Tuesday, May 24, 2011

LHQ - Dryer Sheet Experiment


Yesterday Katie M. asked me if I had ever used dryer sheets instead of fusible in machine appliqué.  She was thinking of doing that and then using school glue to secure it.  She asked me to share my thoughts.

Who me?  Share my thoughts?  Why, of course!  Thanks for asking!

I replied that I had not done either – but that I thought that we should both try it and then compare notes.

So here’s my experiment – and test results –

OK – I tried it with a "heart" shape - folded some fabric in half and traced one side of one of my other "hearts".  Super simple shape - and I figured that would give me an "inside" and "outside" point to play with.

I cut a heart out of red

Backed it with a used dryer sheet

Sewed around it

Made a slit in the dryer sheet - trimmed the point - clipped the "v" - turned it inside out - carefully.  I made sure to put any "stress" on the fabric and not on the sheet.

It seemed to work OK.

Then I couldn't find ANY school glue - in my whole house!  So I didn't use any - I just held it in place and appliqued it down as is.

I used a decorative  --!--!--  stitch.

Then I rinsed/scrunched it under some cold tap water and ironed it dry.

(As a side note – I have never had any trouble with school glue washing out completely.
You just have to be prepared to wash the quilt when it’s finished – to remove the glue.)

It looked OK and feels kinda soft – but I don't know what the long term effects of leaving the dryer sheet in will be.

I think I still prefer featherweight fusible interfacing, though - because it is designed for use in cuffs and collars and such.  I think that it may hold up to wear and tear and washings better than dryer sheets - but who knows?  And fusible interfacing also eliminates the need for glue - and washing the quilt when it's finished.  Fewer steps is always good - don't you think? 

Bottom line - I would probably stick with the fusible interfacing rather than use the dryer sheets.

My personal preference – that’s all.

Talk to you later – gotta go – gotta sew


Katie M. said...

I did the same, Kitty. Used a heart shape and both a dryer sheet and the fusible interfacing. I also used a product that I use in machine embroidery - I'm a rebel so the machine embroidery people will cringe - it's soil separator found in the plumbing dept. at Home Depot -sort of like the dryer sheets. Very light weight and woven. All of them created a nice soft applique. The only trouble I had with the fusible was that it tore when I turned it right side out and I had to coax it a bit to get a nice edge. Thank goodness there are choices in this quilting business. People should try different techniques/ products and use what works best for them. This did give me an opportunity to try something new as I've never done applique using a 'backing/facing' method. So thank you!

A Left-Handed Quilter said...

Katie M. - You are most welcome!

I agree - the fusible interfacing does tend to tear - but I like the "fusible" part of the name. It makes me wonder now, though, if it will shred eventually and get "lumpy" as time goes on. I have been backing all of my "hearts" with muslin - so I don't have to worry about them. The "soil separator" stuff is an interesting choice. How creative!

Wonder which method(s) will be used a hundred years from now - and which one(s) will be the "Oh, no - what were they (we) thinking?" Personally, I'm hoping for the "Gee - how did she/he do that?" Aren't you?

Talk to you later -


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