How to Quilt with Silk
Designer Amy Walsh offers these tips for working with silk in your sewing projects.
- If you're concerned about the fabric fraying, fuse each fabric piece with an ultralightweight fusible tricot interfacing, such as Fusi-Knit from HTC (htc-retail.com), before cutting.
- Don't cut silk until you're ready to sew, as shuffling increases fraying.
- Use a new rotary blade to ensure clean cuts.
- Resist the urge to pull loose threads.
- Pin with new, sharp pins.
- Replace your sewing machine needle with a new 80/12 sharps needle.
- Use cotton thread instead of polyester, as there's less chance of cotton tearing or cutting the fabric at the seams.
- Press from the wrong side of the fabric with an iron on medium setting.
- When sewing, hold fabric taut (but not stretched) in front of and behind the needle to prevent puckered seams.
- Keep a lint roller near your ironing board to pick up threads that have frayed.
- Select a low-loft batting so the silk does not appear puffy.
- Use a neutral-color thread that blends with your silk. Amy chose a dark gray quilting thread because black was used in the weave of the silk.
- Avoid laundering quilts made from douppioni silk. If it's necessary to clean a silk quilt, Amy recommends spot-washing or dry cleaning.