Thursday, November 5, 2009

To Wash or Not to Wash that is the Question :)


I had a question about the quilt blocks... Yes I have pre=washed my fabrics so the Reds and Greens don't run ;) I hope this has helped all of you with trying to figure out what to do ;) Plus it stops on the puckering of the block when it is washed after construction. Please ladies Correct me if I am wrong on this point ;)

11 comments:

NadineC said...

I wash my fabric as it comes through the front door. The only exceptions are charm squares, layer cakes, and jelly rolls/honey buns because I lose too much - I did try washing a layer cake in a lingerie bag once but it was pretty much a disaster when it came out. Even though it was Moda fabric, some squares came out smaller than others. I have been able to wash Moda selvedge strips in a lingerie bag and they came out just fine, but that may be because they aren't all the same size so it doesn't matter if some shrink a bit more than others. I worry less about colors running than I do about puckering when washing after they've been fashioned into something. So I do wash everything from fat quarters on up, right away, so they are ready to use when I'm ready to sew :-) I suppose you could hand wash and dry flat, but not sure what that would really accomplish unless you planned on washing the finished product the same way?

Haha - my word verification for this Comment is "unsoled" - do you suppose I'm going to lose my shoes today? Hehe...

Cathy said...

Glad to see this post! I just washed some red Christmas fabric for another project and wow! did it "bleed".
I ALWAYS prewash fabric! Not only will it set the color, but you wash away the additives out of the fabric (some people like me, tend to get allergic reactions to some of those nasty additives),also dry the fabric after washing in a hot dryer to pre-shrink, then iron. Now you are ready to start cutting your project :)
I'm with Nadine ~ I set my new fabric on the washer right away when I bring it home, so I will remember to "prep" it before it goes to my sewing table.
Another question ~ are we sure everyone is this swap understands the basics of quilting, as in the 1/4" seam, so when you cut your 4-1/2" squares and sew them into the 9-patch block, you will get a 12-1/2" unfinished block?

Turtles In North Dakota said...

Boy am I the rebel. I am a die hard no prewasher. In 16 years of quilting I have only had one fabric bleed. That was one of my own hand dyed.

I love the pucker after its all washed together for the first time. I do on occasion throw a color catcher in with a new quilt.It hasnt ever been a problem though.

Jane's Fabrics and Quilts said...

I agree with Turtle, I NEVER pe-wash. I like the additive, I have been quiking for 30 years and never had a quilt bleed. I like the finish because the fabric does not stretch, and then when it comes out of the dryer, it is soft and has that old fashion look. If I was using red, I also might throw in a color catcher. but i always was in cold.

Jennifer said...

I did pre-wash the fabric for the swap because I wanted all our squares to be consistent. BTW, it did bleed pretty bad in the washer. I opened it once and it looked like a Christmas nightmare. =) Anyway, I'm making a throw for my MIL for Christmas and I didn't wash her fabric. I want to allow it to do all the fun puckering after it is quilted.
My thoughts for Cathy are, even thought I do a 1/4" seam it still doesn't come out perfect. My plan is to cut my blocks a little bit bigger, maybe by 1/8" to make up for my seams not being perfect. I will then trim the bigger block to the required size.
~Jennifer

Rebecca P said...

I never pre-wash except when the block is for a swap. I'm like Jane, I love the antique look that happens when you don't pre-wash. Plus & always use a color catcher, those are the greatest.

Janet said...

I always prewash- unless I am planning on doing a stack and whack. I worked in Manhattan- nothing like seeing a rat pee on a bolt in a fabric warehouse- and the roaches! Sorry ladies, but I've even had name brand fabrics bleed. I've moved several times- different water, different detergents. I only add a small amount of detergent to the wash water, use a color catcher, tumble dry, and use a spray sizing or starch with a hot iron before cutting. Warm and White batting still shrinks a bit, giving a nice rumpled look when the quilt is washed.

Aunt Pitty Pat's Fun said...

Yes its best if you wash first. Nothing will run like red!!! And if you put all the work into a quilt, you sure don't want to have it ruined the first time you wash it. You can use dye catchers in the first wash, but you aren't guaranteed that will pick up all the colors. And no offense to anyone, but if you don't use quilt store fabric, it may not be the highest standards and will probably run!
Posted to APP from:
Maria B.

soggibottom said...

Nope......I always wash material before I work on it...... Except mohair...

JKW said...

I almost always wash, by almost, if I am making something that will not be washed after completion b/c of the sizing issue - bows need to be stiff. However, removing the sizing is easier to paint on so doll material is washed. The fabric shrinks up pretty badly. The other thing to keep in mind is if you wash the fabric and use 100 percent cotton thread, you could pucker that way too. Just a thought. Blessings, Janet

tooznie said...

I think I have prewashed once, and while I do have some red that requires prewashing - darned stuff, I tend to like the pucker effect that you get after a quilts first wash when fabrics aren't prewashed, gives it a more worn look, I find.