As we move forward with our Fiber in Jewelry Boot Camp, I wanted to touch on the care of fibers.
A reader had commented about being hesitant to use fabrics and such because they get dirty, and was concerned about longevity. I had forgotten that I had those same concerns myself when I first started using silks in my work.
These are some beautiful Marsha Neal silks on my table just begging to be made into something!
Because I work mostly with sari silk and other hand dyed silks, like Marsha Neal's, I can really only talk of the care they require.
Longevity: When making jewelry, I am really pretty strict about making sure it is made well and will last. I guarantee my work, so I want it to last forever! Of course, things happen, and I fix them when needed. So using fiber was a bit scary to me. I will share my tricks in a tutorial later for making sure your necklace is secure, and is not going to break easily.
these are batik fabrics from Starry Road Studio, still on my desk, also waiting to become something! I cannot wait to dive in.
After I got that down, there was the care and cleaning of it. I personally love to wear my sari silk necklaces in the summer. They are much more comfortable and light on a sweaty neck then chain. However......there is the sweaty neck thing.
The nice thing is, that they are fabric, and you can gently hand wash it in the sink. I use a little warm water, along with some hand soap. I wet the fabric, rub in some soap for a bit and rinse, rinse, rinse. Allow it to air dry, and its all clean!
I hope this little post will help to ease your concerns as we move forward and find new ways to use fiber in jewelry.
There really are times when I tear a piece apart, and replace beading or chain with silks, because it either needed that pop of color they can offer, or it needed something soft for contrast. Once I started using it, I have not looked back!
If you have any other concerns or questions about using fabric in jewelry before we start up the boot camp, please feel free to ask!