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How to wash this fabric-cotton/silk?
ahrizel
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ahrizel
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Date: 6/1/12 11:25 AM

A stop at the FabricMart store resulted in some beautiful navy blue silk/cotton that destined to be made into a costume skirt. Only I'm not sure how to wash it. And it will need to be washed, I sweat too much to not wash it. I did some searching online and got mixed results. Any suggestions?
Thanks,Mary

Debbie Lancaster
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Debbie Lancaster  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/1/12 12:04 PM

I suggest you take a swatch (about 6 x 6) and machine wash cold and gentle and dry on delicate to test. It also may bleed. The other thing this accomplishes is to tell you whether it will shrink. After it comes out of the dryer, press it flat and measure it to see.

On the other hand, if it was me, I would just throw it in the washer on warm and regular, then into a regular dryer cycle. TO me, if it doesn't stand up to the testing, it's not worth sewing up. I keep repeating to myself: "It's just fabric. There will always be more."

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Debbie

beauturbo
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In reply to ahrizel <<
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Date: 6/1/12 12:29 PM

I probably would toss it in the sink, in luke warm water, with a bit of nice human hair shampoo, swish it around, and then rinse well a few times. Then wring most of the water out by hand, then roll it up in a towel to get the rest of it out, then just hang dry and iron while slightly still damp. And see what happens then maybe? No promises though on what might happen.

I am willing to do that, and go to that much trouble and work for silk often, and not only just toss it in the clothes washer and dryer often. That is how I wash most of my nicer all silk blouses that are ready to wear, and say dry clean only on them. But, that might work better for light colored ones than Navy Blue. If darker colors they might crock off and loose some dye when wet, or color fade out more if washed than dry cleaned. I just don't like dry cleaning all that much, so I try to avoid it.

LauraTS
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Date: 6/1/12 1:56 PM

I've washed silk-cotton blend fabric in the washer. It did change the hand a little, but I would have wanted to wash the finished product so that was fine with me. I just washed in cool and dried as usual, iirc.

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rfsews
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In reply to ahrizel <<


Date: 6/1/12 1:58 PM

I was wondering about how to pretreat silk/cotton fabrics a few weeks ago since I have a few pieces.

Dharma Trading suggested to wash silk/cotton with any temperature water (Linky). Granted, Dharma is only dealing with undyed fabric, but I figure that guideline would be true for the actual material…I just need to worry about the dye/print bleeding. I knew that I’m too lazy to do handwashing – I will just never wear it. So I serged the edges and machine washed it with cold water and delicate cycle. It turned out fine!

Btw, all my silk/cottons are voile – really thin and some are see-through.

princesspower
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Date: 6/1/12 5:24 PM

I just recently prewashed some gorgeous slk/cotton in a deep copper color and i laundered exactly as beauturbo previously posted and it came out great.

stirwatersblue
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In reply to princesspower <<


Date: 6/1/12 6:14 PM

Quote: princesspower
I just recently prewashed some gorgeous slk/cotton in a deep copper color and i laundered exactly as beauturbo previously posted and it came out great.

That sounds glorious!! Any chance you bought it online somewhere and that there might be any more left?!

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~Gem in the prairie

Sewliz
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In reply to ahrizel <<


Date: 6/1/12 6:32 PM

I washed this silk cotton on a regular warm wash and delicate machine dry. It came out exactly as it went in, soft and smooth and practically wrinkle free.

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Liz

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jenleeC
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In reply to Debbie Lancaster <<


Date: 6/1/12 8:51 PM

Debbie's suggestion to cut a swatch and do a test wash (or several under different washing conditions) is good advice for any fabric you are unsure of and want to take that extra bit of care with.

I would recommend drawing a 4x4 square with permanent ink on your 6x6 swatch and then you can assess any shrinkage as well as colour loss or change of hand. It is difficult to measure shrinkage without a test square as your basic swatch will lose some size with fraying and it is becomes hard to tell how much is shrinkage and how much is from fraying.

Because of the silk content you should use a gentle detergent without alkalis as these damage silk. A wool wash or PH neutral shampoo is a good option. And don't use too much as the silk won't like to be left with detergent residue in it.

Beuturbo's hand-wash method would be good, particularly her advice to rinse a couple of times. I find line drying over a towel works well for silk garments so it should be good for your silk/cotton. You should be able to machine wash on a gentle/delicates cycle and I would use a laundry bag for extra protection. Personally, I would not put a silk/cotton mix in the dryer as silk does not like heat and the cotton content is prone to shrinkage. HTH


-- Edited on 6/1/12 9:06 PM --

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Jenny, Perth, WA

mastdenman
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Date: 6/1/12 9:24 PM

I have a piece of silk/cotton that I prewashed. I used a regular detergent, regular warm water and warm dryer. There was no problem with it. It came out beautifully, but you should prewash a test square first.

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Marilyn

January 2009 to January 2010 81 yards out and 71yards in January 2010 to the present 106.7 yards out and 146.5 yards in. January 2011 to the present: 47 yards out and 69 yards in.

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