My sewing resolution for 2014 is to broaden my horizons and try sewing with fabrics that are new to me. First up, silk-cotton blends. These fabrics have a beautiful sheen and a stiff drape, perfect if you want to make a garment that has strong, simple lines. Project Runway designers often turn to our silk-cotton and silk-wool blends to go for the win.
I chose BurdaStyle’s “Luxe Tee” top pattern as good match for my first foray into sewing with silk-cotton. It reminds me of the boxy tops I admire from Stella McCartney, plus it helped that the BurdaStyle model is wearing this top in a very similar silk fabric.
Silk-cotton is a great fabric to work with. It stays put when you’re cutting and stitching, unlike its slippery silk cousins. Presses beautifully (always use a press cloth). The only downside is that it does fray a bit, so you need to finish your seams appropriately. I had hoped to treat my seams by stitching and pinking, but it frayed too much for that so I serged them instead. The next time I sew with silk-cotton or silk-wool (similar properties to silk-cotton but tends to wrinkle a little more easily), I will probably use a Hong Kong finish on the seams.
I really, really like this top and I give full credit to the fabric! Here are some of our silk-cotton blends at MoodFabrics.com, but note that not all of them will have the exact same properties as my fabric. As always, we recommend you order a swatch first.
Sewing with alpaca is next on my list of personal fabric challenges. I’m almost done with a black alpaca zip vest—stay tuned!