Thursday, September 23, 2010
The agony of grain perfection defeat
Getting this project off the ground has been a challenge. It should have been cut out and half sewn by now. Hmmm. wasn't this supposed to be my Fall coat? The sticking point has been that, try as I might, I can't align the grain of this fabric. Nothing so far has been easy. The weft fibers on this brushed twill are very fine and fragile, so I was unable to pull a thread across the width of the cloth. Instead I had to tear the fabric. But what I assumed would be a little 1/2" strip turned into a whopping triangular hunk about 8" wide. With the ends basted together a la Edna Bishop the fabric skews off on an impossible angle. Hopefully the pictures give you the idea. I immediately ran to the Pattern Review message board and received a variety of responses on how to remedy this problem. The most common suggestion was to dampen the whole mess and try to stretch / coax it back into shape. Using the London Shrink method I rewet the cloth and struggled with it for over an hour. All the pulling, smoothing and swearing was to no avail. Then I attempted to subdue the beast with the iron. I surrender! There is just no way to turn this giant twill parallelogram into a neat perfectly aligned rectangle. Sorry Edna! I've folded the cloth down the center, aligned the selvedges and will cut out the imperfect coat.