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A Material Difference: Working with Metallic Fabrics

  • There are some marvelous metallic fabrics out there, especially around the holidays. Christmas fabric (like in Decked with Holly) and Hanukkah fabric are just perfectly suited to gold and silver embellishment.
    But metallic accents are being used in many other collections, these days, not just for holiday prints.To get more news about metallic fabric cloth, you can visit mesh-fabrics official website.
    Glimmer Glow and Follow Me both work with the same fabric line, an ombre collection scattered with varying densities of gold metallic dots.
    Melanie Greseth and Joanie Holton have provided a couple of quilt patterns that play with metal accents, such as Midnight Wind Chimes and Twilight in the Garden.
    In fact, when Twilight in the Garden was featured on the 2900 series of the “Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting” television show, Melanie and Joanie told us a bit about metallic fabrics. The metal in this metallic element, they said, is made with crushed copper. And because it’s actually metal, your needle and blades will dull more quickly than with standard cottons, which is something to keep in mind. Metallic fabrics can use the metal to different degrees. Some fabrics have a light embellishment, others a medium level, and others can have the metal densely applied.
    I decided to sew some samples in the sewing studio—a print with a light coverage, medium coverage, and complete or dense coverage. (I used fabrics from the Jubilee collection by Amanda Murphy from Contempo Studios, FYI.)
    For starters, the “hand” of the fabric varied, quite dramatically. The print with the light coverage has the same drape and feel as standard quilting cotton, but the print with the medium coverage was a little stiffer. The complete coverage had very little drape and felt slick, reminding me a little of leather, but not really. The fabric with the dense coverage did seem to have some “scuff” marks, which I imagine would increase as the quilt was used or washed. The directions say wash cold, delicate cycle, mild detergents, and tumble dry low, and also recommend pre-washing; I totally disagree with the pre-washing. I’d rather have my wall hanging sewn and unwashed rather than risking damaging the fabric. I haven’t tried it yet, so I can’t say for certain that washing would damage the dense metallic fabric, but I’ll take my little samples home to launder, and will report back.
    In general, these metallics are best for wall hangings or quilts that get little use, or should be used sparingly, as accents in the pattern.
    I felt most comfortable pressing from the back, maybe because the right side looked like it wouldn’t absorb starch. The wrinkles pressed out well on all of my samples, and aside from a mishap due to an unclean iron (looks like we need a tool-cleaning day&hellip, they didn’t scorch or press any differently. The more dense the metal, the more they held heat, but not to a crazy degree.