It’s brilliant, brilliant, brilliant I tell you! Genius, I say!

Ok, I’m done channeling Yzma now. But I did potentially come up with a solution for my question of what fabric to use for that black dress that I want to make that could make my life a whole lot easier. (And my wallet even happier.) It’s so simple that I can’t believe I didn’t think of it before: a silk-cotton blend. That would get me the sheen and luxury look of the silk, but with the ease of washing and wearing of the cotton. Plus since that would be a woven, it would make it a lot easier for me to muslin and play around with all of those couture techniques that I’ve been dying to try ever since I got that Claire Schaeffer book awhile back. (That, and I still can’t figure out how my chosen pattern can possibly work for both a non-stretch silk crepe and a stretchy silk jersey. Especially without those back straps stretching out of shape. And I’m a bit stumped on the idea of a fully lined knit dress…)

So now it’s just figuring out where to shop. The pattern calls for silk crepe-back satin, silk crepe, or silk jersey. I’ve found a couple of options so far.

  • has a 55% cotton/45% silk poplin, that it describes as lightweight and with a soft hand. So that might have the drape that I need to pull off that ruching. I’ll have to get a swatch to see.
  • I found a 52% silk/48% cotton satin at Thai Silks. They also have a 60% cotton/40% silk sateen. But the website doesn’t say anything about the hand or the weight, and I’m having a little trouble telling if I can buy specific swatches off of them. I’ll need to contact them and ask, I suppose
  • I tried looking at Gorgeous Fabrics, but all they had was a navy color. Which won’t really work for if I needed to wear it for a concert where everyone else is wearing black. So then I checked out Mood and found that they have a 40% cotton/60% silk voile. But according to the fabric guidebook I got back in the spring (also by Claire Schaeffer– I think I’m a fan), that’s kind of a sheerish fabric….not quite what I had in mind.

So those are my options so far. And did I mention that all of these except for the Mood voile are around half the price of the best-priced silk jersey that I’ve found by this point? Which I’m pretty sure was the $30-a-yard stuff at Mood. Wasn’t too thrilled at the idea of paying $90+ for dress materials….so if I go this route, I can afford lining!

So now I just need to muslin and figure out how much, exactly, I need. But first order of business is to get back on that jacket and see if I can figure out how the heck to make bound buttonholes…I have a strong feeling that the usual thread-stitched ones are not going to cut it on the textured embroidery. Especially considering that my buttonhole foot is kind of busted. (And then second order of business is going to be a pair of pj pants, because after this jacket, I’m going to need something quick and easy!)

2 thoughts on “It’s brilliant, brilliant, brilliant I tell you! Genius, I say!

  1. My local independent fabric store has some black organic cotton satin on order — no silk content but that's better for me. If you have interest in a swatch, let me know and I'll send you one when it comes in and I purchase my yardage. Not sure what your timeline is for your LBD?


  2. Good luck with your LBD!
    Bound buttonholes are not as horrific or as difficult as they sound, they are really no different from little miniature welt pockets…
    If you google bound buttonholes you're sure to find a tutorial somewhere.


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