A few months ago my mother-in-law Aileen gave me some beautiful silk fabric in 2 different designs…there was metres of the stuff and I was more than delighted to take ownership of it!
Aileen thought that the lighter-weight of the 2 fabrics would make beautiful scarves and she was after an infinity type scarf that she could wear a bit like a necklace with a jumper and with no ends to get in the way. So I thought I would try and make her one for Christmas.
I found a few tutorials for making infinity scarves via Pinterest and roughly followed this one from the I Heart Nap Time blog. Mine took somewhat longer than 20mins though!
This was the first time I’d sewn with silk. I knew silk can be a little tricky, but I thought “hey, how hard can it be?” Well, I learnt that it can indeed be pretty tricky! I needed to cut a long narrow rectangle to make the infinity scarf, but it was sooooooo hard to cut the fabric straight as it kept moving all over the place! I tried to do some research into how I could prevent this. One suggestion was to use a fabric stabiliser, but that would have meant ordering some and waiting for it to arrive and I didn’t have time for that (though I’ve since read that you can use gelatine!). So the other suggestion was to cut the fabric between layers of tissue paper. This did help and I eventually managed to cut out a roughly rectangular shape measuring approximately 30inches by 15inches for making a single loop infinity scarf.
Cutting out was by far the hardest part. So I decided to make the scarves from a single piece of fabric to minimise the amount of cutting out and to reduce the number of seams due to the delicate fabric. The silk did fray quite badly as well and as the fabric has a slight transparency to it I decided to use a French seam for the long seam. To do this:
- Fold the fabric rectangle in half length-ways with wrong sides together.
- Stitch along the long seam approximately 0.5cm in (or half of your seam allowance) using a fine needle. This creates a tube of fabric.
- Turn the tube of fabric inside out so that right sides are now together. Press along the long seam before stitching along the long seam again approximately 0.5cm in (or half of your seam allowance) ensuring that the rough edges of the first seam will be encased by the next seam thereby hiding the rough edges.
- Turn the fabric tube inside out again so that right sides are facing out and press.
To close the loop I matched up the 2 ends of the long seam and pinned together. It was not possible to use a French seam to close the loop so instead I used my overlocker to sew the 2 ends together as far round as I could, leaving a small opening which I then hand stitched closed.
My machine handled the silk well and I didn’t find it moved about at all really. Overall I was pretty happy with the result and once I made one I was able to churn out a couple more for presents much quicker.