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 Fraying Flannel

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Gimpy Cat
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PostSubject: Fraying Flannel    Mon Jul 05, 2010 6:07 pm

I was thinking about this earlier and thought I should post and ask - has anyone had problems with the seams on flannel quilts fraying? I have one quilt on my bed that has but thats only on sections where there is flannel that turned out to be cheap and crappy and the actual weave is pulling apart. I have lauras car quilt, her snowmen one to repair, has a couple of seams fraying out. Its the second one of hers to need a repair job, these quilts get washed and dried a lot but Im thinking/wondering/curious - when sewing flannel do you have your stitch length short and really close/tight or do you keep it same as for cotton. I was able to take a look at the inside of a seam on the snowman quilt and I have used the stock standard stitch length, Im thinking I should do it smaller - any thoughts scratch

I have a couple of flannel projects bundled up to make, dont want to go ahead with them and have them fray. I have a couple of other flannel quilts, one on the couch that gets sat on every day, its only tied and its about 7yrs old, constantly washed and dried, not a fray spot to be seen, I wonder if I used a smaller stitch on it at the time Undesided Seems logical seeing as flannel is so soft and can be kinda stretchy

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"My will is mine.....I shall not make it soft for you"  Aeschylus, Agamemnon
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BearFoot



Number of posts : 901
Location : Phoenix, Arizona, USA
Registration date : 2008-09-02

PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:12 pm

With flannel you need to take a bigger seam allowance to compensate for the fraying. Most of the instructions for the flannel that I have read have a 3/8 to 1/2" seam allowance.
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Gimpy Cat
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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:22 pm

On one of the quilts I had done a 1/4" seam without thinking, I usually do bigger, there can be so much shift in flannel. I still have stuff I got when I first took to quilting and didnt know any better, its thinner and not a solid warp, I will keep that for pillowcases and such, not quilts.

What do you think about making the stitch length smaller and tighter? Do you think it could work in reverse and put too much pressure on the flannel and cause it to weaken on either side?

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"My will is mine.....I shall not make it soft for you"  Aeschylus, Agamemnon
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BearFoot



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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Tue Jul 06, 2010 12:23 am

You could try setting the stitch to shorter. It should help. Some of the thinner flannel you can reinforce with a light weight iron on stabilizer without changing the character of the flannel too much. It would stop the fraying too.
As for the repairs, I would use a bit of fray check before doing the repair.
Not sure what everyone else does....
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Gimpy Cat
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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Tue Jul 06, 2010 12:43 am

oh Fray Check, I have a little bottle of that, never used it before, it was a gift, I will show my ignorance - "umm, how do you use it?" I never thought of stabaliser, good thinking! Thanks for your input, you have me thinking now

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"My will is mine.....I shall not make it soft for you"  Aeschylus, Agamemnon
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Calico_Chris



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Location : Ann Arbor, Michigan USA
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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Tue Jul 06, 2010 6:39 am

What a usefull topic to wake up to today since the plan is to start cutting some of the yards and yards of flannel I bought yesterday at Joanns Big July 4th sale....I've avoided flannel so far in my quilting journey because of the stretch factor. I will be sure to cut a bigger seam.
I'm thinking I will do a snowball baby quilt. The less seams the better i'm thinking. I'm also planning on not prewashing (which I always do) just to keep the sizing in while I'm constructing. It is all by the same manufacturer so I'm thinking I'm safe and it should evenly shrink.
I did have a thought about maybe doing a QAYG strip quilt. I'm just looking to make a quickie quilt and some swaddling blankets, burp cloths and bibs. I think I need to give this some more thought before cutting.
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Gimpy Cat
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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Tue Jul 06, 2010 3:55 pm

Chris I dont usually wash my flannel, its easier to sew with sizing in. If its a bright red or navy blue, colour Im worried about I will test a piece for dye fastness but have never had an issue to date. I have made lots of flannel quilts and all but a couple have never had a problem. THe background quilt of golos is flannel too. Have fun with your baby quilt :-)

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"My will is mine.....I shall not make it soft for you"  Aeschylus, Agamemnon
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TxMaryQuilts
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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Thu Jul 08, 2010 10:29 am

Good info. I haven't used flannel yet but will keep this in mind if I do.

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QBee - Mary Ann



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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Thu Jul 08, 2010 11:26 am

Not speaking from experience here - - I haven't used flannel since my children were babies and I crocheted edges around a piece of flannel for receiving blankets! But - I did google for tips on quilting with flannel. There's oodles of information (watch out TxM! I know how you don't like TMI!! :mockery-017: )

Everything I saw said to pre-wash your flannel in hot water and dry it in a hot dryer! Some suggested doing the pre-wash and dry at least twice. There were many comments about flannel shrinking at least twice as much as quilting cotton, and that different pieces of flannel will shrink in very different amounts.

I think this is a nice organized list of tips: http://www.reddawn.net/quilt/flannel2.htm
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Gimpy Cat
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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Thu Jul 08, 2010 4:21 pm

thanks QBee the washing thing is funny, I dont like washing my flannel, the sizing really makes a difference when sewing. To date not one of the many flannel quilts from queen to lap size has shrunk that I have made. I wonder often if the quilters flannel I use performs differently to the usual flannel used in clothing, it is a heavier weave it seems?

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"My will is mine.....I shall not make it soft for you"  Aeschylus, Agamemnon
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BearFoot



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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:38 pm

Having just used a lot of flannel for the backs of about 50 quilts for the veterans, I would suggest washing it ALL. Some of the flannel did shrink more than others. Some had the color bleed out of it. Some was quilters grade flannel and some was frome Joannes. It doesn't seem to make a difference. We didn't keep track by manufacturer though and that could be the difference, but if I were using flannel, I would wash it. And I don't usually wash my cottons.
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quiltermarynel



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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Fri Jul 09, 2010 5:52 am

I was taught to always wash flannel (hot) and use a larger seam allowance. One local expert says to use a longer stitch length to reduce the chances of shredding on the seam line. Of course, I only use fairly good flannel, which makes a big difference.
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Calico_Chris



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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:26 am

Well....I don't know what the thing about flannel is that has scared me so much, I was terrified to wash it, I did read someting that suggested washing it three times.
I didn't wash it....I cut it out and sewed all but the last two strips of the final border yesterday. I'm not thrilled with the look of the quilt, its a yellow brick road and not happy with two of the solids, they don't play nice with the prints like I had envisioned. However, I spent yesterday petting this flannel and thinking about my grandson (currently in utero), I thought of him dragging this around and loving it.
If it shrinks to high heaven and looks misshapen I don't care on this one..as long as it will keep him warm. I'm going to just do a quick close stipple on it.
Now for the next question...........to add batting and make it good for winter or just a flannel back and make it lightweight for summer?
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Anita M.



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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:36 am

I always use a normal batting.
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golo
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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Fri Jul 09, 2010 9:40 am

I love using fleece and no batting.... I never wash my flannels before sewing... DD has received all my flannel quilts and has no problems after washing them, but I did learn to take bigger seams... I have had to repair some fraying seams...

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So you see, imagination needs moodling - long, inefficient, happy idling, dawdling and puttering.
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Golo

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PostSubject: Re: Fraying Flannel    Today at 9:37 am

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