In quilting, preparing fabric for piecing is job one. Nearly every quilter has a horror story about fabric that has shrunk after piecing, resulting in horrible puckers and waves. Pre-washing to pre-shrink and remove manufacturer sizing saves a lot of heartache. So why use spray starch and sizing yourself? A consistent application can make fabrics easier to manage. It keeps pieces from slipping, makes them smooth, and keeps biases from stretching. And though spray starch can be expensive, you can make your own starch sizing for a lot less.
Things You'll Need
Mix 1/4 cup corn starch with 1/2 cup cold water. Then stir in 4 cups boiling water. Mix thoroughly, then cool. Put the solution in a plastic spray bottle.
Scrunch the fabric and place it inside a pan or bowl. Spray the fabric well, until it is soaked through but not dripping.
Place the fabric over your ironing board or hang it over a clothesline to dry. It's best to dry it flat, so it will be easier to iron. Once dry, iron the fabric smooth.
Cut your quilt pieces, and sew as you normally do, by hand or by machine. You can easily find a best quilting machine from online or local stores. Just make sure you know how to use it.
You can starch the fabric before cutting the pieces.
Use hot water to remove dried starch from the nozzle of your spray bottle.
For large pieces of fabric over one yard, the starch can be applied in the final rinse of a machine washer.
Make certain all the fabric in a given quilt has been treated with the same type and amount of sizing. Inconsistent preparation of fabrics will result in inconsistent shrinkage after assembly. That includes the backing and binding.
Label your starch bottle “Shake Before Using.”