Feb 04 2020
What have I been sewing lately? This was a garment I cloned and originally made in a Liberty cotton print (see previous Blog post), but I also wanted to recreate it in a fabric similar to the original garment to achieve the same look
and drape. I chose a polyester satin fabric from our online shop,
it was however, much more tricky to work with. Fabrics like chiffon,
charmeuse, georgette, voile, sateen, organza and many others are
being slippery and unstable, making them difficult to sew. When
sewing with such fabrics (which includes many lining materials as well),
essential sewing tools and knowing proper techniques can transform a
difficult sewing experience into an (almost) enjoyably rewarding one.
The fabric slipped around a lot while laying up, using a piece of
corduroy, wool, velveteen or something like that to act as an underlay
that ‘grabs’ the
slippy fabric or tissue paper sandwiching the fabric can keep the
layers in place, making cutting easier. I used long sharp pins to hold
in place and serrated scissors to grip the fabric when cutting.
However, when it came to the bias binding, a rotary cutter and mat
worked much better
as it kept the fabric flat.
For sewing, I changed my needle to a thinner size 9/70, reduced the
thread tension to prevent the fabric puckering or gathering up, made
sure I wasn't
using a thick thread and attached a walking foot to help the
material glide smoothly through the machine while keeping the fabric
I starting by finishing the back neck edge with bias binding and used a lot more pins than I usually would to hold the fabric in place.
The back piece was gathered onto the back yoke, slippy fabrics are very easy to gather because the thread slides easily through the weave.
I used the coolest setting when pressing and on the wrong side of fabric where possible. I used a pressing cloth where I needed to press on the right side of the fabric. I avoided using steam as it can leave marks on the fabric, the weight of the iron, more than the heat helps achieve neatly pressed edges.
The method for attaching the frill second around time was easier (although handling the fabric was more tricky). I used a separate piece of binding for the front and back, however, next time I am going to attach it in one piece to hide the end of the shoulder seams at the inner neck edge.
The fabric managed to recreate a similar drape for the frill to the original garment.
The bodice and sleeves were made up with an elasticated finish at the
bottom hem and sleeve openings, it was easier to overlock the hems and
a single turning rather than try and press and double turning.
This is what the finished garment looked like.