I recall hearing about Elmer’s washable school glue some time back, so when I was in an art supply store in Texas earlier this year, I picked some up (forgetting what it was useful for, but knowing that it’s not easy to find in Australia).
Then last week I came across this forum article about using Elmer’s washable school glue on quilts: http://www.quiltingboard.com/tutorials-f10/how-use-elmers-washable-school-glue-because-yall-asked-t217470.html There were lots of hints and tips in it, and quilters seemed to be using it for all sorts of things, including basting full quilts!
When I was quilting one of my community quilts on the weekend, I noticed that the edges were starting to pull apart, as shown in the first two photos below:
I thought about trying to stitch them down with stay stitching, but then I thought of Elmer’s glue! Why not give it a try?
I tried various ways to use Elmer’s glue to fix the edges together — straight from the bottle was a bit blobby and way too much glue, but when diluted with water (about 1:3) it was too liquid and just disappeared into the fabric and wouldn’t hold when ironed. After a bit of trial and error, I just squirted a bit of the glue into a paint tray (any plastic lid etc. would do), wet an artists’ paintbrush a tad, then dipped it into the glue and painted it onto the seams I wanted to join. I found I was able to get the right consistency and had a lot more control over the paintbrush than I had over the squirt mechanism on the glue bottle.
After doing about 10 of these seams, I ironed them down with a hot, dry iron. This sets and dries the glue for stitching, though it will eventually wash out (you’re using WASHABLE glue),
It worked a treat and none of that stitching came apart while I finished quilting this quilt. It’s a keeper!