Saturday, 29 October 2016

Let's Scuba-do This!

Sewing scuba knits has proved to be a challenge in the past. So I've been waiting to get my hands of the latest copy of Vogue Patterns magazine.

Kathryn Brenne wrote a piece on scuba knits, the fabric she used for that beautifully quilted jacket seen on the front cover.
The latest issue of Threads magazine also contains an article on sewing scuba knits. This one is penned by Ryliss Bod.  

After reading these two articles I've come to the conclusion that I'm more confused on sewing scuba knits than before. Although there are some helpful hints in both articles. What I came away with is that this is a fabric you will want to experiment. Bod uncovered the source of my confusion when she wrote, "[w]ithout accurate labeling it's difficult to know which fabric you're purchasing." When fabric stores are giving cute little name like "scuba" and "techno" it doesn't go so far to helping a gal or guy out. Even I have been seeing more and more fabrics that are labelled "unknown fibres" while out shopping at the fabric stores and this is so annoying.  

Bod claims that sewing with these fabrics is easy but if that were the case, I wouldn't have picked up these magazines. The article declares, "[s]ewing scuba fabric is much like sewing any other knit, so give it a try for garments with soft structure." 

I'm sure Bod meant to say it sews like any other polyester multi-blended knit, right? Because I find sewing cotton knits to be whole lot easier to sew, not this fabric.

Well, since I have some fabric left over from this project, there was nothing left to do than get rid make something else with it. Enter a TNT pattern.  

I like the style and fit of this pattern, Vogue 9056

Brenne recommends sewing with a needle with the smallest hole. It seemed to work with preventing the fabric to be pushed into the needle plate. I used a microfibre needle with the smallest size hole. I used the premium polyester thread on the serger even though I don't believe this fabric is capable of fraying. To sew this fabric, I found that silk thread worked the best.  

Am I sold on this fabric? Even though I have a top that I like and I do love the vibrant colours that are available in these fabrics I can't say that I'll be rushing out to buy more of it. I would rather save my pennies for a beautiful piece of wool, silk or linen. I'm just glad that I finally figured out how to sew this fabric without pulling it out from my needle plate.  

The Stats:  

Fabric:   1.5 metres 

Pattern:  Vogue 9056

Knit 'N Stitch:  1.2 metres

Additional Tools and Supplies:  Sewing machine, serger, microfiber sewing needle, scissors, polyester thread for the serger, silk thread for the sewing machine, clippers, pins, iron, ironing board, sleeve ham, tailor's ham, and coffee.  

Happy Sewing!  


  1. The top is beautiful. I haven't tried scuba yet, in part because it looks too ungodly hot for this stuck in a hotflash menopausal body. I wonder if you or others will report back how this stuff wears with a little sitting and some laundry cycles.

    1. This is not a cool and breathable fabric. I made a green turtle neck dress in a scuba knit that I can't get a fold line out of the centre front even after washing and pressing the fabric. Washing, I have tossed it in the washing machine on a normal cycle. When I pre-treated this fabric I did toss in the dryer for a tumble and took it out right away before wrinkles could set in. But once I made the garments, I hang them to dry. With the iron I'm worried because of the unknown fibre content so I'm pressed with steam on the synthetic setting but it wasn't hot enough for the Knit 'N Stitch to stitch so I raised the heat to wool and carefully proceeded.


In Sewing News Today...

Just when thoughts turn to fall sewing, it heats up this week with humidity to make one take refuge in air-conditioned spaces.  Luckily, I ...