A couple of weeks ago, when the students in my beginners class were learning to calculate seam allowances and co-ordinate block components by combining their knowledge on four patches and diagonally split squares into the pattern “Underground Railroad”, I had brought my own UFO and got to work on it a little bit. Unfortunately, the very effective steam iron in the sewing room where the class takes place, caused some bleeding in a red fabric.
This is a hand-dyed fabric I had bought somewhere before I had taken up serious hand-dyeing myself. However, I had not washed it after I bought it, figuring that a hand-dyed fabric had to have been washed sufficiently... Luckily, this case of bleeding could be repaired. And I went back and checked all the other blocks I had prepared for this project, removing a few other triangles I had cut from this fabric.
A few days ago, I finally had pulled myself together and started quilting another Play of Lines which had been sitting on my table, waiting to be quilted, for several weeks.
Some difficulties with tension, getting re-acquainted with the machine and machine quilting as such, forced me to take out a few sections.
Now of course there were holes that needed to be dealt with.
So I applied “Krauseminzewasser”, which is supposed to easily close holes. It does – but, again with a red fabric I had bought somewhere and used in this quilt side by side with mine – a case of bleeding happened when ironing the piece.
This time, repair is not possible. The quilt has been quilted two-thirds, there is no possibility to take out and exchange the pieces. It is ruined, might only serve as practice material for exercises in machine quilting.
I am rather frustrated, as I had wanted to enter this quilt for Quilt Nihon. The only consolation I can find in this is the fact that my own red fabrics did not bleed. Gives me hope that my customers will be spared this kind of frustrating experience when using my hand-dyed fabrics. And I now - again! - know why I wash my fabrics so frequently. Steam ironing might already cause the damage, it does not even have to be a full-blown washing of the quilt.