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Thread: Washing embroidery... colour bleeding?

  1. #1
    Super Member Baren*eh*ked_canadian's Avatar
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    Ok, this may seem like an ignorant question, but you ladies who embroider onto quilt blocks, can the quilt be properly laundered after that?

    I mean, does the embroidery thread or floss tend to bleed colour onto your quilt?
    I'm planning on embroidering a monogram onto the center block of my mariner's compass that I'm working on. It's a commission, and it's for a gift for someone special, so the last thing I want is for the recipiant to wash her quilt and it gets ruined because of the embroidery floss...
    I will be using DMC floss, if it changes anything. Should I soak my floss in mr. clean or somethign else first just to be sure?
    My embroidery will be a dark-ish royal blue, on a white center....
    Please give me your opinions and other options if you can think of something that could help me out.
    Thanks in advance :)

  2. #2
    Senior Member AtHomeSewing's Avatar
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    I've never used DMC, I run a commercial embroidery machine...however the answer to your question lies in the type of thread. Rayon embroidery thread can bleed a little bit in some colors (esp. red), however the bleed will generally come out if washed a second time. Polyester embroidery threads will not bleed, even if washed in harsh industrial chemicals.

    Hope this helps.

    Connie

  3. #3
    Power Poster sewnsewer2's Avatar
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    Sorry to say, but yes DMC does bleed. I would use 100% polyester thread.
    I did a cross stitch once that bled with the DMC.

  4. #4
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    And blue DMC is almost as bad as red when it comes to bleeding.

  5. #5
    Super Member Baren*eh*ked_canadian's Avatar
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    Ack, thanks for the heads up!
    Maybe what I will do is instead of making bold letting and filling it in with colour, I will do an outline, using regular thread, just using two or three threads at once...

    Sort of like if I used this lettering...


    That's how I was planning on stitching my label on the back, but with regular text, none of this fancy script like the front.

    [img]http://www.needlenthread.com/Images/...nogram_1_g.gif[/img]

  6. #6
    Power Poster Mousie's Avatar
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    everything I read about embroidery flosses, reccommends that you soak a little, and then press with a cloth, kind of like fabrics, before you stitch.

  7. #7
    Power Poster RedGarnet222's Avatar
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    I have used embroidery thread for years that doesn't bleed. Huh .... ??? It says boilfast on it though, maybe that is the secret.

    That being said, I would do a samll mock up of it and wash it to try it out so you would know for sure it is safe. That beauriful quilt does not need to be ruined after all your nice work.

  8. #8
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    There was a recent thread on this topic that had some really useful information in it; worth searching for. I can't remember everything, but apparently safety laws for workers have changed some of the dyes and mordants that can be used in embroidery thread (chemical exposures), so many of the newer embroidery threads are not as colorfast as the old ones. Also, I believe many people now pre-wash their embroidery thread. It might be worthwhile to use Retayne to do this, similar to how it would be used for a fabric.

  9. #9
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    I wouldn't toss out your idea just yet. Do a little test with your thread and fabric ...just soak together in a bowl of water. If it bleeds, you can soak the thread in retayne...then do another test.

    Good luck...sounds lovely, can't wait to see it!

  10. #10
    Super Member Marcia's Avatar
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    I recently used some red DMC for a hand blanket stitch on a quilt and it bled like crazy and stained my top. I was not able to get the color out and was so disappointed that I have not touched the quilt since---and the sad thing about it is that it is a round robin quilt so the other blocks were all from my friends.

  11. #11
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcia
    I recently used some red DMC for a hand blanket stitch on a quilt and it bled like crazy and stained my top. I was not able to get the color out and was so disappointed that I have not touched the quilt since---and the sad thing about it is that it is a round robin quilt so the other blocks were all from my friends.
    If you haven't already, try washing it several times in Synthrapol. That might get it out.

  12. #12
    pal
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    I embroidered a tablecloth that came in a kit with special thread that was on a "spool". It was completely done in a satin stitch. I took it to the
    dry cleaners after it was finished so that it would look fresh when I gave it
    as a gift. The red ran all over the cloth - the dry cleaner never said a word and when I got it home I actually cried. I took it back to the cleaners and somehow they got every drop of red out of it. It was all
    primary colors, yet only the red ran. I think, were I to do that again, I would make a test patch and pour boiling water over it.

  13. #13
    pal
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    P.S. just got out the thread. It doesn't even look like embroidery thread, it looks more like fine crochet thread, the kind used for doilies.

  14. #14
    Super Member Marcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99
    Quote Originally Posted by Marcia
    I recently used some red DMC for a hand blanket stitch on a quilt and it bled like crazy and stained my top. I was not able to get the color out and was so disappointed that I have not touched the quilt since---and the sad thing about it is that it is a round robin quilt so the other blocks were all from my friends.
    If you haven't already, try washing it several times in Synthrapol. That might get it out.
    Thanks--I have tried that and everything else I can think of. It is faded to a pale pink now and I just can't seem to get the rest of it out. I am so irritated with it that I put it away in the middle of quilting it. I doubt I will ever finish it.

  15. #15
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    I have embroidered about a zillion things with DMC floss. Red is the only color I have ever had a problem with. Now, I always wash anything wtih red thread with a color catcher the first time I wash it. It never seems to be a problem after the first time.

    Embroider and enjoy.

  16. #16
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    hand or machine? i've done hand for years (45) and never had a bleeding problem. neither did mom who taught me. quite a few years now i've used dmc with no troubles. now on my quilts, i wash before putting on my quilt, but i do that mainly to get tracing pencil to wash out... i hope this answers you :D

  17. #17
    Hunnib's Avatar
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    That's the reason I use Isacord polyester thread for machine embroidery. Here's a link to learn about it: http://www.amann.com/en/embroidery-threads/isacord.html

    I never have to worry about colors bleeding and can wash items embroidered with it with clorox and have many times. The thread is comparable to high sheen nylon and that's absolutely all I use for embroidery. I did a lot of research before I decided on a brand to stock my new sewing room. My son purchased the entire color spectrum for me. I think you will be satisfied with it if you try it.

  18. #18
    Super Member ConnieF's Avatar
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    Hi About the DMC floss. I have heard red and the dark colors sometimes do run...
    You can if you are not sure like one of the other ladies said do a sample. Then you will know.
    If you are using cotton for the quilt, I subjest you use a cotton emb thread too. I use Rayon and some poly on my emb machine but never hand emb with it....

    Best of luck with it.... Beatiful C thats my inital :9)

  19. #19
    Super Member Baren*eh*ked_canadian's Avatar
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    It was hand embroidery. I actually used normal thread, just to be safe. It took 8 times longer, lol, but it does look nice. I used 4 strands of standard polyester thread.

  20. #20
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    I asked that question at the crayon class and the teacher said that many threads run but DMC isn't supposed to. (I asked what about "RUN DMC"? Nobody got it.)

  21. #21
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    Presencia embroidery floss will not bleed. It cost more but worth it. DMC's quality is not as good as it use to be. I have some of my grandmother's DMC floss and it does not bleed, the same color in a new skien bleeds!

  22. #22

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    I have two solutions first one is I use Shout color catcher I use it in my wash and it keeps colors from fading on each other you can find it near the fabric softners.

    The other is something I learned when I started cross stitching it was given to me by my local stitch and frame shop. I soak all my dark shorts and pants in vinger & water to set the color and they keep their color longer. I just made my grandson a super hero quilt using red as my sashing and backing and I used this method to set the red color. But I also put a shout color catcher in my wash and it does the job no more pink tee shirts or underwear.

    1. Before you wash your needlework (this works for fabric also) set the color in a solution of 1/2 cup vinegar to one gallon of water.
    2. Soak 10 minutes or longer.
    3. Rinse
    4. Wash needlework in a small amount of Woolite.
    5. Rinsse thoroughly. Soap left in needlework wil turn brown when pressed.
    6. Place 1/2 teaspoon vinegar in final rinse water to remove soap residue and give floss a sheen.
    7. Roll needlework in a white towel. Do not wring or squeeze.
    8. Lay needlework right side down on a white towel. Begin pressing while still wet with a dry iron. Press until dry. Do not press needlework on the right side, always press on the back.

    If anyone would like a complete copy of these instructions just let me know I will be glad to send it to you.

    This is my first time on your message board.


  23. #23
    Super Member Baren*eh*ked_canadian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadQuilter
    I asked that question at the crayon class and the teacher said that many threads run but DMC isn't supposed to. (I asked what about "RUN DMC"? Nobody got it.)

    ROFL!!!!!!!!!!

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