It is National Sewing Month!! What are you sewing?? I am currently working on a T-Shirt quilt and if our cooler mornings are any indication, we will need some warm quilts pretty soon. I think prep work may be one of the things that keeps people from sewing. By the time you get to the sewing stage, you might lose your creative steam.
This is my pile of T-shirts waiting to be disassembled and interfaced. Quite a pile of them as I will be making a king size quilt. If the thought of using an iron on all of this intimidates you, think about using your heat press instead.
The interfacing I am using for this quilt is Pellon 906F. It is a sheer weight and I like the hand of the knit fabric after it has been applied. Some of these shirts have very dense screen print logos on them. So I don't want to add more weight or stiffness. The instructions should always be followed per the manufacturer and I do that with a couple of minor changes.
A wool heat setting is recommended. That is around 300 degrees F. I set my press to 280 degrees. The time to press on the instructions is between 10 and 12 seconds with lifting and overlapping your iron . I set my heat press timer to 8 second increments. This will allow for moving or repositioning in case any spots are missed. Modifying the time and temperature slightly should keep the t-shirts from overheating and melting the screen print logos. You are pressing from the back but it would be so sad to discover an applied logo couldn't stand any heat. You don't know what kind of materials were used when the shirts were made so caution needs to be observed.. The pressure is set to a medium on the heat press.
A damp press cloth is supposed to be used on top of the interfacing. I use a piece of 100 percent cotton fabric and a spray bottle filled with clean water. The water can be misted on the press cloth and it will create a steam press environment.
So you can go from this pile of messy shirts to a stack of flat t shirt logos ready to insert into your quilt.
I really do think the heat press allows for an assembly line workflow. I was able to knock out 30 t-shirts in a few hours.
The Pelon instructions do state that a final steam press can be done from the front. I don't press from the front. Instead, I will press the interfacing from the back and take it back to my cutting station. There I trim away any excess fabric and square the block up. Then I take it back to the heat press to make sure I haven't missed any edges. This is done from the back again just like the initial pressing.
If there are any small logos on the pockets or sleeve of the shirts that look interesting, I will interface them and sew with a zig zag stitch to the t shirt block. Usually on the edge so they don't obscure the logo.
Now I just need to decide where all of these different blocks will be placed in my quilt and sew everything together. There is a quick video tutorial you can watch below to see my heat press in action. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
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Lagniappe Peddler believes that the process of working with our hands can be one of the best forms of healing the hurts in our lives and welcomes all who visit this safe little corner of the world.
What is a Lagniappe Peddler?
ˌlanˈyap,ˈlanˌyap - something given as a bonus or extra gift
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