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Do you need to wash linen before you dressmake with it?

(8 Posts)
Wigeon Fri 27-Jan-17 20:34:00

So I am sewing with 100% linen for the first time - should I wash it beforehand so it shrinks? How much is it likely to shrink by? (10%? 30%?!) What temperature should you wash it on?

Voices of experience welcome!

BarchesterFlowers Fri 27-Jan-17 20:47:44

I wash everything on a 30 degree wash. Unless the way it behaves in the wash would change what I did with it. For instance I had a silk suiting fabric, looked like a linen. If it had shrunk/lost colour/structure in the wash I would have had it cleaned.

In those sort of cases where I don't know if it is going to be ruined I measure a 6 or 8 inch square accurately. Zig zag or overlock it and wash it on a wool wash first, if it survives unchanged I wash it again once it is dry on a 30 degree short wash.

BarchesterFlowers Fri 27-Jan-17 21:03:25

Must add that I use 30 degrees because that is my standard wash - you need to use the temperature you will use for the garment you make. I only use 30 degree either cotton, wool or mixed fibre wash.

Wigeon Fri 27-Jan-17 22:24:23

Thank you! Giving it a go with a piece I've measured on a 40 degree wash...

languagelearner Thu 02-Feb-17 16:48:42

I was under the impression you have to wash everything first, better being safe than sorry.

BarchesterFlowers Thu 02-Feb-17 17:23:19

Only if you would only wash the garment you made.

As above I would have had the silk cleaned if it didn't wash/was ruined by the process - if I am unsure whether washing is the right thing I only wash a small piece. If something shrunk so much that the drape was altered I would have it cleaned instead.

llangennith Thu 02-Feb-17 17:30:11

It's never occurred to me confused

frenchfancy Thu 02-Feb-17 17:36:33

I wash and tumble dry all fabric before I sew. I hate it when I have clothes that fit before they are washed but not after ( the problem with most RTW is that they don't pre-treat the fabric.)

I never sew with fabric that can't be washed.

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