Finishing The Semester

heat-setting

Weeks of preparation, of sweat and thankfully no tears (yet) have almost come to an end.

Tomorrow the final week of the term will begin and by this time next week my third year will be half over and the glorious Christmas break officially on a roll!

Pattern Drafting is finishing itself off smoothly, my final draft has come in handy for FFF. I am creating a crazy black and white gown that has 5 meters of heat set fabric for the skirt and train. The heat setting has consumed more than one of my days off.

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Heat setting can be [easily] done by taking 100% polyester fabric and adding metal objects/objects that will not melt when heated to 285 degrees F such as coins, glass figurines, keys, ect.  To set the fabric around the object, it needs to be tied really tightly with twine or thread. Colored cotton threads will actually heat transfer the dye onto the fabric.

I tried a different method to achieve very tight and even wrinkles. I gathered small controlled amounts, wrapped twine tightly around the bundle, then kept adding and wrapping. This itself took hours!   I used the gathered fabric for the train. For the main skirt, I baste stitched the fabric in one inch rows and gathered them together so the width of the fabric shrunk to 4 inches.

Both went into the oven for 15 minutes on 285 F. The smaller piece started to smolder slightly but there were no burn marks in the final piece.

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After letting them cool all the way through, I took all of the threads out and unwrapped the twine – which was the most satisfying part of the whole process.

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There was so many tiny threads from the basted piece, part of which were slightly deformed so my bobbin must have been wound in polyester thread.

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The dress will be modeled in the Textile Show & Sale Monday night at Seeds Gallery, along with a blazer I made from a modified 1970’s wedding dress pattern.

For my final FFF critique on Friday I will have to make an accompanying foot and head piece.

The show has pushed me to finish the pieces earlier, which will remove stress of the final week of presentations and crits!

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