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Topic: What to do with stiff silk?  (Read 1430 times)
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« on: October 30, 2010 03:18:01 PM »

I don't know what to do with some fabric that I have. It's pure silk, with slubs, and it is pretty stiff, and I think it may have been originally decorator fabric. It's a gorgeous deep red-purple, and I'd like to make something special out of it, but I don't know what styles are appropriate for the fabric. I was thinking of something along the lines of a sheath, but I would hate to cut into it and end up with something unwearable. Any advice?
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2010 06:12:23 PM »

Cut off a sample piece and machine wash it.
You might like the texture better. 
Wish I could find the link but read somewhere a sewist washed her silk at least 3 times to get the desired softness.

« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2010 10:02:54 PM »

Oooh, good idea, thanks! I also heard that some people recommended washing it, but warned that it might lose its sheen, so I was still unsure, but it's a good idea to test first (I wouldn't have thought of that actually). I really do hope it softens- it's so much like thick paper right now.  Tongue
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2010 03:07:22 PM »

I've had the color fade on some vintage silk scarves, so i'd vote for washing a sample first and see how it goes. I'd do a "muslin" or an inexpensive cotton version before you use your nice silk. A sheath sounds lovely.
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« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2010 02:44:47 AM »

If the goal is to soften the fabric, you can also soak the fabric (yup, I'd do a sample first) in salt and/or vinegar diluted in water. You can use milk, too, but that can smell bad after a while, so I haven't. For the salt and/or vinegar, I threw in about a cup of salt to about 4 liters of water with a cup or so of vinegar. Works great. Smiley

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