Sunday, October 20, 2013

back to being white

Willow Tree 1 on the drying table
The Willow Tree quilt is out of the wash, on the drying table, and it looks like it is back to being white. Most of the 200 years of soil washed out. Just like the other quilt I washed, it is a light cream color when wet, so I expect it to be a brighter white when fully dry.

first soak: the water turned yellow from the soil washing out of the quilt
after rinsing: the water is clear, most of the staining is gone
This quilt is the first one purchased, but the second one washed. The other quilt had no fringe and was in much better condition, which was why I was brave enough to wash it. With that experience under my belt, it was only a matter of time before I washed this quilt. Even though I was worried about the fragile fringe, there was no need to worry. It didn't get tangled, twisted, or further damaged.

Willow Tree 1 before washing: much discoloration and staining 
side-by-side: washed Willow Tree 2 (left), unwashed Willow Tree 1 (right
Willow Tree 2 before washing: stains and discoloration along folds
Willow Tree 2 after washing: back to being white
When you look at the side-by-side picture of the washed and unwashed quilt, the amount of soil and discoloration in the unwashed quilt is very pronounced. When the second washed quilt is dry, the pair of quilts will be a much closer match.


  1. What beautiful quilts. Love that old quilting style. Thanks for posting about this.

  2. Can you explain your process for washing and what you used?

    1. I can, and have. Check out some of my previous blogs on the subject of washing, and you should find the details there. :)

  3. Ewwww! That first soak water is pretty nasty. How nice that now we get to see the coverlet as the maker saw it!