Two Tip Tuesday – To wash or not to wash?

Today’s title has been debated over and over again. My opinion is based on the fabric you are working with. Typically, I don’t pre-wash most printed fabric (unless they are DARK).  There are certain fabrics I usually always pre-wash…Batiks!! Especially if they are highly saturated in color. Take the fabric below, this actually photo-ed a bit lighter…

Purple Batik

I pre-washed and so glad I did! Many batiks are hand dyed and need have the excess color/dye in them. I used “Shout Color Catchers” by SC Johnson.  I put two Color Catchers in the first washing with a little laundry detergent and warm water.  See how they came out below.  I repeated with a second wash, the second sheets in the photo.

Color Catchers
1st wash + 2nd wash








The results show just why it is a good idea to pre-wash!  I stopped with two washings, but be aware some fabrics might need more.  There are several products on the market for treating dyed fabrics.  “Retayne” and “Synthrapol” are two I have used.  another way to test is put the fabric in a sink with water.  Lift out of the water and see if there is dye in the water.  If there is…pre-wash!!

#1- Test fabric for color fastness!

#2- “Color Catcher” sheets is one way to “catch” the dye from the wash water.

in quilting,


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