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Fabric Lab: Charmeuse

Take control of this slippery fabric

Threads #205, Oct./Nov. 2019
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Charmeuse is a light- to medium-weight woven fabric with a satin weave, which yields one bright and shiny face, while the reverse is matte. Most garments fabricated in charmeuse feature the shiny side as the right side, but the matte side can also be used. This fabric is tightly woven but the satin face makes it slippery, and it can be difficult to control while sewing. Silk charmeuse, a luxurious, supple textile, is a favorite for blouses and slinky dresses. Polyester charmeuse is also available. However, it is difficult to press out puckers in polyester charmeuse seams. 

This fabric does not lend itself well to structured garments because of its soft drape. It is suitable for blouses, full pants, lingerie, and piping. It is also a popular lining fabric for jackets, coats, and bags. Silk charmeuse bias binding makes an attractive finish around the neck, sleeves, and hem edge on…

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