Batiste de Soie

Going alphabetically, batiste de soie is the way to start with silk weaves.  The Fairchild Books Dictionary of Textiles lists Batiste de Soie as “a sheer silk fabric, plain or figured, resembling silk mull (p. 48).” Batiste is itself a weaving technique, named after the 13th century linen weaver Jean Baptiste.  Batiste pulls directly from his name, with this particular fabric translating as “batiste of silk.”  Batiste was originally a very fine, diaphanous fabric, most commonly these days woven in cotton or poly/cotton blends. But it can be found in silk!  In All About Silk, author Julie Parker says “it

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Screen 2

Screen 2

This will be a very short post, since there really isn’t much to Screen 2 on the Baby Lock Destiny 2.  There are three options, only two of which have meaning at this point, since I am nowhere near page 82 and using a dual foot controller (yes…I’m a bit intimidated by that). Really, the main take away is that you can set the start position for your needle.  Factory setting has it starting from a left alignment position.  This would be because the seam marker has the 5/8 allowance measured from the left position.  If you prefer to start

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Cleaning and Maintaining Our Silks

The Care and Feeding of Silk, Dry Clean Only

I’ve been trying to post on Tuesdays a stain removal.  Unfortunately, the stain I’m currently working on is exceptionally stubborn, so I have no video to post.  But in keeping with a cleaning theme, I decided to post what we use to clean silk, and why we use those things.  This seems like a reasonable substitute for stains.  So here is what we use for cleaning and maintaining our silks. I’m going to start with Dr. Bronner’s Baby Unscented Liquid Soap.  I use this to pre-wash my silk before cutting and after events for a light clean.  This is VERY

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What’s in a Weave?

Amethyst Glass Silk Satin

In a blog post earlier this year, I asked the question What’s that Fiber?  I provided a brief list of different fibers, then a slightly more thorough detailing of the three different weaving techniques most commonly used.  I’m going to write a (long) series of posts describing what specifically each weave is.  The three weaves are Plain, Twill, Satin.  But there is TREMENDOUS variety within those three categories.  So what’s in a weave? Just in a silk fiber, plain weaving is used to create Batiste de Soie, Broadcloth, Chiffon, China Silk, Cloque, Crepe, Crepe de Chine, Dupioni, Four Ply, Georgette,

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Screen 1

Screen 1

Learning to use the Baby Lock Destiny II is actually fairly simple.  I’m not JUST using it for the camera, and I have figured out the basics of threading, winding a bobbin, changing needles and presser foots (feet?), and embroidery functions.  The frighteningly long manual is another kettle of fish.  To quote Beetlejuice, it’s like reading stereo instructions. Continuing on with how the manual is laid out, I start of The Machine and follow the little pictures in the manual to get to machine setting Screen 1.  Then it gets a little more convoluted, as the instructions included on screen

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Frixion Pens–Not quite invisible ink

Frixion pens...They Rock!

Almost a year ago, my mom gave me a pack of Frixion pens.  And she was very excited because if you mark fabric with the Frixion pens, then iron over the mark, the mark disappears.  This is SO COOL!  No more tracing paper!  No more wheels leaving pin pricks in your fabric!  No more uneven lines from the combination of wheel and paper!  I loved my Frixion pens instantly. So I used my Frixion pens pretty heavily on all my projects.  In May I taught my Care and Feeding of Silk Class at West Kingdom’s Golden Beltane.  And one of

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The Manual

The Manual

Mother of God!  The Baby Lock Destiny II is a thing of beauty, a modern marvel that does more things than one would think, requiring an instruction manual that is 414 pages long.  FOUR HUNDRED AND FOURTEEN PAGES!  I was able to determine the basic sewing functions very quickly (like, the instructions are literally on the screen quickly).  However, I decided that to really maximize the glory that is this machine, I’d take it slow.  I would work my way through the manual one function at a time.  It was going to be one page at a time, but at 414

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Baby Lock Destiny II

Baby Lock Destiny 2

Following Costume College 2016, I took more of a hiatus than intended while I took care of some back of house stuff.  Inventory, website maintenance, storage, vending contracts… This all culminated with a birthday embroidery workshop weekend featuring the Baby Lock Valiant (I did NOT buy this machine…) The event was hosted by local Baby Lock vendor, A1 Vacuum and Sewing, which is co-owned by Peter, Patrick, and Jeanne.  Now, my mom has been raving about Peter for years.  And apparently, she is not the only one, as hoards of ladies descended upon Peter en masse when he finally made his

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Out out Damn Spot!

So this saga starts at Golden Beltane.  We were prepping our steaks for grilling when some wind kicked up and splashed some blood on my sleeve.  Because I am an idiot, I grinned.  Yay!  Blood stains!  And I didn’t have to donate them myself! If you get blood on silk, move hell and high water to soak that stain immediately!  It can be done on a set in stain, but seriously, if the stain doesn’t get the chance to set, it is ever so much easier. Here is the progression. Internet says to use salt water to break down the

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Water Marks on Silk

Water Marks on Silk…you hate them, yet they inevitably appear. While at costume college, I led a Q&A session on The Care and Feeding of Silk.  And it was awesome!  So much enthusiasm, the energy in the room was high, everyone was sharing tips and tricks.  I loved it.  But in the course of the class, I dropped (deliberately) a spot of water on a previously starched piece of Habotai.  I wanted to demonstrate exactly what water marking was and why it was no big deal. And as the silk scrap made it’s way around the room, it dried, and

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