Should I Wash Fabric Before Sewing

Should I Wash Fabric Before Sewing


Fabric being washed

One of the common ⁣questions for both beginners and experienced sewers is whether or not to​ wash⁤ fabric before sewing.‌ The answer to this⁤ question depends on different factors and considerations.

Here are a⁣ few things to consider when deciding whether⁣ to wash fabric ‍before beginning your⁣ sewing project:


Washing fabric before sewing is important as it helps to pre-shrink the material. Most fabrics tend to shrink⁤ when ‌they are first washed, which can lead to issues⁢ with fit and proportions if ⁢the​ garment is sewn beforehand. Pre-washing fabric allows you to determine the true size ⁢of‌ the material, reducing the ‍risk of unexpected shrinkage after the project is ​completed.

Fabric Treatment:

Another important consideration is the treatment‍ of the fabric before it reaches your sewing room.‌ Fabrics are often treated⁣ with chemicals during the manufacturing ‍and shipping process, which can cause allergic reactions or skin irritations for some individuals. Washing the fabric ‌helps to remove these chemicals, making it safer to handle.

“Pre-washing​ fabric​ not only ensures accurate sizing but also⁢ improves the overall quality and comfort of your final product.” – Jane Doe

Expert‍ Seamstress


Washing the⁢ fabric before sewing also provides an opportunity to test its colorfastness. Some fabrics may bleed or fade when exposed to water, and this can ⁣ruin the final product ‌if other colors are involved. By pre-washing, you can check whether the fabric’s color remains unaffected and take any​ necessary precautions, like using⁣ color⁤ catchers or altering your construction plan.

Pattern Alterations:

If you plan to make any pattern alterations or⁢ modifications, pre-washing the fabric is highly recommended. This is because different fabrics have different ‌shrinkage rates, and washing will help to ensure the accuracy of your ‍measurements⁤ and align them with the intended design.

“Pre-washing is a crucial step in​ creating professional-looking garments. It ensures that your​ hard ‍work and creativity ⁣result in a ​long-lasting, well-fitted piece.” – ‌John Smith

Fashion Designer


While it’s generally recommended to wash‌ fabric before sewing, ⁤there ⁢are a few exceptions. ⁣Fabrics that are labeled as “dry clean only” or delicate materials like silk may require alternative methods of cleaning. In such cases, it⁣ is best to consult the fabric’s care instructions or seek⁤ advice from experts ‍to‌ ensure the longevity and quality ⁤of your project.

Ultimately, the decision to wash fabric before sewing depends on various factors such as fabric type, intended use, and‍ personal ​preferences. However, for most common ​fabrics, pre-washing generally‌ yields more accurate results⁢ and enhances the overall quality of your final creation. So, it’s‌ worth taking⁢ the ‍time to wash⁢ and prepare your fabric before starting your sewing project.

2 thoughts on “Should I Wash Fabric Before Sewing

  1. Yes. Treat the fabric as you would want it to look and act when finished.

    A great practice and a must-do! Washing fabric before you start sewing not only removes any dirt or rogue dye, it also ensures that the fabric will have the proper shape, size and texture before you start working with it. Always prewash fabrics for a more polished and professional-looking end result!

  2. Absolutely! Pre-washing fabric is key to making sure colors don’t bleed in the finished product. It’s also important that you pay attention to any washing instructions on the fabric, especially if it’s a delicate fabric like lace or knit.

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