Fabric – the long and the short of it

Exotic print chiffonteamed with bright lime and pink

Brightly printed chiffon in exotic colours

I get a bit carried away when it comes to fabric.  I love feel of it, the colours, the textures, the way if folds and looks pretty in swirls or piles.  I also like all the many things I can do with it.  Whether it’s Christmassy prints for making cushions in my sewing classes or very sparkly lycra for a belly dance costume, I love them all.   I guess there’s a fabric somewhere that I don’t like, but I’m not sure I’ve met it yet.  Hang on… plastic coated cotton… that’s got to be fairly low on the list.

I’ve hoarded fabric for years and had stacks ad stacks of the stuff in the workshop so why do I keep buying more?  Well, the lure of the new is always there, but also, some of the fabric laying hidden in boxes is in reality just laying in wait for it’s perfect opportunity.  I just KNOW that 3m length of pink velvet overprinted with a clear snakeskin texture if perfect for something, but I don’t know what… YET.

I love making belly dance costumes, whether for professional dancers or amateurs (or even myself) I love the way the promise of a bolt of cloth can become something more.  How it can rise out of the ordinary and into something that dreams are made of.  Am I going a bit overboard here?  No, many of my dance clients tell me how special their costume has made them feel, how it gave them confidence to tackle a special dance project, orh ow they just felt more beautiful.

Sometimes it’s a long journey from the fabric mine to the coat-hanger, but other fabrics barely touch the ground in the workshop before it’s purpose becomes clear.  And there is a significant thing about fabric – it does it’s own thing.  The fabric speaks.  It tells you which way it is going to drape, how best it will fall, how reluctantly it will join with another piece of fabric.  Whatever plans I have for a piece of fabric can change in a moment – once it’s out of the box it has it’s own rules to play by.