Hey Everyone, If you’re living in my neck of the woods I hope you enjoyed the snow…complete with two snow days (my girls couldn’t be happier I had a chance to wash my denim swatches… and I got some surprising results.
Here’s a pic of the swatch after the first washing. Across the width of the denim it did not shrink at all. I was a little surprised at that. But what really got me jazzed was the change in the measurement lengthwise. I had carefully stitched around the edges to create a perfect 9″ square… instead of being shorter than 9″ it had actually grown 3/16″… That’s a pretty significant amount for a 9″ length. Here’s are close-up pics of how much the denim frayed after one wash and dry. The one on the left is the crosswise (weft) edge
and the one on the right is the lengthwise (warp) edge.
So, I put two more swatches in for a second washing… with some of my daughter’s dark clothes. After the wash cycle I dug around to find them so I could smooth them out and put them in the dryer. I could not find them. So I put everything into the dryer and let it fluff for a few minutes. I couldn’t wait for the cycle to finish… I fished around to see if I could find them…. Nothing! Not even some loose denim threads. After the cycle was finished, I carefully folded all of Abby’s clothes, I looked up every sleeve and pant leg… The denim swatches completely disappeared!
I’m really didn’t want to wash the same swatch over and over… because I wanted a reference for what the denim looked like after various numbers of washings… but I really don’t have a choice because I don’t want to cut my pattern pieces out until I’m sure I don’t have to enlarge them for shrinkage… Even though the swatch didn’t shrink across the width after one wash, I need to give it a few more to washings to be sure. This denim is very densely woven, so perhaps that why it may not shrink that much. I guess I’m going to throw the washed swatch back in for a second wash because I’m dying to see what happens to the length too.
I’m also considering adjustments that would need to be made to my pattern in order to take advantage of the selvage edges… Stay tuned