|Ric Rac Rabbits bundle from Fabricworm|
Most of you don't prewash, so I imagine a collective "duh" may be buzzing around, but also perhaps a little "why now?" Well, regardless, I have to tell you why. Hehe. That's just how I roll!
At a recent weekend sewing retreat, I observed many talented folks sewing and pressing and working away at their lovely projects. It was a first "real life" sewing experience. As I bounced between my projects and theirs, I couldn't deny the stark difference between the smooth, flawless allure of their fabrics and my prewashed/pressed/slightly wrinkly pieces. No matter how well you press, using water, using starch, prewashed fabrics never look as nice as their original just-bought form. That's because fabric manufacturers finish the fabrics with "sizing" chemicals and other concoctions to produce such flawless sheen.
|Ric Rac Rabbits by Creative Thursday|
I knew this. In fact, that's the biggest reason that I had been prewashing - to wash away those chemicals rather than handle them, breathe them, surround myself with them (you know, when I roll in my fabric stash. What? Don't you do that?). I also prewashed to induce shrinking (so that finished items would remain the intended size) and to induce any color bleeding (better to ruin a batch of prewashing fabric than a finished quilt!).
|Hold onto your Dreams panel from Fabricworm|
Honestly, I still think these are all good reasons. It didn't bother me to take the time to wash and press them. And that's why it's pretty embarrassing to admit that the REAL reason why I'm done with prewashing is that I just want my projects to look prettier while I'm working on them. Yeah, it's just that. Shallow? Agreed. Reckless? A little bit.
Here's when I'll still prewash: making clothes (I really want them to fit), working with 100% linen in combination with quilting cottons (linen shrinks lots more), working with corduroy (I've had serious color bleeding) and working with any non-designer fabrics (it's the designer fabrics that are known to be so unlikely to bleed).
|Summerlove from Canton Village Quilt Works|
So, that means that most of my fabrics won't be prewashed any longer. I'll be on the lookout for noticing any problems as I now will be combining prewashed quilting cottons with non-prewashed quilting cottons. I've done this a lot when making do. Good Stitches quilts, since most of my circle mates don't prewash, and haven't observed any problems. I'm optimistic about the transition!
Also, no more rolling in fabric for me. Nosiree. I'm going to have to behave now.