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Singe-ing Sheer Fabrics

Gloriasews | Posted in General Discussion on

There doesn’t seem to be a thread going on singeing.  A relative is considering singeing sheer tablecloths (about 20 of them) to lay over regular white cloths, to save time.  I would hem them for a neater effect (they are square) & they could even have a decorative stitch.  I would think that singeing them would make it difficult to have an even hem &, if they turned brown at the edge, would look terrible.  Has anyone tried this?  I know that some people singe with a woodburning tool.  Comments, please!


  1. Char9 | | #1

    Hi Gloria! Quilting Arts Magazine did a feature article on singed art quilts.  It was so fascinating I read it twice.  I would love to play around with that technique some day.  From what I got of the article the man-made fibers such as polyester and acrilic are plastics.  With the right temperature they will melt and retain their colors rather than burn.  Try searching Quilting Arts Magazine and see if you can find the article.  Fascinating!


    1. Gloriasews | | #3

      Quilting Arts - I KNEW I read an article recently about singeing! Thanks so much - will look at my magazines!  You're right, too, that in the article, the fabric wasn't burnt, only melted.  Thanks again!

      1. Char9 | | #5

        You're welcome!

        1. Gloriasews | | #6

          I think the article you are referring to was a longer article.  Couldn't find it, but did find (Quilting Arts, Winter 2006) instructions in 2 different articles for melting edges & burning edges, as well as burning 2 sheers together for 3-D effects & shading, so those were helpful.  Must have thrown out the correct issue after I took out the articles I wanted to keep (not thinking I may need the info later).  (I have stacks of magazines & am trying to get rid of them (slow going, as one tends to read them again) after removing what I want from them & putting it in binders).

          1. Char9 | | #7

            Aha!  You just gave another reason for procrastinating on thinning out my magazine stash.  Bless you!


          2. Gloriasews | | #8

            What, I'm not alone in my piles of magazines???  I feel so guilty about this!  Each month I tell myself, "Self, just go through the magazine, take what you want & throw it out!".  Then I'd not have a bunch to mull over.  As it is, I go through them, then set them aside, as there is usually an article I haven't time to read right now - you know how it is.  I was just reading an article in the paper about hoarders - yikes!  I'm on my way to being one, it looks like.  I'm trying to discipline myself to spending a couple of hours a day (12 magazines are my goal) to get rid on these magazines, as I have run out of places to store them & they are SO heavy!  Good luck to you in your efforts!!  It would be a real load off my mind to get rid of them - then I've got to start on my stash - it never ends!

          3. Char9 | | #9

            Magazine hoarders unite!!!  This is NOT a flaw, it is a product of our unique and ever expanding creativity! 

          4. Gloriasews | | #10

            Thank you - I feel vindicated & so much better now!  (In fact, I don't have time for my 12 magazines today - there's always tomorrow)! 

          5. heyjude | | #11

            Hi.  I thought I'd jump in here.  I've got about 5 years of Quilter's Newsletter magazines saved, and I've found that articles that didn't interest me then are fresh and interesting to me as I look back at them now.  So be careful of what you discard.  It might be something you would like in a few years from now.


          6. solosmocker | | #12

            I agree with you also. I have nearly all the Threads and they are my nighttime reading. It always amazes me how I can pull out an old one, reread an article, and discover how much more pertinent it is to me now. Magazines that are very trend related, as in the mags put out by the pattern companies, I don't keep and will tear out the articles I want and put them in a binder. But a magazine that is focused more on sewing substance like my Threads and Australian Smocking and Embroidery, I definitely keep. There is just so much knowledge from cover to cover. When I read you wanted to throw away magazines, I wanted to scream "Oh, No!" I was feeling your pain of withdrawal. If you find that you can't find what you need quickly enough in all those magazines, make a photocopy of the content page of the mag, and put those in a binder in the order of the magazine date. That is one way to reference info quickly. Also, if you must cut articles, make a single binder to accommodate them. Invest in a whole punch, and punch them put in groupings, using tabbed sheets between topics. For example, one section for fit, another for embellishment, etc. Get the section name on the tabs and also make yourself an index for the front. My binder like this is referenced to all the time. I hope these ideas help you out. I felt I needed to mention this before you chuck all those mags. Organizing your binder can be a great TV time chore.

            Edited 4/23/2007 8:52 am ET by solosmocker

          7. MaryinColorado | | #13

            We are trying to seriously downsize.  I was sneaky about the Threads mags, gave them to my daughter in law so I can borrow them back. 

          8. Gloriasews | | #15

            That's exactly how I've been keeping my articles - in binders, with tabbed dividers, etc.  Now I need more shelves for the binders!  But the magazine piles are very slowly going down, thank heavens.

          9. Gloriasews | | #14

            You're right about keeping the mags - there have been articles I threw away years ago that I wasn't interested in then, but am now.  Unfortunately, I don't have room for them anymore & must get rid of them - but not before I've gone through them!  (That, alone, will take lots of time, so I'll be able to enjoy them all over again)!

  2. Josefly | | #2

    There was also a Threads article about using fine-pointed wood-burning tools to "singe" the edge of sheer synthetics. It may have been part of a larger general topic of edge-finishing sheer fabrics. The edge doesn't look burnt, and is barely visible. I think the tool was actually used to cut the fabric edge, but not sure of this.

    1. Gloriasews | | #4

      I remember the article - they used the woodburning tool!  When I searched "singeing" on this website, there was nothing.  Yes, I think it was the article about finishing sheer fabrics - I will look for that one now.  Thanks muchly!

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