Wednesday, February 18, 2015

WIP Wednesday: Contemporary Twist

The sub-heading for this post should read "and a lesson learned!"

Can you see why? The lower left seam  doesn't line up. It's not that I cut the dark purple too short. The fabric shrank when I pressed it using steam!

I love the colors in this fabric (American Made Brand) so much I bought a half-yard of every color in the collection (thanks, Nancy, for all that cutting!) at Ruth's Stitchery. Now, I've said many times I'm a "don't pre-wash" quilter. On the rare occasion I do pre-wash, it's because someone reported a problem with the colors running.

But I've never had a cotton fabric shrink this much! That's nearly 1/4" shrinkage on a 7 1/2" strip! I'm glad I always make a sample block before I cut the fabric for the entire quilt. I'll wash the rest of the fabric before I cut it.

BTW, the pattern is "Twist" by Beth Lohnquist at Ruth's Stitchery. It's for the "Contemporary Quilts" class.

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  1. I love the block design and your color choices! I checked Ruth's Stitchery - they don't seem to offer the pattern for sale :( I'm anxious to watch this project come together. Thanks for the info about the fabric - very good to keep in mind.

  2. I love the block and can't wait to see it all together. In the past I've also had fabrics not line up and thought it was my cutting but I think it could have been shrinkage. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Wow....that is a lot of shrinkage. I've had the shrinkage problem before with steam and tend to not use it anymore.

  4. That's a lot of shrinkage. Like you I only prewash if I am aware of colour problems. I love your colour choices.

  5. I have always assumed that any shortage has been because I've messed up the cutting, even though I'm always pretty careful. It's very frustrating. But this is the second time within two weeks I've read that steam can shrink fabric that's not been prewashed. I'm going to do some experimenting now. Thanks for the info!

  6. I usually pre-wash all the fabrics when I build it. I don't what that this happens to me, and i fthe colors are strong I put a little of salt in the water for prevent the color running.
    But I'm sure that you will use these block for other things.
    I'm glad to see this quilt, these will be spectacular.

  7. I decided to prewash when I was assembling my fabrics for the Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt last fall. So many bright colors plus black made me think about washing. I bought a pinking blade from Olfa and trimmed away a small strip on the raw edges before washing. It was a great way to cut down on all those strings you get when prewashing. Good luck! Cute block.

  8. I'm a prewasher but I love to sew with precuts and I have learned that steam is often a no-no with them too... Especially if I'm using a unwashed solid as a background. I'm thinking about getting a higher watt iron but haven't settled on one yet. Love your color palette on this block.

  9. "Always pre-wash your fabrics and make a gauge swatch with your knitting" are lessons I had to learn the hard way so I feel your pain!

  10. Oh dear! I would so like to love & use American Made solids, but I quit pre-washing when a knowledgable friend said it depreciates the (potential resale) value of fabric. What to do? I hope Beth will publish the results of her experiments!


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