It was purchased on the recommendation of a friend. Bought from my favorite internet fabric source, Fabric Mart. It was part of last year's Anna Sui pieces and I thought it was a challis-type fabric. Instead when it arrived it had a very loose weave...and although I liked the border print...I'm not sure about the color.
So this went into the bowels of the fabric closet...unloved. Fast forward to this week and a conversation that I had with several friends who also purchased this piece of fabric. Yeah, we were kinda like lemmings when we saw the first friend's piece! *smile* A member of this 'elite' group, had washed her piece. When she showed the end result to the other members of the group, I wasn't around...but I did hear about it...and her end results intrigued me.
Of course, this meant that my piece had to be retrieved and manipulated. Let me say here and not that I love manipulating fabric. I love how it can become something entirely different from the original piece. Sometimes its something better...sometimes its something unusual...but it is never the same piece that you started with.
Personally, I've never manipulated a piece and had something go horribly wrong...but then that might be because I'm open to any possibility. Manipulation is about experimentation and risk. If you're scared of the risk, don't manipulate. Me, I find it exhilarating to learn what a fabric can become with a little handling!
In its original form, this piece measured 5 yards by 44" wide. After one round in the washing machine on hot water with a small amount of detergent, this is it how it looked:
After a short trip through the dryer and a steam press, it measured 3 yards by 23". It also felted unevenly throughout the piece...some areas of the piece are wider by an inch or two and not as tightly felted. My piece became softer and more sweater-like. The color is denser and the fabric edges ruffle, also the pattern is tighter, less distinct.
Will I use it now? Yes, of course. It will make a great, trendy little sweater jacket over my black wool crepe LBD. It has already sent me looking for a pattern, one I've wanted to make for a minute now, Butterick 5187:
Friday evening and Saturday morning has been spent pretreating and manipulating fabric. I'm a fabric manipulator, are you?