by Londa Rohlfing
Fiber Content and Care
1. The well-known, original Slinky knit is Acetate or Triacetate and Lycra. This blend is: · More expensive than the Polyester & Lycra · Fiber confirmed as acetate if it disintegrates in Acetone – normal, (cheap) finger polish remover. · Embosses using acrylic or rubber stamps, metal household items, etc. (see Threads #106 pg 39 · Usually not as wide as the Poly/Lycra version · Tends to stretch and grow more than the Polyester/Lycra version · Technically a rib knit – stretch it and see. · Trademarked by Horizon fabrics, but now more a generic term for this type and weight of knit fabric · Some say cooler to wear than Poly/Lycra version 2. Another blend becoming common is Polyester & Lycra.. I (Londa) like it just as much, if not more with the only exception that it doesn’t emboss. · Usually wider goods · Holds it shape better · Technically a rib knit – stretch it and see Slightly distressed, and shaded – the deeper coloring is the right side of the fabric; the ribs are more distinct on the right side too. Machine wash cool/delicate. Lay out to dry – DO NOT HANG to dry. Also – test, but I’ve bad no problem just drying in the drier on delicate. J
· Full, drapey styles are wonderful – even for the not-so-slim among us, just allow for at least 6-8” of ease beyond your body measurements. People will think you lost weight! What occurs is the vertical folds hang beautifully and camouflage the ‘you’ underneath! · The fewer the seams, the better. · Avoid zippers, buttonholes, complicated closures. · Fabric ties are too bulky – stay away from them. · Best to skip pockets – get too bulky and heavy, inside or outside · Cowl Necklines are wonderful!!!
· Use With Nap layout – all tops at the same end of fabric, and don’t let the excel hang off the cutting table; support with a chair · Weights of some type are useful – rather than pins. In a pinch, use tomato paste cans! · SHARP rotary cutter used, of course, on a mat - I like and use this mat: click
· Eliminate seams were possible: if straight grain , just place seam line on a fold! · Consider bias – going down at centers for wonderful play of light and figure flattery. · I rarely say to trim a pattern excess tissue, but on Slinky (and Polar Fleece), it is necessary –or the pattern will be shredded at the edges, due to the depth of the Slinky texture. Seaming/Construction Hints · Teeniest zig zag stitch of normal length: Stitch width .5 (that’s ½, less than 1!) Stitch length 3.0 · Top quality polyester thread – Metrosene is BEST ·
Stretch 75 Needle
to eliminate piercing fibers, and skipped stitches due to configuration of the scarf of the needle
· Serger: 4 thread safety stitch (that’s 2 needles!) with Differential Feed placed at 1.5 . No serger?? Don’t despair – Slinky is a knit and won’t ravel. · Steam lightly after stitched to embed thread into fabric fibers . · Favorite seam finish other than serger: press both seams one direction, grade seam so shorter seam closest to garment, then topstitch from right side with same tiny zigzag stitch – OR twin needle stitch with
TWIN STRETCH needles
.. · Avoid conventional facings whenever possible! – too bulky!!! · Necklines, armscyes, etc. – slightly stretch and zig zag (longer, wider zz stitch) 3/8” or 5/8”
to wrong side. Serge to finish, right side up. Turn to wrong side (securing with 505 Spray or
Steam A Seam 2 strips
, and topstitch with a
4.0/75 Twin Stretch needle
. This is my personal favorite finish. Don’t judge the results until you have steamed lightly! J · Self fabric as ‘ribbing’ fabric. Cut cross grain strip and use folded in half, wrong sides together. Round neckline: 2:3 ratio of rib to neckline. Oval neckline: 3”4 ratio of rib to opening. · Stitch
into shoulder seams – un-stretched, 1:1 to stabilize. Flip seam allowances over and topstitch to cover. · Bind Edges: 1. Stitch along neck seam line and center front line 2. Trim close to stitching. 3. Use a cross grain strip – cut 5 x wider than finished desired bound edge. 4. Stitch right side to right side of garment, the distance of finished bond edge from the cut edge. 5. Flip binding over seam allowance, around to the back and pin. 6. Stitch in ditch. 7. Trim excess very close to stitching with an Applique Scissors.. If on a front opening, hem garment before applying binding. Always stretch binding a bit around round necklines and on angled areas (V neck). Allow for extra length at lower edges. Trim to 1” or less longer than front edge. Turn up, then turn binding back and stitch in the ditch. Favorite Interfacing : SofKnit or Textured Weft Fusible Interfacing. Buttonholes : interface fabric and cord the buttonholes – consult your machine manual for how-to’s. Use double strand of your polyester fabric for ‘cording’. Hems - Must be stabilized in some way, or will wiggle and look VERY home-made!
Londa's Favorite Method:
Knit Fusible Tape serged to wrong side of hem edge, with sticky side up at serger. Press up hem. Stitch with Twin Stretch 4.0/80 needle. Strips of SofKnit interfacing can be used in the same manner . Stretch Blind Hem also works quite well – set it up so that the zig zag side stitch actually stitches OFF the fabric, and left hop of needle just barely catches the fold – which is so far to the right almost over the cut edge, that you can’t see the cut edge. Loosen upper tension a tad to put more thread in the stitch.
To Emboss Acetate Slinky
Place template face up, fabric right side down on template, mist it thoroughly with water and place Teflon Pressing Sheet on top. Press firmly and evenly (silk setting around 300 degrees, no steam) with two hands for balanced pressure. Spot check results without moving fabric..
The Following Patterns are ones Londa Suggests highly for Slinky Knit. Feel free to call or e-mail Londa to discuss your pattern choice from among the following: Sewing Workshop : WontonBlouse, 8th Avenue Skirt, Plaza Jacket, Thai Coat, TeaGarden T, Origamai Blouse, Japonesque Top, Mission Jacket & Tank, Kinenbi Top LaFred : Phoebe T, Thalia Pant Revisions : Dragonfly, Skye Lines (B), Vest Collection 101 C), Taos Skirt, Rio Jacket & Vest Design & Sew: Layers & Layers, Japonais Shirt & Vest. First Class Shirt & Pants, Paw Prints:: Tai Pei Top, Layers LJ Designs:: Wow Tunic, Asymmetrical Top, Skirt (not vest though) , Freedom Wrap, Textile Studio: Barcelona Dress, Santa Monica Tee, Skirt Wardrobe, Basic Pant, Basic Top, Provence dress, Florence Jacket , Tank Top Shell, Shawl Collar Jacket, Brussels Skirt, Basic Dress, , Monaco Shell, Loes Hinse: Swing Skirt, Venetian Vest, European Pant, Cowl Top, Portofino Dress, Kimono Jacket, New York Dress, Piazza Jacket, Bolero Jacket, Bistro Jacket, Basic Pleat Pant, Boat Net Top, Wrap Skirt, Gore Skirt, French Country dress (eliminate pocket), Cruise pant, Sweater Set, City Dress, Tunic Blouse, Wrap Skirt.
Reach me by calling 217-398-5166 (Central Standard Time) or visiting me at Londa's Sewing! 2009 Travel & Teaching Schedule: Click HERE for Londa's Travel Log of experiences including restaurant and shopping recommendations.