How to Wash a Quilt
The Down and Dirty...
Modern day heirloom quilts are much easier to care for than your grandmother's quilts. That's not to say they are bulletproof though. Washing the quilt incorrectly can reduce it's lifespan. But have no fear! I'm going to give you a quick rundown on the "how" and "why" to keep it clean and soft!
It's What's Inside that Counts!
You're probably thinking that the most important part of the quilt is the pretty fabric you can see, but when it comes to quilt care, it's the batting that matters the most. Batting is the middle layer of the quilt you don’t see. It provides warmth and fluff! If not cared for properly, it can shrink, melt or become stretched out.
For ease of care and durability I use cotton or cotton/polyester blends for the batting in most quilts. Sometimes I get all fancy and use bamboo or wool batting. Luckily, you only need to remember one set of care instructions to take care of any LazyCozy Quilt, regardless of it's batting type.
Keep it Cool
Use cold water, delicate cycle
Wash your quilt like its a big bra. What?! Yes, seriously!
The "Delicate" setting of your washing machine generally defaults to cool water. Cold water helps to lock in the dyes of the fabric.
This setting also uses less ‘agitation’ during the wash cycle, compared to the “Normal” cycle. Agitation can stretch the
wet fabric/batting out of shape.
Tumble dry, no heat (air fluff)
The batting used in our quilts are made to resist shrinking, but if you apply enough heat to wet, organic material like cotton, it will shrink! (So THIS must be the reason my pants don’t fit anymore!)
Heat can also melt polyester batting. Ask me how I know. 🙄 When batting melts, the quilt might feel more crunchy than soft, and it will lose its "fluff". Check out the photo on the left (above on mobile) to see what happens heat is applied to polyester batting.
3 More Tips for Clean Quilts
Use your regular detergent, as long as it doesn’t contain bleach! I use a ‘free and clear” version of detergent that doesn’t contain any perfumes or dyes, but the choice is up to you.
When in Doubt, Lay it Out (flat)
There's absolutely nothing wrong with laying your quilt out on a flat surface to air dry. Just don't hang it over a clothesline or railing. The weight of a wet quilt will stretch it out and could cause weak spots in the batting.
If you must wash a vintage quilt, hand wash and lay it flat to dry. In terms of durability, quilt materials have come a long way since the time your Grandma sewed. That being said, older quilts are more fragile. Years of exposure to varying temperatures, humidity and light can further weaken the fibers of those delicate quilts.
Use, Wash, Repeat!
LazyCozy Quilts are made to be used daily, washed, and used some more! When washed properly, it will provide you with years (or even generations) of warmth and memories. I highly recommend having a backup quilt, so while on is in the wash, you and your family can stay cozy. You can find your backup quilt here!