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Pre-washing/pre-shrinking Fabrics

LindaFaye | Posted in General Discussion on

Can anybody tell me how much extra fabric I should buy to allow for pre-washing my fabrics before cutting?




  1. solosmocker | | #1

    It would depend on the fabric. Some, like 100% cotton, can shrink a lot. I usually get an extra 1/8 for truing up the cut edge and another 1/8 to compensate for shrinking. But again, it depends on the fabric. I also tend to sew from my stash, all of which is prewashed when it comes in the door, so haven't purchased "extra" very often. I think you are safe with an extra 1/4 yard most of the time.

    1. LindaFaye | | #2

      Thank you!  When I use to sew long ago I never pre-wash because I didn't want to lose the fabric's crispness.  Now I know better so I am doing it in an effort to get a better fit, and a more professional look, cause it all adds up - I keep telling myself.

      Thanks again.

  2. Teaf5 | | #3

    Unless you're really tall, you probably don't need to buy extra for shrinkage. Most pattern layouts suggest more fabric than you need, and many pattern layouts can be tweaked to be use less fabric than called for.

    However, if it's a beautiful fabric, it never hurts to have leftovers in case you have matching issues or if you want to add some bias binding or contrast to it or another garment. I often buy an extra half yard of a great fabric so that I can use if for accessories or accents or gift items. Maybe that's why my stash keeps expanding!

    1. dionna | | #4

      I agree with you when I go to the fabric store sale the store that I go to has a big sale 4 times a year any where from 1.00 a yard and up when I go I look a the 1.00 stuff first a work my way up when I find something for 1.00 a yard the least amount of fabric I buy is 5 yards one time I only got 3 yards of this fabric and I need more of this fabric I wanted to put some on my shoes and make a small hand bag but I did not have enough fabric so now I buy extra I also buy a lot of denim when I buy denim I always buy 6 yards when I buy denim I cut inch off from salvage to salvage and I cut a small square to see how much it will shrink and how much color it will lose this helps my when I do regular laundry.

      Edited 6/8/2007 11:02 am by dionna

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