Sunday, July 25, 2010

another coat, more trim

Another few pictures of one of our coats in progress. It is actually finished, but I lost the pictures somehow. Nevermind, I'll try to get some more later this week.

This is a "nice to work with velvet"- or velveteen.
That makes me wonder if all cotton velvet is called velveteen ? I'll have to look that one up.

This is cotton with a black cut pile on a white warp and weft. It has a soft stable hand, light, but not too drapey or shifty. The pile is quite short so it doesn't move around too much when it is sewn, but it does require more careful handing than a flat woven fabric. Some people adore working with velvet or rather they fear it less than other people do. They know who they are, and I am thankful for them- it has never been a favourite of mine although I love the richness of it . I'm happy to cut it but that's where it stops with me.

Applying trim to velvet can be a tricky situation because the pile of the fabric fights you.
(Susy can testify to that- and we don't like to talk about the black silk velvet casaque with rows of thick soutache that once almost brought her to tears)

With careful hand basting first, both Susy and Silvia have been able to apply most of the trims by machine. The trim must be basted on over a ham or the tailor's egg that we use. There must be enough ease in the trim to not distort the shape of the coat when the trim is sewn on. Even the pocket flaps are prepared like this because if you didn't, the flaps would end up with the opposite curve to the body of the coat, and be sticking out and curling up around the edges.
The basting must be very secure because when you go to the machine to stitch it, you are laying it flat on the bed of the machine, and the ease you put in the trim will buckle slightly as it goes under the presser foot. In some cases it will look as though there is too much trim but don't be fooled, you will need all the ease you allowed.

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