by Shannon Gifford
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Yarn Scramble Novelty
The hottest fabric of the season is scramble-faced, novelty coating. This fabric is on a medium weight, densely knit or woven background, with assorted yarns applied to the surface in a swirled, artistic design. You’ll see it in a great variety of applications, from garments to accessories.
Treat as for a fine sweater; hand-wash, lay flat to dry.
Needles and Thread:
Use stretch needles, size 75/11, for construction. Cotton covered polyester or all polyester threads are the best choices for this fabric.
Seams, Seam Finishes, and Hems:
Even though many of these fabrics are on a knit backing, they behave in many ways like a woven fabric. Because of this, I recommend a straight stitch for construction, but lengthen the stitch to 3.0 or 3.5. Hems and seams will not require finishes, as the fabric does not ravel. However, I prefer to use a rayon seam tape to edge the hem for a clean appearance. Hand hem using a catch stitch, or machine hem using topstitching or a blind hem.
This fabric has a lot of inherent strength, so test any areas that you might think need interfacing. In most cases, interfacing will not be necessary. If you do feel that additional strength is needed, use a sew-in fabric such as washed linen (cut on the bias), or cotton batiste (again, cut on the bias). The bias cut will help maintain the slight stretch of the knit fabric.
Simple lines are best. Current ready to wear shows this fabric in vests, coats, simple jackets, and straight or a-line skirts. You might also consider making a great accessory like a purse or hat from this fabric!
Pair this fabric with leather or suede accents, or use fold-over braid to trim the edges.
Treat this fabric as you would treat boiled wool. It has many of the same properties, and is of the same weight as boiled wool. To avoid bulk, think through your project and target areas which have double layers of fabric. Use one layer of scramble fabric and one layer of a lighter weight fabric; for instance, instead of a double layer of the scramble for a collar, make the undercollar of lining fabric.