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Thursday, June 5, 2014

Nani Iro double gauze fabrics...two Washi dresses

Two quick sewing projects. My favorite cotton fabric right now is Japanese double gauze. It is two thin layers of fabric that are lightly tacked together, creating a lofty, soft, and airy material. Some companies make patterns that are different on each side. This is a single patterned fabric from Nani Iro. Her designs are happy and colorful. These dresses are sewn from the indie pattern company made-by-rae. It is called a Washi dress.
 These photos are terribly rushed. The dresses are much better on a live model, but I wanted to get the aqua one mailed off to my sister.
The darker blue one is for myself, and it is so easy to wear that I may have to make another.
At first I was hesitant to sew a dress that required shirring:
After watching The Great British Sewing Bee, I decided to give it a try. They showed the participants making a 1930s shirt that used shirring, and the effect was lovely. You wind elastic thread around the bobbin by hand, and use that in place of regular thread. Your upper thread is regular thread.
Here is the back showing the elastic thread, I used red, but it comes in many colors. It was much easier than I had thought, and now I am thinking of all the ways to use it for custom fit in a dress.
Once the first row is sewn, the rest of the rows start to shrink in, and a blast of steam from the iron further sets the puckering effect.
The facings are hand tacked so they lay flat. That was perhaps the only difficult area to manage in the pattern, the opening wanted to ruffle a bit.

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