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Right / Wrong side

Stitchwitch | Posted in General Discussion on

I’m working with fabric which looks the same to me on both sides. When it is rolled up on the bold, folded in half, is the proper right side facing me or facing the inside? I would think the right side faces me. Is this correct?



  1. fabricholic | | #1

    Usually the fabric on the bolts are folded where the wrong side is showing on the outside.

  2. jjgg | | #2

    It could be either way. You bought both sides of the fabric, so you get to decide which side you want face out, and since both sides are so similar, make sure you mark the wrong side of each piece when cut out so you don't get it confused. there may be very subtle differences that will show up under different lighting conditions.

  3. Teaf5 | | #3

    The "right" side is the one that you like the best; I've often used an obviously reverse side because the pattern is more subtle, or the weave looks nicer. I always take the fabric outside to see the different effects in sunlight and check both sides indoors under different types of lighting before making my decision.   

    I agree that you should chalk or tape mark your defined "wrong" side, not only on the cut-out pattern pieces, but also on the large scraps in case you want to change or re-cut a piece or add a pocket or embellishment later.

  4. zuwena | | #4

    If it's really important to know, rather than following the advice given so far, the two "rules" I've heard from the distant past are:
    1) Woolens and related items are usually bolted with the "wrong" side out and the "right" side in. Probably has to do with preserving the nap and reducing the friction to the right side. Cottons just the opposite.
    2) Check the selvage edge for where it was attached to the weaving machine. You will definitely see a difference in the selvage from one side to the other.

    1. rodezzy | | #5

      Great advice zuwena, also I would add to that:  at the store while being cut to your yardage needs, make sure you watch for how it is folded from the cut and if you can get a sticky note from the sales people to stick on the right side or whichever you prefer.  I keep small sticky notes in my purse for a variety of reasons, and especially when I go fabric shopping.

      When I get home with a fabric like that, I mark it according to what works best for the fabric as soon as I take it out of the bag. 

      Edited 9/21/2007 1:33 pm ET by rodezzy

      1. Jannet | | #6

        Re: the salvage edge.  If you look carefully when the thread goes around for the next line of weaving that thread will be looser than the others, that's the top. 

  5. krichmond | | #7

    If you check the selvage edge. you may see pinholes running along it.  They will have been created during the manufacturing process and will go from the right side to the wrong (i.e. on the wrong side, the pinholes will seem a little 'bumpier').


    1. Cherrypops | | #8

      I am glad you wrote "may see pinholes". A lot of fabrics I have received from friends to make garments from do not have these pinholes. This is when looking at the weave helps, and the feel...rough is wrong, smooth is right side.

    2. Teaf5 | | #9

      On prints, though, the pinholes go from wrong to right...

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