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Topic: Tips for sewing/cutting Silk Chiffon?  (Read 936 times)
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« on: April 15, 2005 12:26:37 AM »

I recently purchased a bunch of silk chiffon & silk georgette fabric to make clothing.  It's my first time using the stuff, and so far I've wasted half of it!!!

The stuff is so slinky and slippery it has a mind of it's own... How the heck do you sew with this stuff!??! Are there any tips anyone has?  I don't want to use anymore from fear of wasting it in my experiments!!!

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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2005 04:55:16 AM »

I had the same problem with sheer fabric, and someone on here recommended starching the fabric to make it stiff, like paper. If you do a search in this forum, I know the subject was "my sheer hell"...

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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2005 12:48:47 PM »

The best way to cut chiffon (or any slippery fabric like georgette, fine tulle etc) is this....lay out some plain paper (I would use dot & cross pattern paper, just because I usually have it to hand, but any plain paper will do). Carefully lay your fabric out & smooth it out over the paper. Place another layer of the paper on top, then pin your fabric pieces on & away you go! This is a bit of fiddling around but you won't believe how much easier the cutting will go! If you are cutting any other layers-say, the same pieces in lining or whatever-that can substitute for the top layer of paper.

To sew it-my old seamstress in the UK used to use a strip of tissue paper(acid free) which she'd lay on top of the fabric and feed it in under the sewing foot-this works, but it can be a SCREAMING NIGHTMARE removing the paper afterwards-I know, I've had to do it!!!!
Personally I'd French seam the garment as much as possible, and a really good tip is to do the first step of French seaming (so the seams are all on the outside of the garment), hang it up for 24-48 hours, then try it on again for re-fitting before you seal in the seams. because these fabrics are so sheer and drapey, they often 'drop' in bizarre places and you may find that your beautiful garment droops where you don't want it to!

I wish you luck with it, I'm always very impressed with anyone who works with these fabrics as the thought of it has me coming out in a cold sweat!
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