Friday, January 31, 2014

gold scallops all around

A year ago I made a skirt from some fairly heavy weight cotton velvet. I wore it once. 

The problem was, because of the thickness, I didn't know how to go about hemming it. I didn't want a lump at the bottom.  I was able to wear it once because I just cut it and wore it that way. But the nature of velvet is that you can't iron out any wrinkles, so I knew I'd have to always wear it once and then wash it. But, it wasn't hemmed, so I couldn't wash it! A dilemma.

That thing has sat at the bottom of my hamper for a whole year. Oh, I've had all sorts of ideas for hemming it. I really wanted to attach another weighty fabric at the bottom, but didn't know what. I thought of making a quilted piece, a wide section, to be attached there. But, even though it is almost an upholstery weight it still has a nice drape - anything quilted would have spoiled it. I pondered the situation I can't tell you how many times, coming up with nothing. Until yesterday.

My sewing machine isn't fancy, but it does have two or three decorative stitches, and I decided to try one at the hem. A small scallop - I practiced first on a scrap, of course. Found a full spool of some vintage gold thread, and did it today. I know vintage thread is supposed to be weak and they say don't use it. But older thread often has a wonderful sheen and this makes a pretty, shiny scallop all around. There is no seam here which is depending on a strong thread to keep it together. 

I can wash it now, and we'll see what happens. I'll trim it near to the sewing, and hope for the best. It really is pretty, and I don't know why I didn't think of it sooner!


  1. Worth the wait Lisa. Looks great.

  2. I think that looks really nice. I like the stitch.

  3. The Dreamstress did a post on using vintage thread once that generated an interesting debate, too; I believe the conclusion was that a) it's perfectly OK to use it, b) thread that tears probably was not of good quality to begin with, c) if it got wet or moist, then sure don't use it, but otherwise OK, d) it might help to unwrap and discard the outermost layer that may have deteriorated more.

    Pretty! And a nice idea for the fabric.