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Message Board > Fabrics and more... > What to do with fabric with many faded spots? ( Moderated by CynthiaSue)

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What to do with fabric with many faded spots?
ahrizel
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ahrizel
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Date: 1/14/13 5:30 PM

I just found some old chambray fabric, at least 10 years old-that wasn't stored well. It has large faded areas, especially around the folds. Not something I can cut around. It's already had a run through the washer and washed and dried with no problems. The fabric is in good condition and a burn test reassured me that it is cotton. The only thing I can think of doing with it is dying it a darker blue. But I'm open to suggestions, I probably have 5 yards of what is decent cotton and I hate to throw it out.
Mary

PattiAnnJ
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In reply to ahrizel <<


Date: 1/14/13 5:40 PM

Dying will not not eliminate the spots. Cut a section & try soaking in a bath of Oxl Clean. Try at least a twice, for several hours.

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I dont give them Hell, I just tell the truth about them and they think its Hell. Harry Truman

"Improvise, adapt and overcome." - Clint Eastwood/Heartbreak Ridge

ahrizel
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Date: 1/14/13 5:57 PM

OxyClean huh? Well, it won't do any harm. Worth a try at least.
Mary

tourist
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Date: 1/14/13 7:13 PM

I would just work with what you have and tie dye it or do some strategic bleaching. I haven't done it, but I have seen instructions for using a weakish bleach solution in a spray bottle, lay something on the fabric (they used leaves etc., but you could cut patterns out of anything bleach resistant) spray, let it bleach just enough to show the pattern, then rinse and wash.

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Date: 1/14/13 7:45 PM

Maybe you could use it next time you want to make a muslin.

tinflutterby
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Date: 1/15/13 2:40 AM

I would consider fabric painting, over dying and paint sticks. Check out Laura Murray I just went to a trunk show of hers and it is amazing what you can do with ugly fabric.
-- Edited on 1/15/13 2:41 AM --
Lets try this link againLaura Murray
-- Edited on 1/15/13 2:43 AM --

ahrizel
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Date: 1/15/13 10:24 AM

Oh those paintsticks! I've seen them at a quiltshow, and am contemplating taking a class on them at one of the sewing expos. It would be worth it I think, not just for this fabric. They look beautiful and I think you could do some gorgeous work with them. I'm going to the Lancaster quilt show and hopefully I will see them there, that way I can try playing with them. I don't know if they would work for this fabric, but they look like a great thing to use in general. I've been eying them up since the first time I saw them. As for fabric dying I've considered that for a while. That's definitely a procion dye order, if I never see rit dyes again it will be too soonBut they are some good suggestions, I'll check out Dharma and see about their kits to start trying some dying techniques.
Mary

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In reply to ahrizel <<


Date: 1/15/13 10:50 AM

Lots of great ideas here I love customizing fabric!

A regular pattern of fading is often hard to disguise no matter how much is added. If it's overdyed the light areas will probably still show as lighter areas.

I think I would start with some discharging as tourist suggests. I don't like to use liquid bleach it's too easy to overdo and burn through. I have some bleach thickener from Dharma which I haven't tried, my favorite is dishwasher gel that contains bleach. It's super easy to work with and the low bleach concentration gives wider range of working time. Just be sure to neutralize the bleach after. There are other discharging chemicals but I have the best success on cotton fabric with bleach.

Then I would overdye with procion dyes, followed by any of the other surface techniques like paints or paintstiks. Voila! totally custom fabric!

btw Craftsy has a Jane Dunnewold class on Fabric Dyeing - love her books. I've watched most of it, good techniques. She is anti-discharge, but well I just ignore that advice There are many different ways to achieve success with procion and each instructor thinks theirs is the best.

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Tess

On threadpainting flowers: "How many colors are in a flower? ... How many do you have?" - Ellen Anne Eddy

Elona
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In reply to ahrizel <<


Date: 1/15/13 3:30 PM

With 5 yards of good fabric, you should be able to make a mighty fine workshirt or even two--and then joyfully throw the faded, spotted excess out! Yay!

ahrizel
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Date: 1/15/13 3:59 PM

Right now the fabric is doing a soak in Oxy Clean, on the grounds that it will do no harm. It soaked overnight and is doing round 2 today. In the dryer tonight and we'll see what the results are. Don't know where I'm going after that, but I've had a lot of wonderul suggestions. I'm doing to the Lancaster Quilt Show in March and may pickup some of the paint sticks or other fun things while I'm there. I've been eying them up since the first time I saw them anyway. What I'm going to do with these fun goodies I'm just not sure yet. The fabric is still an idea in progress, but I'm probably going to do something with it in the decorative vein. The fabric is a decent quality so fancifying it up sounds like a good idea. I've never done some of the bleaching and dying stuff so yet another learning experience. I can see my husband now, you want to do what?!?!? Never a dull moment.
Mary

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