Water water everywhere

One of my favourite parts of any project is that bit in the middle, when most of the separate pieces are done and ready to be sewn together. It’s usually at this point that I pin them to my dummy, stand back and do a little dance of glee and excitement.

McCalls 2401 in Liberty silk

It’s at this point I think, that I sense the pure potential in a garment or project. It’s all made up and looking perfect in my mind’s eye (and my own, if I squint a little and shake my head a bit so the unfinished seams don’t spring out at me), and whatever little mistakes I make putting the zip in, finishing the hem, adding the facing don’t exist… yet.

So stop for a moment and imagine how I felt when I saw this, late last night.

Evil water spot

Yep – water marks on silk. Beautiful vintage Liberty silk. How can something so innocuous do so much damage, I ask you?

Any damage to the interfaced facings is fine – it’ll all be on the inside so I can live with that. But pressing the darts front and back (the iron was on a silk setting too!) inflicted the most awful stains to the dress. I’ve been researching how to remove them and I’ve got a couple of methods to try out. I’ll start from the top and move onto the next one if the previous tip doesn’t work.

  1. Rubbing the silk with another piece of silk, going in the direction of the grain. I have no idea how this will work but I’m willing to try it out.
  2. Holding the damaged area of silk above a boiling kettle so the steam removes the stain, and drying flat.
  3. Immersing the item in a lukewarm bath of water with a small amount of mild detergent, rolling in a towel to remove excess moisture and then leaving to dry naturally.
  4. Hanging my head in shame, beating myself until bloody with the damaged item and then taking to my bed with the cats for a year until the memories recede.

But what is the point, dearest readers, of being part of a caring, sharing blogging community all interested in the same thing, if you can’t holla for help occasionally? Consider this a yodel.

Have you ever experienced this? How did you get rid of the water marks? Do you have any tips for pressing silk, considering I still have to finish the item and put in a zip and it’s scaring me half to death? Is a year in bed truly the only way out of this? Do bedsores hurt? Help!

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6 thoughts on “Water water everywhere

  1. Sticky situation… I’m afraid I have no solution, and I definitely don’t see how solution number 1 will work – maybe just by transferring half the stain onto the other piece of silk therefore making it a little less noticeable…? Good luck I say. If not, have you considered applique? Coming from a woman with a very leaky iron, I feel your pain.

  2. oh noooooooooooo!! not the liberty silk!!! I have no solutions, sorry, but I’d be ready to try anything. Solutions 3 and 4 are the ones I’d go for, along with swearing.
    Seriously though.. if you have 3 scraps left, mark those in the same way then test the 3 techniques for removing the marks. One might be more effective than the others. The boiling kettle sounds a bit hazardous! Good luck, I really hope this problem goes away.

    • That’s a very good plan Clare – I never thought of trying it out on the scraps and I do have quite a few pieces! Thanks! Will let you all know how we get on šŸ™‚

  3. Could you try taking the fabric to the dry cleaners? I often spill things down myself (am a bit clumsy!), and as long as the liquid is mainly water based they always say they can get it out. And from my experience they always have, even on silky things. Might be worth a try before you resort to number 4!!

  4. Agree maybe try the dry cleaners. If you want to try washing yourself I do mine with baby shampoo and luke warm/ccol water (try a scrap). I’ve done this with a Dry clean only silk dress which I just couldn’t face getting dry cleaned every time.
    You hang it out to dry inside out first to start than turn right side out and make sure nothing its sticking together.

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