Saturday, September 29, 2012

My Recipe for Pressing Solution

This stuff is great! It is cheap. It needs no refrigeration. The ingredients are easy to obtain.

To save money (to buy more fabric, of course!) I mix my own recipe and I'm very happy with it. One batch lasts me roughly one year. I mix it in a clean rinsed out gallon jug that cranberry juice came in.

I love the sensation of pressing/ironing with clouds of floral fragrance of my own choosing. The scent comes from essential oils that are sold in tiny vials in health food stores.

Some people have questioned the addition of the vodka in the mix. I believe that it acts as a natural emulsifier between the oil scent and the water-based starch. It may also be a preservative, although I've never had starch go sour or bad.

The liquid starch was purchased at my local Walmart, but some grocery stores carry it also.
I keep a second spray bottle with just plain well water which we have on tap. The plain water spray is what I use for when I am pressing/ironing fabric or blocks that will be used in one of my internet swaps. Swap rules always insist on fragrance free participation for the consideration of those poor dears who suffer from allergies. I am not afflicted so I revel in the scents. Right now I'm using attar of roses with a tiny hint of carnation.
 Due to yesterday's work helping setting up at the quilt show, I did not do any piecing. That made me sad and grouchy when I got home too tired to play. So after a good night's sleep, I ran downstairs, well, no, I hobbled gingerly downstairs, to the Quilt Cave.

I now have enough of those Civil War snowballs and nine patches to add on to make my Mr. Bojangles quilt top bigger.

I figure I need 21 blocks for a column of ten down plus eleven across. I made a couple of extra because I wasn't sure if I needed more of the snowballs or more of the 9-patches for the addition. My driveway asphalt is just a little too wet and windy from the tail end of last night's rain, so I will not likely be laying them out today.
As is my usual, I did bother to make the bonus HST's on the flippy corners that I have sewn on all these snowballs. I used some that were already pressed as leaders & enders. Hey, I got two more Ocean Waves blocks done this way! Yippee!
They sure are a finicky mess to press. I starched the everliving bejesus out of them, as my Dad would've said. Then they behave!
Before my feet and legs began to complain too much (they're such whiners!), I was able to cut the 3 1/2" blocks from their previously sewn strips.

This is for a rail fence all in greens for a community comfort quilt. Jean Vaillaincourt had the idea and she and I have been poking along on it. We have invited the guild's participation and we hope to get a good response.
Each of these little stacks are 10 or 11 blocks. The top blocks on the far right were sewn from Fat Quarters rather than Width Of Fabric yardage. I chose to sew the leftover end cuts together to squeeze yet one or two more blocks out of the FQ. It does make an internal seam in the block, but it IS a SCRAP quilt, right?


mara said...

On your first picture of Ocean wave, what fabric did you use? Do you know I really like the colors of the dots on the far upper left and the star on on the bottom right? Just wondering, looks like your getting a lot done.

FeatherDuster said...

I love that pressing liquid idea! I love using spray starch, but due to an extremely restricted budget I have had to consider it too much of a luxury for quite awhile...but I did splurge on a can of it last week. I've never even thought of using a liquid one in a spray bottle. I will check it out next time I go shopping. I have a bottle of lavender oil, and a bottle of vodka languishing in the I'm almost "there"!

cityquilter grace said...

great recipe...i would have to omit the fragrance though...and love the ocean waves! sadly, got delayed in topsfield so didn't get to your show...hope it went well!

Beth Probasco said...

I love your Ocean Wave blocks, especially the top one. Really like the colors in the top block.
Will have to try the starch recipe but without the fragrance.


this is fabulous, I love Best Press and I think this is the same and better. bought my stuff today

Kathleen Wilson said...

I was going to look for this recipe today. Thanks for posting it again. Love your ocean waves colors. One of my first quilts was a rail fence. Have a great day.

Nann said...

I get grouchy when I'm can't get to my fabric, too! I like the way that the Bojangles is shaping up.

Bud and Marsha said...

Love the Bojangles quilt top. It's going to be gorgeous!
I also love the idea of the Best Press. My place to store such a large amount. Maybe I can get a few gals in the LQS to join me and we'll share the expense and reap the reward..and none of us will have big bottles to find a place to store. Thanks for the recipe!

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