Friday, June 8, 2012

To Wash or Not to Wash...That is the Question!

You thought the recall election debate in Wisconsin was fierce...just ask a room full of quilters whether or not you should pre-wash your fabric before you make something!  Whew!  Lots of definite opinions, and only their way is the correct way!  Without stepping on any red or blue toes here, I am going to declare how I stand:  do not prewash cottons for quilts, but always prewash cotton flannels for quilts and other items.  Got it?  Why?  I like washing my quilts after they have been quilted.  They shrink up a bit and get squishy and soft and a bit vintagy looking.  I don't worry about colors bleeding.  If you use warm water that helps carry any stray dye away.  Cold water will re-distribute the dye back on clothes.  That is why they tell you to wash bright colored clothes in cold water.  Truth.  I DO pre-wash flannel, though, because it shrinks a lot, and not always proportionately.   Plus, flannel that has been washed is super soft and a bit denser, thus easier to work with.  I came across this You Tube video on how to make a self-bound baby blanket.  I loved the concept, but I noticed that the flannel she was using was not pre-washed.  The new  mother that will get this blanket will not be happy once she washed it for the first time, I bet.  Anyhow, I decided to use the idea to make a burp cloth.  Very fast, turned out cute.  I will make more, using contrasting flannels.  Jerilynn


  1. It wasn't a big deal until a wedding quilt I made RAN--and I used Color Catchers (two) and warm water. Nope it wasn't the cheapo fabric, it was the expensive stuff. Sometimes, ya just can't win-son and daughter-in-law will love it anyway I'm sure.

    1. Bummer! Try Tide, if you haven't already, warm wash, warm rinse - no color catcher. Maybe it will take a couple of tries. if the rinse is cold, that might do it, too. Or not. You may just have to give the quilt to me to keep!!!! :)