Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Need your help!

I have this beautiful voile that I would love to turn into another Tova top. My voile is prewashed and pressed and ready to go, and I can not wait to wear it. But here's the thing...whichever way I twist and turn I can not match up the pattern with the grain, aaaahhhhh!


 I tried both lengthwise and crosswise grain, I cut the other end of the selvedge off to see if it would make a difference, it didn't.  I measured, shifted, eased, petted, stroked, twisted and turned all to no avail!

As you can see the black stripes line up but the blue lines fall somewhere in the middle, is the print supposed to be like this?  I know prints don't always run true to grain and in quilting I can fudge a little and make it all work. But with my limited knowledge of dressmaking I have always understood grain matters!


 Pulling the fabric so that all lines match distorts the grain far too much, I don't think the garment will drape as it is supposed if I did that. I could not even cut the pattern out this way because I can't get the fabric to lay flat off grain like that!
 I could line up the black horizontal and ignore the blue but then I will have a semi diagonal blue line running somewhere through the center front. Or vice verse if I line up the black lines vertical.


I don't know what to do! I am not sure if I can make a Tova top with this fabric, will it look too odd if the blue lines don't match up? Am I doing this all wrong? What would you do?

 If any of you clever people out there has some advice for me I would greatly appreciate it!

x Leila


  1. I feel your pain. I have found that often the patterns on fabric don't line up and it gets me so frustrated! I don't understand it quite frankly....why isn't it a priority? I don't know the answer but I would be tempted to cut the top so that the pattern matches even if it is off the grain a little bit because I think it will be far to noticable and bothersome to you otherwise.

  2. i'm hopeless at matching things up so i'm kind of no help, but i'd probably go with the advice of the first poster and do the pattern matching, forgetting the grain unless it's really really off and would hang poorly if cut off-grain.

  3. I studied garment design and making in college and would suggest one of 2 things.

    First, you try and line things up the best that you can so the front looks the best. The back and side seams can and usually will be a little distorted in allover grid prints such as's nearly impossible to have it lay perfectly.

    Additionally, you do have some leeway in garment grain too, just don't go more then like 15% off grain otherwise you can get stretch/bias where you don't want it.

  4. I had the same problem with the AMH bright pink voile in this same print (different colorway); it was definitely printed on the fabric all wonky-like. Match your pattern, Tova will be forgiving if the grain is off a little.

  5. My opinion is to follow the pattern, and not the grain. Or you could try on the bias. I have already made 2 skirts and one dress on the bias and they drape very well.

  6. I have started cutting my Wiksten pattern on the bias. It takes more fabric, but they hang amazing! I have the tank, so I had to stabilize the neck and arm holes with stabilizer tape stuff. Just a thought? :)

  7. Sounds like you have some good advice - I hope you sort it out x

  8. yeah, lots of good advice, you'll do great leila! It probably makes me sound silly, but I think I would have just cut it the best I could and if things didn't match up, then I wouldn't care. yours will be gorgeous!

  9. I had the same problem with some batiste I purchased at my local Fabricland (Canada). I posed my question on, it seems some fabrics just won't true up no matter what you do. I even tried tearing it to get the straight grain to no avail.

    If all else fails, just go ahead and make your top -- it's for you, don't worry too much about things we can't fix.

    Good luck!

  10. My instinct would be to go with the pattern and let the grain be a little off, I'm glad to see that other people would do it this way too. That is lovely voile, I'm sure it will be gorgeous.

  11. That will make a beautiful top! Good luck!!

  12. It's a problem that often occurs when the pattern of a fabric is printed on top of the fabric instead of being woven in. It's a technique that cuts costs but sometimes leaves you with quite some trouble. Not much you can do about it.

    Kristy's advice is right. Try to get get the print looking it's best on the front and use the 15% margin that you can have on the grain without it distorting the shape.

  13. Or you could use another fabric for the fitted bodice and the voile in the sleeves and body then it may not be so noticeable! And those bits will be lovely and floaty and gathered so won't show any issues with matching!

  14. i am with anna... ;) xoxo good luck. you are such a sewing rock star you will make it work...


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