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Thread: Quilt Sewing ?: How to find the selvage edge?

  1. #1
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    Quilt Sewing ?: How to find the selvage edge?

    I've got my fabric pieces all washed, pressed and ready to cut for my first quilt, but I don't know how to figure out which way the grain runs! I've read the descriptions, but I can't see it on my fabric. The problem I'm having is that both sides of each piece are cut edges, so how do I figure out which is the selvage? Is it the edge on the bottom that has the name of the print and those little color dots?

    Anyone know what I'm talking about?
    -Rebecca


    Endurance comes from exhaustion. Keep running!
    --DH, aka "Coach"

  2. #2
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    That is the selvedge edge- the uncut edge with the color registration marks and title of the pattern.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by beckms
    The problem I'm having is that both sides of each piece are cut edges,
    There should be four sides to your pieces. Two sides will be cut edges. The other two should have name of print, color dots, and they should be uncut. They may have tiny little holes where the fabric was held to the loom. These are the selvages, and they are slightly tighter than the rest of the fabric.

    _________cut____________
    S....................................S
    e....................................e
    l .....................................l
    v....................................v
    a....................................a
    g....................................g
    e....................................e
    __________cut___________
    Grab the guns. I'll make pancakes. ~Sarah Conner

  4. #4
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    One more hint -- when you cut the pieces for your quilt, it's a good idea to cut off the selvage first. Don't use it as part of your square/triangle/piece. Because it is woven a little tighter than the rest of the material, it can "warp" your piece.
    ~ ~ Leslie ~ ~

  5. #5
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    Ah! Thank you! OK, on to cutting...I'm sure I'll be back with questions!
    -Rebecca


    Endurance comes from exhaustion. Keep running!
    --DH, aka "Coach"

  6. #6
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    Another hint....I'm a "washer", too - meaning I wash my fabric first.

    These days, the dyes in fabrics are better than in the olden days and you don't HAVE to wash the fabric first. In fact, some quilting teachers recommend that you DON'T wash it because the fabric is easier to work with as you haven't washed away the sizing.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by LoriAnnD
    Another hint....I'm a "washer", too - meaning I wash my fabric first.

    These days, the dyes in fabrics are better than in the olden days and you don't HAVE to wash the fabric first. In fact, some quilting teachers recommend that you DON'T wash it because the fabric is easier to work with as you haven't washed away the sizing.
    Although I'm not a quilter I'm married to a prolific quilter (Rebecca, remember her from dinner at Figs?) and she always washes her fabric before quilting. A lot of times to both allow the fabric to shrink (if it is going to) and to make sure it won't run (some fabrics still do - and badly from the looks of the dye in our bathtub ).

    I hope your quilt comes out nicely. Which quilt are you building/sewing?

    Peace,
    Les
    Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." Deut. 31:6 (NIV)

    Reflections on life and spirituality can be found at https://revles.wordpress.com

    Visit my new ministry site: St. John's Episcopal church, Suffolk VA.

  8. #8
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    Hi Les--

    Of course I remember your charming DW! I'm quilting a baby quilt for a little cousin. Thought I'd start small. I finished cutting last night, and today I hope to start piecing together. I will definitely post pictures of my progress! In fact, maybe I'll go start a whole new thread...
    -Rebecca


    Endurance comes from exhaustion. Keep running!
    --DH, aka "Coach"

  9. #9
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    I'm not a quilter, but I am a sewer. If you ever find a piece that doesn't have the printed selvage edge, the edges you want will have threads that run down and pull out easily...(that's been my experience)

    I would also wash the fabric because even if they don't bleed, they do sometimes shrink--and you know a baby quilt will be washed a lot.
    If loving me is wrong, you don't want to be right.

    Don't touch the hair!
    JB

  10. #10
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    When sewing for clothing, I ALWAYS pre-wash - in case the fabric may shrink. And, up until this year, I always pre-washed my quilt fabric. Just passing along the information that I've received from the teachers at my quilt shop. It's really personal preference.

    If you choose to wash and press....some people "starch" (to put back in the "sizing" that washing rinses away). Just a warning that regular starch has a "sugar" in it that attracts little creatures that may eat your fabric.

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