16 May 2006

To wash or not to wash

... that is the question! The more comments I receive - thank you by the way! - the more I wonder: I always believed in pre-washing because of colour running and shrinkage. Aren't you afraid of those two ghastly quilting ghosts?

And really, the worst was untangling the squares, they ironed quickly and I'm pleased with the result. Now I need to find time to assemble!

11 comments:

tami said...

I always pre-wash. When my fabric comes home from the store it goes throught the laundry before it goes into the stash. Notice I didn't say "used" because my fabric always has to live in my stash for a while before I use it.

Shelina said...

I always prewash whole pieces of fabric - a quarter yard or more. But if I have anything precut - like a kit or a fat eighth, I prefer them to stay that size, so I do not prewash. My rule is that you either wash all of the fabric that is in your quilt, or you wash none of it. Consistency matters most.

I don't worry about shrinkage so much because it will already be quilted before I wash so hopefully it will shrink similarly or have a beautiful shrinked look to it.
I haven't done too many that I didn't prewash, but I try to make sure that I use those for wall hangings, and don't use them for big contrast quilts - no red and white quilts that are not prewashed.

computerpeach said...

I do not pre-wash. I used to. I find I like the "crinkly" quilts the best. Also - with the dye-magnet sheets, I don't fear the dyes fading or running. I also make utility quilts. I find it easier to cut/piece the fabric if it hasn't been washed prior to cutting.

Patti said...

I always wash everything. I've had too many bad experience with colors running.

If you have little pieces to wash - squares, strips, fat eights, etc. it works really well to put them in a mesh bag before you wash them. That way they don't get nearly as tangled. I use the same bags that I use when I wash my stockings.

Laurie Ann said...

Yes, everything comes out of the bag and right into the washing machine or hamper before it goes into stash. That way I know everything has been pre-washed. I am with you, I don't want to worry about running or shrinking!!

Laura said...

I always pre-wash, for no other reason then that fear that something may bleed. Easier to pre-wash then try to get the bleed out after it is quilted.

YankeeQuilter said...

The only fabrics I don't wash immediately upon coming home are my batiks. Mainly because those go into wallhangings. Just about the time I considered stopping the French Fleamarket line came out by moda...what a disaster that would have been! I hadn't seen that much shrinkage in 20 years!!

by the way, welcome back and I hope all is going well!!

Samantha said...

I'm not as much of a pre-washer, batiks excepted. Part of this is laziness- the ironing is too much for me- and part is haste- I often cannot wait to cut into a new piece of fabric. I do agree with Shelina above- wash all or nothing!

And, I do make exceptions for batiks. They tend to be more dye heavy. I know I will probably get burned one day, but so far, I have only had bleeding on one quilt, in 8 years, and it was fixable.

ForestJane said...

I'm a washer too. :)

If I plan on cutting something other than just strips with it, I'll sometimes spray the fabric with a little spray starch, just to give it back a little body.

Judy said...

I wash, but only when I begin a new quilt. I don't wash when I get home. So most of the stash is un-washed. Then befoe I start the new quilt I will stacks all the ones I plan to use and then start washing and ironing.

I will skip the washing if I know it's simply a wall hanging and will never be washed. These would be small ones.

Tonya R said...

I once washed 1" squares... never doing that again.

I do pre-wash as well, but I'm allergic to all the chemicals on fabrics. Certainly not as necessary to do it these days with dye-magnets around - they work wonders.