Well, I am a prewasher when it comes to making clothing, but not
usually when it comes to quilts.
And I do wash finished quilts, with a color catcher in cold water,
One thing to remember is that there is a difference between color
running and color transferring. Frequently you will get color
running or bleeding but that color may not transfer to another fabric.
Especially with today's dyes. It is like fabric that isn't
colorfast.... the color is lost, but it won't transfer, permanently to
another fabric because of at least a couple of things. In order for
dye to transfer and "dye" a different fabric the fabric must be
"prepared" to accept the dye. (Different dyes need different
preparation, and it can have a lot to do with the Ph of your water
too. ) And there must be a "mordant" to set the dye in the fabric.
Also a dye bath will only color a certain amount of fabric, and it
must be used within a certain time frame to work.
If a dye bath is "exhausted" it may still look like dye, but there
won't be any particles "loose" to adhere to the new fabric. And if it
is "old" the reaction will probably not happen.
You are much more likely to get color transfer when damp fabric is
left sitting in contact with other fabric for a period of time.
Sometimes this will come out easily, sometimes it won't. sigh.
(Of course having a QI in training have an accident on some fabrics is
a whole 'nother story. After all one of the classic mordants/
preparation mixtures involves urine. sigh. )
Yes I have had a fabric or two bleed out into neighboring fabric on a
very few occasions. But I like the look of the un-washed fabric in the
class samples and such. sigh.
Pati, in Phx
On Mar 25, 11:48=A0am, "Louise in Iowa"
> I'll be making a quilt for my niece and her husband, and it will have a v= ery
> dark brown fabric in it. I prewash, and when I prewashed this fabric, I u= sed
> synthrapol (sp?). I then ran it through another wash with a color catcher= ,
> which came out very dark brown. I did that about five more times with the
> color catcher before it quit releasing dye. If I hadn't, I'm afraid my ni= ece
> would have ended up with a quilt with brown dye in a lot of spots where i= t
> shouldn't be after the first time she washed it.
> So here's my question. If you don't prewash, what do you do to prevent
> bleeding after the quilt is finished? If I were going to keep the quilt, = I
> wouldn't worry about it too much, but if I'm going to give it away, I'd h= ate
> the thought that the recipient might wash it and end up with a bleeding
> mess. I usually provide instructions to wash the quilt in cold water and
> then tumble dry, just in case there's still some excess dye, but with som= e
> fabrics, it doesn't seem to matter if the water is hot or cold - they're
> still gonna' bleed! I'm just curious to know how you deal with it. >
> Louise in Iowa
> nieland1390@mchsi dot com