November 2022 – All About Silks

The Colorado Chapter of ASDP met in-person and via Zoom in November to learn all about silks from member Clara Dittli.  We learned that momme is the weight of the silk fiber and that the shine comes from the triangular prism shape of the fiber that reflects light. 

Clara talked about the reasons why she liked different silks: Jacquard is her favorite silk fabric, while 4-ply silk is another favorite although it can be difficult to work with.  Clara described silks that are often used for informal garments (silk noil and raw silk) and silks that work well for members of a bridal family (silk dupioni) and silk that works well for evening gowns (silk chiffon and georgette).  Clara likes to use silk organza to underline fabric to create body for a garment and Crêpe de Chine for the lining.

Clara also talked to us about the differences between Italian silks and silks from China.  They both use similar silk fibers, but Italian silks are printed with many more colors (7-11+ versus 2-3) and are woven slowly by only one person.  These differences are reflected in the price of Italian silks, often $400-500 per yard.

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