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Thread: When do you starch?

  1. #1
    Senior Member quiltingnd's Avatar
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    When do you starch?

    When do you starch? Do you starch the fabric before you start cutting? Or do you wait until the top is completed and then starch? Do you starch the back as well?

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    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    When I'm ready to use a piece of fabric, I starch it and then iron it, before I cut it up. I use Best Press mostly. Usually when my block is finished I will starch it again. Some might think I overstarch, but it doesn't feel like it. But IMO I always starch the first time I iron a piece of fabric. It makes it keep its shape so much better than non-starching. I also extra re-starch if I'm using bias cuts, i.e. triangles...
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  3. #3
    MTS
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltingnd View Post
    When do you starch? Do you starch the fabric before you start cutting? Or do you wait until the top is completed and then starch? Do you starch the back as well?
    Yes. No to waiting; yes to starch. And yes.
    And more than a couple of times in between.

  4. #4
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I starch before I cut.. .sometimes during the sewing and assembly. I prefer to starch let it it air dry then press, then cut.

  5. #5
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Starch before cutting. Funny story, I cannot believe I did this, it was such a rookie mistake and I ought to know better.... two weeks ago, I was hired to put a hanging sleeve and binding on a quilt that had been commissioned by a fabric manufacturer. The binding went on just fine, no problems. The quilt's owner had very specific measurements for the hanging sleeve. I cut the fabric, then starched and pressed it... and it was too small. I thought I must have measured wrong, so I cut it, starched and pressed it again, and of course, it was too small AGAIN!!! Smacked myself upside the head, starched and pressed the rest of the fabric, THEN cut it to size. This time it was perfect. Thankfully there was plenty of fabric left over!!!

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    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    p.s. The trick to successful starching is to wait for the starch to soak in. The main difference between spray starch and Best Press is that Best Press has a surfactant that helps it soak into the fabric faster. It is still spray starch (albeit pretty-smelling starch, lol). Sometimes I'll use a paintbrush and "paint" the starch on the fabric to help it soak into my applique pieces faster.

  7. #7
    MTS
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peckish View Post
    Best Press has a surfactant that helps it soak into the fabric faster.

    Sometimes I'll use a paintbrush and "paint" the starch on the fabric to help it soak into my applique pieces faster.
    Never used a painbrush - I'll have to keep that in mind for smaller pieces.

    I always press first to warm the fabric up - whether it's plain fabric or an already pieced block(s).
    I spritz, wait a bit, and then press.
    Haven't had any with issues with scorching or flaking.

    And my goal for tomorrow will be to use the word "surfactant" in a sentence at least 3 times.

    --Surfactants are compounds that lower the surface tension of a liquid, the interfacial tension between two liquids, or that between a liquid and a solid.--

    Okay, maybe only once.
    ;-)

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    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I prewash, then fold and store the fabric. When I want to use a piece, I sprtiz it with water, then spray with a 50/50 mixture of liquid starch (sta flo) and water. I wait a few minutes then press, then cut.
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
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    Power Poster joyce888's Avatar
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    I starch before I cut and if I'm cutting a single layer of fabric I starch both sides of the fabric.
    Joyce

    Four things you can't recover: The stone.....after the throw. The word......after its said. The occasion.....after its missed. The time......after its gone

  10. #10
    Senior Member Toni C's Avatar
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    starch then cut. It makes the cut pieces behave and gives that crisp feeling back (I prewash everything) Starch is my BUDDY

  11. #11
    Senior Member quiltingnd's Avatar
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    Am i suppose to be washing my fabric before I use it? Even fat quarters? No one has said that to me before. Not even in quilt class.

  12. #12
    MTS
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltingnd View Post
    Am i suppose to be washing my fabric before I use it? Even fat quarters? No one has said that to me before. Not even in quilt class.
    To prewash or not to prewash?

    Let me break it down for you.

    Half of the quilters do.
    And the other half doesn't.

    And both halves are convinced of the righteousness of their positions. ;-)

    I don't pre-wash.

    I'm sure you'll hear from the other contingent in a moment...................................

  13. #13
    Super Member franc36's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcrow View Post
    When I'm ready to use a piece of fabric, I starch it and then iron it, before I cut it up. I use Best Press mostly. Usually when my block is finished I will starch it again. Some might think I overstarch, but it doesn't feel like it. But IMO I always starch the first time I iron a piece of fabric. It makes it keep its shape so much better than non-starching. I also extra re-starch if I'm using bias cuts, i.e. triangles...
    Same here. I often starch my fabrics, put them in a zip lock bag overnight, and iron them the next morning before cutting. I love working with crisp fabric. I buy Best Press by the gallon; but I sometimes use a heavy spray starch. I also starch my backing before making a quilt sandwich.

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    Senior Member Gigi07's Avatar
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    I'm with jcrow... I do the same thing

    Quote Originally Posted by jcrow View Post
    When I'm ready to use a piece of fabric, I starch it and then iron it, before I cut it up. I use Best Press mostly. Usually when my block is finished I will starch it again. Some might think I overstarch, but it doesn't feel like it. But IMO I always starch the first time I iron a piece of fabric. It makes it keep its shape so much better than non-starching. I also extra re-starch if I'm using bias cuts, i.e. triangles...
    Gigi07

    Learn from Yesterday, Live for today, Hope for tomorrow.

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    Senior Member quiltingnd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTS View Post
    To prewash or not to prewash?

    Let me break it down for you.

    Half of the quilters do.
    And the other half doesn't.

    And both halves are convinced of the righteousness of their positions. ;-)

    I don't pre-wash.

    I'm sure you'll hear from the other contingent in a moment...................................
    Roflmto! Oh ok. thanks for summing it up for me.

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    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peckish View Post
    Sometimes I'll use a paintbrush and "paint" the starch on the fabric to help it soak into my applique pieces faster.
    I use a paintbrush when making my paper pieced Dear Jane blocks... works fantastic!
    Nancy in western NY
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    Super Member pollyjvan9's Avatar
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    I starch before cutting, and sometimes during construction, or just before squaring up the blocks. Remember to PRESS not IRON.

  18. #18
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I have made 112 quilts and never starch - anything - anytime. I doubt anyone would be the wiser. Lots do.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

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    Super Member jeanharville's Avatar
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    Jingle, I'm glad you posted about not starching. I'm new to quilting and will try both ways. But I know my grandmother didn't starch and her quilts were beautiful.
    jean

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    Senior Member quiltingnd's Avatar
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    For those that starch, do you wash your quilt before giving it as a gift?

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    Super Member irishrose's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=quiltingnd;5716045]For those that starch, do you wash your quilt before giving it as a gift?[/QUOTE

    Only if it's going to a baby. The quilt is soft enough from handling and I like the smooth look for a gift. I wash baby quilts because I wouldn't want to expose the little one to dog hair, dust and whatever is in the air around here.

  22. #22
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    I starch at least 3 hours before I start working with whatever fabric I'm going to be using. I spray heavily, let it soak at least 2 hours, then I either air dry it or use the dryer, but I prefer the air dry, but sometimes it's just not doable because I simply don't have room to have fabric lying around. If you just spray and iron, you're just ironing the starch not the fabric, which is why your iron will begin to stick to the fabric and get all brown gunk on the iron, it's starch.

  23. #23
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    I always wash a gift quilt. It has starch, hand oils, lint, dog and cat fur, whatever else is in the air at my house! I want it to be fresh for the giftee and also want all the scrunchiness to show so that the poor person doesn't think they ruined it the first time they wash it.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jingle View Post
    I have made 112 quilts and never starch - anything - anytime. I doubt anyone would be the wiser. Lots do.
    I ( like you,) have made probably that many quilts and never have I put starch on any of them and my quilts seem to turn out just fine.

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