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3 Hour Scarf – July 2005 issue, No. 119

Bunny01 | Posted in General Sewing Info on

Hi all,

My name is Bunny and I’m a re-educated sewing enthusiast.  I say re-ed because I haven’t done any sewing in 30 years–too busy working.  Anyway now that I’m retired I’m trying to get back to it.  I want to make the 3 hour scarf shown in the July 2005 issue, No. 119.  Unfortunately, I’ve never made anything slippery except for skirt linings.  If I use organza, what size needle do I use, what length stitch, and how much yardage should I purchase for 3 colors.  If you have any tips on sewing with organza I certainly could use them.


  1. Beth | | #1

    I've never sewn on organza, but in this situation, I would use Sandra Betzina's book "Fabric Saavy". It lists needles, thread and other information in a format that is divided by fabric. I borrowed a copy from the library and it was so useful, I bought my own.

    Some people prefer a book by Claire Schaefer (sp?) which has this type information also. Her book explains more of the why and elaborates on situations in which the guidelines change.


    1. Bunny01 | | #4

      Thank you for the information, Beth.  As soon as the library opens on Monday, I'm going to check out the book you recommended.  I'm sure after I read that I'll be ready to go.

      Thanks again.


  2. mimi | | #2

    Bunny 01,

    To sew silk organza you will need a 60/8 or 65/9 needle in your machine.  Make sure it is sharp and does not have any burrs, as this will cause snags in the fabric.  It might be best to start out with a new needle!

    As for the stitch length, 2.0 mm is recommended.  I have sewn silk chiffon, also very slippery, and have found that the key is to use silk pins and not stretch the fabric as you sew.

    I can't help you with the amount of yardage, but I do remember the article.  After looking at it again, especially the cover scarf, I would guess that a quarter yard of each color would be enough, but again I am guessing?  Why not post a question to Carol Fresia on here?


    Edited 11/12/2005 5:49 pm ET by mimi

    1. ShariLynn | | #3

      I believe there was a previous discussion on this scarf and THREADS answered the questions about the yardage.  Do a search through the archives.  I know I read it somewhere.

    2. Bunny01 | | #5

      Thank you, Mimi, for the information you forwarded.  I tried to send one thank you to you, Beth, and ShariLynn, but the system told me there were no members with your names.  I guess I did something incorrectly.

      Anyway, thank you.

      1. mimi | | #6

        Bunny, I think you can only send to one recipient at a time.  If you want to reach multiple members use "All".  Let me know how your scarf turns out!


  3. mjorymer | | #7

    The scarf takes 2 3/4 yards of 45" fabric---that produces a parallelogram that is about 64" long. 

    A three color scarf --- 4 3" wide strips of each color requires 1 3/4 of each, a total of 5 1/4 yards!  The reason: when you fold up one side of the fabric and cut it at the true bias, you lose 45" across the length of fabric and you need 12" of length to get 4 3" pieces---so you need a total of 57"  ( i.e. 45 + 12)  or 1.6 yards. 

    That's why, in the original article, the writers dyed the organza strips rather than using almost twice as much yardage.

    If you can find 55 inch fabric, you can make a scarf/shawl that is 78" long--you will need about 3 yards. If you used 3 colors, you would need 1.85 yards of each color.

    Marijo Rymer, VP Public Relations, Professional Association of Custom Clothiers

    1. Bunny01 | | #8

      Thank you so much.  I was getting nervous about purchasing material on a guesstimate.  I really appreciate your information.


      1. carolfresia | | #9

        Marijo did the math for me, how nice is that?! And she's right--we did end up dyeing the fabric so that we could have lots of different colors without purchasing many yards. For the cover scarf, I dyed each strip separately, so they're actually all slightly different colors.

        As for working with organza, it's not difficult at all. I wouldn't even classify it as a "slippery" fabric. It's got lots of body, so it slides through the serger easily. If you're using a serged rolled hem, as was used for the cover scarf, select a pretty small stitch length. I don't remember exactly what length I used, but I fiddled around till I was getting almost a corded edge. If you're sewing on a regular machine, a shorter-than-normal stitch is a good idea, but it doesn't have to be tiny.


        1. Bunny01 | | #10

          Thank you, Carol.  I went and bought the material today and am now trying to work up my nerve to get started.  I can't wait to see it completed.  If this turns out well, I'm going to make one for myself.

          Thanks again.


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