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Topic: Mixing fabric types in quilting  (Read 1899 times)
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crana
« on: June 02, 2004 02:41:02 AM »

Hi

I am thinking of making some kind of quilted project at some point from scrap fabrics.

does anyone know which fabrics are okay to mix together and which are not? I would like it to be washable.

E.g. can you mix 100% cotton fabrics with polycottons, and so on?

I am guessing silks and wools would not go well with cottons but apart from that I'm pretty clueless!

Thanks
Rosie
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shes crafty
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2004 06:25:59 AM »

I'm not an expert by any means, but you definately want to wash and dry your fabrics before you sew anything, maybe a couple of times.  That would probably be the biggest concern for mixing fabrics because of the shrinking.  Once that's done, as long as all the fabrics involved can be washed and dried, I don't think there would be a huge problem. 
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tamarack
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« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2004 12:45:14 PM »

I'm also no mad professional, but I think you've got more leeway than you might assume..
The last quilt I made had some applique designs in the main frame, I used 2nd hand velvet shirts and fleece and cottons, etc... It's held up pretty good.
Perhaps the main consideration is what is the life expectancy/purpose of this quilt? If it's for a baby quilt, it probably will get washed quite a bit, but only for a couple of years until the lil' un sprouts legs. If it's a wall hanging quilt, work away on any old fabrics!! If it's long-term endurance you're after, the more cotton prints, the better.
Mixing fabrics for small embellishments and non-structural pieces should be no worries...
g'luck!
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crana
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2004 06:13:09 AM »

Thanks to both you guys Smiley

Rosie
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chrissy
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2004 07:03:57 PM »

i was concidering starting a new thread about this.

but since this one is here, i'll just put my little inquiry here!

i've been planning a 'family heritage' comfort quit for my family, just to have on couch for those cold evenings. i was planning on taking squares from various old clothes (favourite shirts that no longer fit or are worn out and such as well as work clothes and formal clothes). i was planning on using a thin fleece for the backing for that extra warmth. my only question is, how adversly will the different textures and weights of the fabrics affect the overall project? is it wise to combine them?
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trufflegirl
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« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2004 07:59:57 PM »

It really depends what sort of use you expect your quilt to get. For instance, mine (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=7659.0) is a wall-hanging, not a bedspread, so it won't be washed much and the fabrics can be a mixture of different types --- but I did make sure to machine wash and dry ALL of the fabrics I was considering using, to be sure that they'd withstand at least some washing. If you're making something that's going to get heavier use, and therefore be washed more often, you're probably better to use similar fabrics, that will wear equally.

The other aspect of it is that some fabrics bend and fold better than others, so when you're piecing your quilt, you'll find that things might not lie flat as much as you'd like. Going back to my quilt, I was sewing to a fabric backing, rather than sewing one piece directly to another, which allowed me to overcome those differences in the fabric. (Instead of trying to fold thicker, heavier pieces, I'd just lay them flat and then cover the edges with other pieces that were easier to fold.)

Hope that helps --- it's hard to give more definitive answers without knowing what kind of quilt you have in mind. It might help to remember that 'in the olden days' patchwork quilts were made with scraps of all kinds of clothing --- various weights of fabric, depending on what kind of clothes they came from --- but people only had access to certain types of fabric to make their clothing out of in the first place --- natural fibers, like wool and cotton, not synthetics/blends like we have today.
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chrissy
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2004 08:10:57 PM »

very useful information, thanks.

all the clothes i'm using for this quilt are old, durable, and slightly worn. i'm just putting off jumping in and getting started. i have most of it planned out in my head of how i want it to be.. i guess i should just get going! haha.

thanks again.
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