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Determining the right side of fabric

How many of you have had trouble finding the right side of the fabric. Sometimes they look so much the same or maybe they’re different but both sides look nice. I read somewhere long ago that the fabric is rolled through various processes on rollers with pins sticking up to hold it in place. When the fabric comes off the rollers the holes are left in the selvedge. If you run your fingers over them, one side is rougher than the other. Think about the fabric on the rollers. The prongs go in the wrong side smoothly and punch out the other side leaving a rough hole. This is the same side that gets printed and pressed, etc. Take a look at a printed fabric and you’ll see what I mean. So the right side is the side with the rough holes. But you’ll be back to square one once you wash the fabric as the holes may disappear. In that case just use what ever side you like best and stick with it.

And how to make sure that once you’ve started sewing up the garment that you keep all the right sides out and looking the same. Its easy to mix them up when sewing. Try Painter’s Masking Tape – the blue stuff available from the hardware or paint store. It’s made with a lower stickiness and is more readily removable. Don’t use the regular beige tape. It will leave sticky stuff on the fabric and the longer it sits there the worse it gets. Keep a roll of painters blue tape by your cutting board and when cutting out your garments stick an inch or so on each garment piece – I put it on the inside but whichever side you pick, just be consistent. You can use it for fabric with a nap too – just put an arrow on it. Sometimes these things are hard to see close up but everyone else can spot it from across the room. I put a piece of tape on the remaining fabric and the scraps too. How many times have you had to recut a piece or make some bias after the fact….

Do you ever cut out more than one thing at a time? A neat way to keep everything together yet separate from everything else is to use the lids from record storage boxes. They are the perfect size for all your pattern pieces, threads, scraps, buttons, etc. And they can be stacked in alternate directions. Its a great way to stay organized and use less room. If you don’t have record storage boxes use the cardboard trays that cans of soda come in at Costco.
By Kathy White, Writer for the ASG


Kathy White is a Canadian living in San Diego. She writes a bi-monthly column for the American Sewing Guild newsletter in her area which she calls “Out & About” because that’s what everyone says when they listen to her speak. You can find out more about the ASG by checking their web site athttp://www.asg.org/


One Response to “Determining the right side of fabric”

  1. [...] Figuring out which side of the fabric is the ‘right’ side? ZWD sharing textile tips. Click here for more info on knits.  Click here for more info on wovens & here. [...]