Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Page 1 of 3 1 2 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 67

Thread: Washing fabric

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Posts
    12

    Washing fabric

    Good Morning. Newbie (fairly) to quilting and I would love to hear from y'all about washing fabric before starting a quilt or not? I find it to be a pain but I'm scared of colors running after the quilt is done. I've just finished a red and white quilt and am scared that the dark red will bleed. Thought I buy a detergent specifically for cold wash. What do you do?

  2. #2
    Super Member MaryStoaks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    La Quinta, CA
    Posts
    3,925
    When I wash fabric I wash it in hot water with a color catcher and dry in a hot dryer. I don't want any surprizes after the quilt is done.
    Mary

  3. #3
    Super Member ArtsyOne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Canadian in Minnesota
    Posts
    2,143
    I prewash my fabric using the same settings at which the quilt will be washed: warm water and dryer. If the quilt is meant to be hung on the wall, then I don't bother prewashing at all. I handle precuts the same way, but I put them into a mesh bag first.
    A fabric stash is always missing that one fabric needed to finish the quilt on which you're working.

  4. #4
    Super Member Wanabee Quiltin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    St. Louis suburbs
    Posts
    5,217
    I wash before I am going to cut it out. I have a huge stash and do not wash anything until I have picked out the fabric and am ready to cut. I have some of the best fabric possible and it has bled and bled in my kitchen sink. I even washed a quilt top I bought at a yard sale and it bled the red onto the white and I did use a color catcher in the washer with it. I use color catchers all the time but I would never make a quilt without washing the fabric first. Yellow, green, red and purple always bleed the most for me. My last quilt cost me $200 to make and I used Joann's fabric and everything I bought was on sale, still a lot of money to waste if the colors ran and ruined it.

  5. #5
    Super Member SewExtremeSeams's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    7,743
    Blog Entries
    47
    Hot water wash with color catchers followed by hot dryer when my fabric first walks in the door. It's my routine. The chemicals on the fabric really bother my fingers so I have to wash.

    From my clothing making days I used to do this routine 3x before I cut anything. However, I have come out of that stage!

    Linda

    Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, was blind, but now I see.
    [John Newton (1725-1807)]

    http://sewextremeseams.blogspot.com/

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Ontario Canada
    Posts
    460
    I Wash all my fabric before it goes in my closet then I know whatever is in there has already been washed

  7. #7
    Super Member Neesie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    5,882
    Howdy and welcome, from Texas! I wash all of my fabric, before putting it into my stash. Aside from the color bleeding issue, many fabrics are wound onto the the bolt, crooked. Yes, even LQS fabrics! Washing/drying returns the fabric to it's natural state, so there's no surprise, after it's sewn. I wash in warm water (as I would the finished item). I check the water, as it's washing; if there's any color in it, I give the fabric a second wash . . .or however many it takes, for the wash water to be clear. I have a piece of indigo denim, which kept bleeding after 14 washes (yes, I counted them)!!! I gave up, after the 14th wash and will just use it for a dog bed.
    Neesie


    By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out.
    ~Richard Dawkins

  8. #8
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Southwest Kansas
    Posts
    4,829
    Quote Originally Posted by AuntSuSuSews View Post
    Good Morning. Newbie (fairly) to quilting and I would love to hear from y'all about washing fabric before starting a quilt or not? I find it to be a pain but I'm scared of colors running after the quilt is done. I've just finished a red and white quilt and am scared that the dark red will bleed. Thought I buy a detergent specifically for cold wash. What do you do?

    I just took a class from a national quilt teacher. She doesn't wash her fabric. She showed us a batik quilt that got washed four times in a row with a color catcher.

    Bleeding fabric really isn't the problem. The fabric that picks that dye up out of the wash water is really the one that's the problem.

  9. #9
    Junior Member jj1150's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Auburn, MI
    Posts
    153
    And I must be about the ONLY one that does NOT pre-wash her fabric. I have to say, I have never done this, not even years ago, when making clothes.

    I just finished a queen rag quilt, with at least 30 different fabrics (all bright colors) and washed it with 3 color catchers and no problem at all. And the back of this quilt is an off-white Kona .... no bleeds or runs at all.

    jody

  10. #10
    Senior Member liont's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    475
    One question - why hot water? Would room temperature water - just off the tap - be good enough? (I'm not talking winter times!)

  11. #11
    Super Member mike'sgirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    starke,Florida
    Posts
    2,005
    Quote Originally Posted by jj1150 View Post
    And I must be about the ONLY one that does NOT pre-wash her fabric. I have to say, I have never done this, not even years ago, when making clothes.

    I just finished a queen rag quilt, with at least 30 different fabrics (all bright colors) and washed it with 3 color catchers and no problem at all. And the back of this quilt is an off-white Kona .... no bleeds or runs at all.

    jody
    You're not alone. I don't prewash most of the time. Only if I am using a red fabric, will I prewash. That is the only color that I have ever had a problem with.

  12. #12
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    14,851
    Quote Originally Posted by liont View Post
    One question - why hot water? Would room temperature water - just off the tap - be good enough? (I'm not talking winter times!)

    Hot water and Hot dryer encourages the shrinkage and bleeding ...........
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Sew many ideas ... just sew little time!!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  13. #13
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Wine Country-Southern California
    Posts
    1,455
    I personally only wash what I think will run. Always RED for sure, especially if I am going to pair with white. Some batiks......but as a general rule NO I do not wash......
    Regarding the quilt you just finished, do you have any of the red left over, put it in a sink with cold water and see what it is going to do.....that may take some of the surprise out of the equation.
    Yes that is a real picture of my hometown Temecula, California. We feature premiere Wineries, World Class Golf Courses, Pechanga Indian Casino and Hot Air Balloons

  14. #14
    Senior Member cmw0829's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Phoenix, AZ area
    Posts
    954
    Ah...as many answers as there are quilters.

    Everything that comes home is washed - warm water with color catcher and dried in the dryer. Then it's ironed and put on a comic board with information as to manufacturer, collection, width and yardage. The only exception to washing has been pre-cuts which I tend to avoid for just that reason.

    You'd think reds are the key bleeding colors, but I've had lots of color catchers colored from greens and purples.

  15. #15
    Super Member icon17's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Washington,State
    Posts
    1,689
    I never prewash EXCEPT for REDS! and with them I only just put a small sample about 8x8 in a hot water bath in clear jar to see if the color bleeds SO in your case I would find a Scrap of your Quilt fabric and do this test BEFORE you wash this Quilt!! And IF it makes the water turn red or pink you should try the Color catchers maybe 2 or more if your quilts big.
    May Your Life Be Full of Charity and Love.

  16. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    316
    I wash my fabric before starting a quilt. If I donít my nose and neck get itchy while sewing. I guess Iím sensitive to the dyes or protective coating on the fabric. Someone told me it may also be caused by the fumes of the pest management product used by the quilt shop. A warm gentle wash cycle takes care of it.

  17. #17
    Super Member Gramie bj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Riverside Washington
    Posts
    1,513
    I know a lot of quilters do not pre wash and have no problems. I have always pre washed for all the reasons listed above (don't ask me about the one time I got brave and didn't)! I may not be the best quilter, I may not buy the top of the line fabric brands, but I do put a lot of time, effort, and love into my quilts. and hate to see all that be ruined, so taking the extra time to wash and iron it is no problem for me.

  18. #18
    Super Member Thumbelina's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Heaven on earth/to N.E. Ohio
    Posts
    4,845
    Blog Entries
    4
    Hi and welcome from NE Ohio. No I don't generally wash my fabrics.

  19. #19
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Finger Lakes, NY
    Posts
    1,880
    You will get many different opinions about whether to prewash or not. I personally do because the manufacturing process (most fabrics are made in China or the far east) uses chemicals. Also, the fabrics are treated with pesticides so no unwanted critters are brought into the country in shipping containers. It's just a preference for me.
    I don't want to brag but I can still fit into the earrings I wore in high school.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Prettiptibbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Winchester, VA
    Posts
    400
    It all comes down to personal preference. I now wash my fabrics before I cut because of the chemical smells in them, but the main reason, is I like to see how the fabric reacts to laundering. I wash them just as I do my regular laundry, warm wash and medium dry.
    Prettip

  21. #21
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    85
    I prewash yardage, but not pre-cut bundles. So many of the pre-cut patterns use every available inch of the bundle, and if they shink when you pre-wash then the measurements are all off.

  22. #22
    Super Member
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southeast Wisconsin
    Posts
    1,067
    Quote Originally Posted by jj1150 View Post
    And I must be about the ONLY one that does NOT pre-wash her fabric. I have to say, I have never done this, not even years ago, when making clothes.

    I just finished a queen rag quilt, with at least 30 different fabrics (all bright colors) and washed it with 3 color catchers and no problem at all. And the back of this quilt is an off-white Kona .... no bleeds or runs at all.

    jody
    Me too here. No pre-wash, except for flannel.

  23. #23
    Senior Member RonieM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Stanley, NY
    Posts
    508
    I'm a washer - I wash everything before it goes into my stash. I say better safe than sorry!

  24. #24
    Super Member newbee3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Central Iowa
    Posts
    1,860
    Blog Entries
    2
    i DO NOT PRE WASH I think the fabric is better with the colors bleeding I do use color catchers when I wash the quilts.

  25. #25
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    29
    I am pretty new to making quilts, I have made 5. The 5th one I just finished, it is one that my mother and I worked on together as a gift for my grandmother for her 90th birthday this October. I have never pre-washed my material for any of the quilts and always washed them with color catchers and they have been just fine......until this last one.....washed it with 2 color catchers (it is throw size) and it has red fabric in it and some white fabric and the red bled on the white. I was devastated when I pulled it out of the washer so I frantically started searching "google" for help on what to do. We tried oxi clean on the stain and nothing happened. Then we used a solution of equal parts, ammonia, liquid dish soap and water, sprayed it on the spots and scrubbed with a toothbrush and could see that it was definitely lightening it. Let it sit with that solution for about 15 min. then washed it again using Borax and said a prayer! So happy it came out great, no more red stains!!! So very very relieved......from now on I will always pre-wash reds!!!

Page 1 of 3 1 2 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.