Summer haze in paint


Hazy summer on handpainted on bamboo silk

My last fabric order included some bamboo silk.  I’m planning to use some of this as a lining but this leaves me with spare fabric.  It’s very soft, flowing  material so I thought it might make a scarf.   The fabric is plain white so I decided to add colour and texture by painting it.   I normally use opaque fabric paint to paint on cotton and wasn’t sure if this would work well as there are specialist paints for silk but not for bamboo silk.  I decided to water down the fabric paint to try and keep the material’s softness.  I wanted the result to look like it flowed like the material does.

I decided on an abstract green, yellow and white design inspired by the long hot hazy days of the summer where the grass becomes patched with yellow in places.   I love that time of year with meadows of tall grass waving in the wind and fields of cut grass interspersed by splashes of yellow and white from daisies, buttercups and dandelions.   It reminds me of hours relaxing outside, maybe reading or making daisy chains or just lying on the grass in the sun.

The fabric had a slightly different texture when it was finished but it was only a little stiffer than before.  The painting came out really well, with spots of yellow and white and longer brush strokes of green on a diluted yellowy green background.  It reminds me of dreamy lazy hot days.

Fring of hand painted bamboo silk fabric

P. S. The fabric is very transparent so I had difficulties getting the colours/details of the painting to show as well as they do in reality.

Shirt


Shirt fitting

Fitting of the check shirt

I had the second fitting for the shirt I’m making yesterday which went well, although some adjustments were needed.  The green check fabric is really nice to work with and hangs well.  I’ve started sewing some of the main seams even though I still haven’t finalised the exact look of the collar.  After reviewing the look of the shirt I have decided to created visible turn up seams on the bottom of the shirt to match the sleeves.  I think this will add some volume to the shirt and creates an extra detail to balance out the decorative buttons.  I also like the style it gives to the shirt, the turn ups on the sleeve remind me of the 50/60s and shirt sleeves being folded to keep cigarette packets in.  I’m hoping to get the hemming done today as I’m looking forward to relaxing for Easter.

Live fitting


Gingham shirt fabric

Gingham pinned and tacked

I think the fabric for the shirt I’m making was a very good choice as it’s tough but light weight which is ideal for summer.  It feels different now it’s been washed and ironed, it’s softer and flows even better.  I had a chance to inspect it closely and it’s really beautiful.  As it was handmade the supplier warns that there may be slight blemishes and I did find a couple but the pattern on the fabric looks better for the lack of total perfection.  The woven dark green and white and dark green thread that are mixed for the lighter stripes work really well.

I finished cutting out the pieces of the shirt yesterday and started pinning them together.  Everything went well until the second front piece and sleeve, I pinned them together and held up the shirt to check and found they were inside out.  I blame the fact I’d had an early morning and it was getting on by this point but I managed to reattach them the right way round in time for the fitting.

The fitting was fun although I had to be careful not to stab the model with the pins.  It looked good on the model and he said he liked the way it felt and how it fitted.  Some adjustments were needed mainly to the length of sleeve and allowing more space when the shirt was buttoned.  Now I’ve checked the general fit I was able to start roughly tacking the seams together which will make the fitting for fine adjustments easier as I won’t have to work around pins. Sewing rather than pinning has given me the chance to examine the look of the shirt again.  I’ve decided to make visible turn ups on the end of the sleeves rather than hide the hem.  It’s given the shirt more definition and broken up the sea of check a bit.  I’m thinking of doing the same with the hem at the bottom of the shirt but think I try it out at the next fitting before I make the final decision.