Thursday, September 25, 2014

Chalk Marks and Cotton Underlining

I am totally in love with waxed tracing paper!  Okay, I’ll shut up about it now.  But I think I have found my new "can't live without" sewing notion.  Will it eclipse rayon seam binding as my all time favorite?  Probably not, but now my Hug Snug has a best friend to play with in the sewing room.

For this predominantly black dress, I used both yellow and white sheets of the tracing paper.  Both of them disappeared under the steam of an iron while I was pressing my seams open later in the process.

I imagine that might not work with the darker colors.

But until the steam, the marks are super visible!

After cutting and marking the underlining, it was time to pull out the delicious silk/wool blend.

It was the moment of truth – would I have enough of the cherry print? 

Normally, I start pinning and cutting things from one end of the fabric, and go my merry way.  This time I was paranoid about running out of irreplaceable gorgeousness, so I laid everything out with a few pins here and there and worked my way through, hoping the fabric would not run out before my pattern pieces did.

And yes, everything fit!  I may even be able to squeeze a small project out of the remnants . . .

Next up was a whole lot of thread tracing.

This is probably not the best technique for anyone who hates hand sewing.  But I truly love it, so this part of the process was a lot of fun.  Which is a good thing . . . there were a whole lot of massive pieces to deal with this time around.

Not to mention many, many more hand sewing opportunities!


  1. I was just "waxing" poetic about that tracing paper myself. I can't live without it. Be careful if you use the red-colored sheets, though, because those marks are there to stay. I'm impressed with all of your careful thread tracing. It's such a useful process for difficult projects.

  2. Time for girly squee: oooooh! I love it when a plan comes together!

    Another opportunity to thank you for your clear photography (love that it's all natural light) and all that good work shown. Tracing paper is looking like a must.

    1. Me, too! I wasn't sure this one was going to get done in time, but it did!!

      Unfortunately, some of the natural light pictures will disappear for this project as the event gets closer, and my time is limited to evening sewing with a black fabric . . .

  3. Your meticulous prep work will produce a gorgeous dress that's for sure!

  4. Oh my! This wax tracing paper looks like a whole lot of fun and almost pure magic! I think I may have to get my hands on some!


    1. It is kind of fun to work with! And so much less frustrating than the stuff I am used to.

  5. Where do you buy your waxed tracing paper and what fabric are you using for your lining?
    Your thread tracing is a work of art!

    1. The tracing paper is from Richard the Thread.
      The underlining is a cotton sateen with a nice drape that I found at JoAnns, of all places.

    2. Good, I was wondering the same thing! I've never used wax paper, but it looks like it could save so much time!