Showing posts from February, 2017

Up Close with Knit Fabrics, Part II

Welcome to the final (for now) edition of Up Close with Fabrics - Knits, Again.  I think this will be the last one for a while, at least until I diversify my stash a bit.  I know I haven't done any silk...but beyond that I'm a bit out of ideas.  But this will resume periodically when and if I discover some new textiles or if I get any requests.

Today I have four knits that are pretty different to the eye and hand, but turn out to be pretty similar in structure.
First up I have a light-medium weight polyester ITY jersey from Cali Fabrics:

Polyester fibers are fairly smooth, as we've seen before, compared to natural cotton or wool fibers.

Next up is a nylon lycra, a swimwear or activewear type of material also from Cali Fabrics:
It has the same general knit as the ITY, a 'braided' kind of pattern.
Moving on to a scuba knit, which Mood Fabrics calls a neoprene but isn't really.
It is a heavyweight polyester spandex, and also shows the 'braided' knit patte…

Up Close with Knit Fabrics, Part I

I'm sure most/all of you know the fundamental difference between wovens and knits, mainly that knits are made from a continuous thread - like, when you knit by hand - giving them stretch. And wovens are created with a criss-cross pattern of fibers that are woven together, so they only have mechanical stretch on the bias.  Basically are the fibers crossed (wovens) or looped (knits).  After having seen the wide variety of wovens commonly seen in garment sewing, I have a selection of knits for this week.  First off, a cotton jersey - I believe this is 100% cotton jersey (no lycra/spandex) that I bought from Mood.

This fabric has a medium amount of stretch - no spandex, so it's not super stretchy.  But you can see how the fibers are knit to allow for some stretch (compared to a cotton woven).
The irregularity of natural fibers are visible at high magnification.

Next up is a bandage knit, also from Mood:
This is a cotton-acrylic-spandex blend, with heavy stretch and recovery.
The …

Up Close with Woven Fabrics, Part III

Today is the last time we will visit with woven fabrics (for now. Because I think I've covered most everything I have in my stash, though I am open to suggestions). Today I have a few different types of wool, some pleather, and baby sequins, so sort of a random grab bag of textiles.

Let's start with pleather, because, quite frankly, it was very boring. Let's get better as we go along!

Nothing to see here folks, except for the slightly pebbled surface.  It's obviously smooth so I don't know what I was expecting, but this was kind of a let down.  I did poke some pin holes in this pleather, to show the difference between a 'hole' in a woven fabric and holes in pleather/leather/other fabrics you shouldn't pin or rip out stitches:

This has been brought to you by Wonder Clips! There's no room for making mistakes with pleather/leather.  Compared to the 'hole' made by the machine needle in a cotton muslin:

Let's move on to sequins! These are som…

Wedding dress

I've made quite a few dresses since I've restarted sewing, most of which don't get worn very often, unfortunately.  So why not my wedding dress? It won't be a traditional wedding so I don't want a traditional dress. A year or so ago I found some green sequined fabric at Gorgeous Fabrics, and I decided, I think when I get married I'll wear green sequins.
I bought 3 yards and put it in my forward to this past fall, when I realized (after having more experience working with sequins) that these dense, reversible sequins would be a challenging choice, to say the least. Some might say a poor choice.  So while at Fabric Outlet on my birthday shopping trip I found some beautiful green sequins (with bonus stretch) that I knew would be much better to work with.  I also wanted to make sure I had enough fabric - the pattern I chose, the Sew Over It Betty dress, is a fabric hog.  The pattern called for 4 yards, and I only had 3 of the other kind of se…