Thursday, January 29, 2009

Talk Back Thursday

Thanks so much to Claire S, Mamafitz, Alison, Meredith, Elaina, Caity, Sarah, Summerset and Donna Hodgson for "talking back" to my confession last Friday!

I confessed that I tend to apply the exact same interfacing to every fabric, rather than adjusting based on the fabric and garment...

Well, I’m feeling a bit lonely out here. Just about everyone adjusts their interfacing use to meet the requirements of the fabric and the garment – if not frequently, then at least in special cases, such as tailoring.

Several people described their guidelines, and there was a lot of overlap. Most people use a light weight fusible knit interfacing for the majority of their outfits, and specialize for collars, cuffs, jackets and other tailoring details with medium and heavy weight wovens or weft interfacings. (A weft interfacing is a knit interfacing that has threads woven through it, hopefully giving it the best of both types.)

The specific types called out most often were Featherweft, Textureweft and Armoweft (all manufactured by HTC).

More types can be found in this handy table put together by Threads magazine.

The following sources for ordering interfacing were mentioned:

Fabric Fashion Sewing
Nancy Erickson via The Fashion Sewing Group
Judy Barlup’s Unique Techniques

Related to interfacing usage, people encouraged pre-shrinking the interfacing and making test swatches to see how your fabric and interfacing work together – at least in important and uncommon situations, if not all the time! ;)

In fact, Claire pointed out that Fabric Fashion Sewing sells an interfacing sample kit. I checked it out and for about $13 you get pieces of their six most popular interfacings – the web site says that the pieces are large enough for you to make multiple test swatches to see how different fabrics work with different weights and types of interfacing.

Here are some other links I found that might be helpful:
This table published online by Threads magazine, which helps troubleshoot interfacing problems.
This brief tutorial on interfacing by Judy Barlup.

People did suggest some alternatives to interfacing. Silk organza, in particular, was called out by several people. Mamafitz sometimes uses muslin and Elaina shared a neat tip – sometimes she reinforces buttonholes with used dryer sheets!

So, it looks like this is an area where I really need to ramp up my sewing. I’m going to look into the sample set that Claire recommended.

Thanks again, everyone, for taking the time to share your knowledge and advice! :)

Photo credit: Silk and Sunbrella


AmeliaSews said...

As always, a wealth of information. Thanks so much for all of it.
I can attest for the products from Fashion Sewing Supply- they are oh, so much better than what you get at JoAnn's!
Hope your traveling will be done soon and you can find time for all of your projects!

Claire S. said...

I just checked my sample set - there are 5 pieces ranging from 9x23" to 15x30" - they really are a good size. I think it's time to test them, I've had them since last March :-(.