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Old 03-11-2015, 07:01 AM
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Does thread shrink?
I wash all fabric before I use it but all my quilts pucker.
I use 80/20 batting.
I don't mind the puckering but would like to know what is shrinking.
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Old 03-11-2015, 07:20 AM
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I'm in line to inherit a quilt made by my great-great grandmother for her daughter, my great-grandmother. It is not puckered. It's a checkerboard red-and-white quilt, the white blocks are all hand-embroidered state birds. It has very minimal quilting. I don't know why it never puckered; I'm just happy as a clam that I will have something from Great-Great Gram.

I have a 5-generation picture of me at age 3: Me, Mom, Grandma, Great-Gram, and Great-Great Gram. I think when the quilt passes to me, I might try to find some way of displaying the quilt and the picture together.
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Old 03-11-2015, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Rose Marie View Post
Does thread shrink?
I wash all fabric before I use it but all my quilts pucker.
I use 80/20 batting.
I don't mind the puckering but would like to know what is shrinking.
The batting is 80% cotton and that is what is shrinking to make the puckers. If you don't want puckers, you need to either use a polyester batting or use a natural batting that can be pre-shrunk (such as Warm and Natural). Check online and on the batting package to make sure that a batting can be pre-shrunk without falling apart; some cannot.

Most vintage quilts shrank because cotton batting was used in almost all of them. Vintage cotton batting could not be pre-shrunk because there was nothing to hold the cotton together when wet; that was what the quilting lines were for. Current manufacturing processes allow certain types of cotton (and wool) batting to be pre-shrunk. Needlepunching through scrim, for example, holds the batting together while you wash and dry to pre-shrink. Some bonding processes (heat or chemical bonding) may allow it also, but not necessarily. If you try to pre-shrink a batting that cannot withstand water on its own, you will end up with a sodden mess.
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Old 03-11-2015, 12:30 PM
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I think one of the reasons old quilts didn't shrink was because they weren't put in a dryer, but instead hung on a line where the weight from the wet fabric and batting pulled a lot of the wrinkles out. I was told, many years ago, by the elderly daughter of an Wisconsin farmer, circa late 1800s, that wool was the batting of choice, usually an old blanket, and that the quilts were tied so that in the spring they could be "undone", the wool could be aired out to freshen it up, and the fabric could be washed. Can you imagine having to do that today? No wonder they had so many quilting bee's.
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Old 03-11-2015, 12:59 PM
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The ones I had used old washed blankets for the fill.
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