I didn't post a new confession last Friday, but Patsijean added a new comment about fabric grainline, and because she described a different way to prepare your fabric, I thought I should pass it along. Instead of summarizing in my own words, I'll just cut and paste her comment:
"I do not use the torn edge method to find the grain as it is seldom accurate, and neither is the pulled thread method, except perhaps with wool. A great deal of the fabric we use is processed so many times it is permanently set off grain, to various degrees.
To make sure my fabric is on grain after washing and pressing I simply hold up the fabric with selvages together,usually in the center of the yardage, a section in each hand and spread my arms. I then adjust until the fold is hanging smoothly, and true, with no drag lines.
If necessary when working with a long piece of fabric, I will pin that section and work toward each end, doing the same thing if necessary.
The crosswise cut edges seldom if ever meet even though the fabric is on grain but the fold will be on grain.
When working with a print that may be a bit off, although I surprisingly don't have much trouble with that, I will cut single layer and fudge just a bit to make the print flow smoothly."
This method makes a lot of sense to me. It's funny, I kind of do a variation of this, although I never officially labeled it as a technique. But when I fold my fabric in half length-wise, I line up the selvedges and then work at getting the 2 layers to lie flat, without any bumps or wrinkles. I usually do these adjustments when the fabric is flat on the floor - next time I'll try Patsijean's suggestion to do it from a hanging position. :)
Does anyone have any more tips on fabric grain? I read a short article that talks about grain and draping and how we want the grainline to run perpendicular to the floor so that the garment hangs nicely on our bodies - see the link embedded in the picture for the photo credit and the article. :)