Friday, July 31, 2009

A scientific debate

When I first started quilting, I found a lot of people said "I never prewash my fabric because I want my quilts to have the crinkly look". I'm mentally incapable of not prewashing fabric so I was sad that my quilts wouldn't be crinkly. Imagine my surprise when I pulled my first quilt out of the dryer and found that it went from something like this:

July 2009 quilt

to something like this:

July 2009 quilt

It just makes sense...the cotton batting (which I don't prewash) and cotton thread shrink in the dryer and the top and bottom layers have nowhere to go but out.

I wonder how it would compare to a quilt made with fabric straight off the bolt. I've seen photos of other people's non-prewashed quilts and they're pretty crinkly...but are they actually crinklier? My theory is that they're not. Maybe I'll do an experiment with two mini quilts someday. You know, a scientific quilt experiment. I'll give my prediction right now: prewashed fabric quilts will be more crinkly than non-prewashed fabric quilts. Ooo...scandalous!

Do you have any thoughts on the whole "to prewash or not to prewash" debate? Which do you prefer?

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