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We don't prewash, do we?

We don't prewash, do we?

Old 07-30-2017, 12:05 PM
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Default We don't prewash, do we?

I'm just checking

As a garment sewist I'm used to prewashing Everything so this feels like a transgression to me LOL

However, if I understand correctly, the pucker-y textured look of washed quilts (I loooooove that!) is maximized by not prewashing. Is the shrinkage that makes the puckers, right?

Last edited by QuiltnNan; 07-30-2017 at 12:49 PM. Reason: remove shouting/all caps
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:11 PM
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Yep, that's right I generally don't pre wash because 1) I'm too lazy and impatient to use the fabric right now! And 2) I hate the unraveled edges.
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:24 PM
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I do pre-wash. There are too many potential problems if I don't. Uneven shrinkage, dyes that bleed unexpectedly, chemicals in the fabrics from manufacturing... I still get puckery quilts if the batting shrinks, and anyway having a quilt pucker is not a priority with me. You'll find that pre-washing is a hot topic of conversation, with many on both sides of the issue.
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:28 PM
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Thanks NZ!

Dunster, I had no idea-- Sorry to all the prewashers out there! And yes, I'm worried too about the finishing stuff that gets put on fabric. It does not smell good.

But the thought of having to press (not iron!) all that yardage is scary LOL. Good to know tho that I can get puckering if I do decide to wash.
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:32 PM
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You are right to a degree. You can prewash your fabric, It removes chemicals, shrinks the fabric, checks bleeding and how the material acts after washing, Does it stay soft, pill, get dull. You will still achieve a crinkle look if you use cotton batting because it will do just enough shrinking to get the desired effect.

I always wash, dry and fold fabric as soon as it comes through my door and get it into my stash. As I need fabric I cut the amount I need off the stash fabric, dip in liquid starch, damp dry and press.
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:36 PM
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I prewash almost all my quilting fabric, and almost never have to iron anything. I always dry with a clean (dry) large cotton towel. I find that is does make a difference.

Everything you see here has been prewashed - with little to no pressing before folding.

I personally can't stand the feel of unwashed fabric.

Last edited by Macybaby; 07-30-2017 at 12:40 PM.
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:40 PM
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Most fabric can be folded straight from the dryer. When using it is when I press.

The chemical thing in my house is the clencher for me. There's many polutants I can't do anything about.

Also, some fabrics are stretched so much, washing relaxes them. Often 1 1/2 - 2" is lost in straightening. I'd rather that happen before cutting.
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:47 PM
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I always wash everything washable before cutting it. Including the battings - if they are washable.

This includes trims like bias tape and rick rack. I would probably wash cotton thread if I could figure out how to do it.

My quilts still get "some" crinkle in them after they are washed.

I would no more knowingly use unwashed fabric than I would not use my seat-belt while traveling.
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:47 PM
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I shudder to think what my grade 8 home economics teacher would do if I didn't pre-wash my fabric. Although, she did teach me to sew garments, not quilts...........
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Old 07-30-2017, 12:50 PM
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yes, if the fabric has a tendency to shrink, and most cottons will, then you get more puckering by not prewashing. that is, unless it is so densely quilted that there is no room for puckers LOL
Nancy in western NY
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