Inexperienced tailor asks… melty hymo?

22 Jan


So I may have changed gear slightly and gone a tad crazy with regards to priorities, planning, and my ability to accomplish multiple sewing-related goals in a short period of time (before it gets warm here- in North Dakota time: not that short, but in inexperienced tailoring time: Not Long) in response to a contest-notification email that goaded me to do something I’ve been dying to do for ages, but told myself I a) didn’t need, b) wasn’t ready to try to make and c) where would I wear it anyway. All of which are probably still true, which is what makes it double-extra-deliciously fun, I’m afraid. Yes, my responsible sisters, I’m going deeply down the rabbit hole of unrepentant self-indulgence on this one. Now’s the time, stiff hand or no, I’m on board! More details to follow, but it’s going to be GREAT. G.R.E.A.T. There may be some crying and swearing and begging of tips from any of you who will listen before all is said and done, but I definitely do my best work under deadline, and I’m ready for the focus of the challenge. So excited!

So. Preparation for said change of gears has led me to a surprising revelation. B Black no longer sells *heavy* weight hymo containing any natural fibers whatsoever (stuff I got there last year was wool hair/cotton), which at first blush seems like a likely sign of the apocalypse, but I suppose is just the recession, unless- could it be that this stuff is really superior in any way other than cost to a traditional animal-hair product?

So, I’d like to query the hive mind here: have you worked with these? Great/indistinguishable results? Doesn’t it make it harder to tailor? It just seems that if I’ve gone out of my way to avoid synthetic fibers in the shell fabric, I don’t want to monkeywrench it by painstakingly meshing all this synthetic to it- it seems counter-intuitive to the concept of tailoring doesn’t it? Or am I reading too many old-fashioned tailoring books? Isn’t the notion that I’m creating shape with judicious use of heat, steam and pressure, all three of which I’d then have to largely avoid once I’ve introduced all this poly-rayon into the mix? Am I wiser to go down a weight to the medium-weight stuff? (p.s. did you notice Sunni sells that now, BTW?) Entire paragraph of questions!!

Or… is it just that I react to synthetics like a kid reacts to vegetables- I just haven’t learned how to appreciate them yet and someday I’ll love their unique properties and special wonderfulness pad-stitched all over my wool?

VPLL 1923 - 1924 Couture Porfolio; A little winter garment eye candy to sign off with

10 Responses to “Inexperienced tailor asks… melty hymo?”

  1. Molly at 8:24 pm #

    I’ve never used hair canvas or it’s synthetic counterpart, but I can’t see how it would shape very easily since heat and steam are how you usually shape tailored things. Probably not helping you though…

  2. indigorchid at 4:54 am #

    Having lived in Chicago, I only really know the options there, and I used to buy my canvas at Vogue Fabrics in Chicago ( There are some options on the website, but I think calling them might be the best way to go. Word of caution – their customer service isn’t ha… topnotch, but they have a fairly good selection of things! Also, Fishmans Fabrics could be worth a call too.

    Depending on your project, Sunni’s medium weight canvas could work with dense padstitching. Can’t wait to see what you’re making!

    • atelierfargo at 10:21 am #

      Thank you very much! I forgot about Vogue for this, although I am aware of them as being the one place I know of that has online sale of Thinsulate and flannel-backed lining for coats. I’d avoided both in favor of other materials this time around but it makes sense when you say they are actually located in Chicago that they stock these things- I hadn’t realized they were in my nearest metropolis! Thank you very much for the references and advice, and I’m very glad to have discovered your blog also!

      • indigorchid at 3:27 pm #

        And I yours! My dad grew up near Fargo (I think he took clarinet or oboe lessons there as a kid/teen), and I’ve been there a couple of times, which makes it all the more cooler to follow your sewing adventures when I can picture your town!

        Hehe.. hopefully that didn’t come off as creepy. I didn’t mean it creepy, I promise.

      • atelierfargo at 3:36 pm #

        LOL No problem, I feel the same about Bergen, have some family there, what a lovely city!

  3. Lavender at 8:42 pm #

    I’m thinking you should try the mid-weight, also. Extra pad stitching, or even doubling up a couple layers of light or mid-weight? Though please realize that I’ve never used a synthetic, and only done samples of pad stitching. Can’t wait to see what this is!

    • atelierfargo at 10:23 am #

      It’s looking like that’s the direction, and it’s looking like it’s going to be just fine… I can’t wait too! 🙂

  4. aviewintomyworld at 4:00 pm #

    Don’t think i’m going to be much help, i’ve never used hymo or tailored but my thinking would be along similar lines to yours – i understand tailoring to give form between the steam etc & stitching, have you time to try sampling Sunni’s medium weight?
    P.S; Can. Not. Wait. to see what you’re up to with this 🙂

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