BUT -- when I opened them up and started to think about what I wanted to do with them -- I was in for a not-so-great surprise. The fold lines on about half the fat quarters had offset and had a faded look. And not just a little bit -- a whole lot. And when I say "fold lines" -- these were not at the edges where sun/light might have caused them -- they were in the bundle where the FQs had been folded and compressed against another. They actually mirrored the lines of the actual fold of the fabric. I've never seen that before and I hope never to see it again.
Here are some leftover scraps and I've put pins in the discolorations in case you have trouble seeing them. I was beyond not happy when I saw this and how many fabrics were effected. Some to the point that I couldn't cut enough strips to make a block. I know this was not the fault of the quilt shop and I believe they were not aware of the problem. They are very reputable and were always my favorite booth at the quilt show each year.
When I saw the offsetting and started researching how to handle them before I did anything else -- there wasn't much out there. There were lots of comments from other quilters who talked about bleeding and washing them with Retayne beforehand. I particularly remember one quilter saying that she was washing her red fabric when the water splashed on her white blouse and it looked like she had cut herself! Really?
I ended up washing similar colors in small loads with Retayne and color catchers and watched the rinse water. For those that had a lot of color in the final rinse, they got to go back through the same process one more time. I also checked the FQ bundle that mom22smartchix bought and hers were equally bad so it wasn't just mine. Small comfort in that.
I don't know anything about hand-dying, don't know the proper terms, don't know what may have gone wrong but I do know that this was not a good experience - nor typical of Windham Fabrics. Interestingly, if you were to buy the fabrics today, they come with a suggestion that each color should be washed separately and line dried!
Fingers crossed for the final washing now that the quilt is finished!
I hope your week has been full of good surprises. Jan